Tips for Hiring a B2B Lead Generation Agency
Developing a significant and sustainable customer base is a large part of a marketing manager’s job. Sometimes, though, the manager has a need to jump-start the process and bring in a lot of leads as quickly as possibly, or they are launching a new product and want to acquire in a lot of leads for that product. So, they consider hiring a company to do lead generation.
Here are some tips to consider before hiring a lead generation agency:
Start with Reputable Organizations. There is no shortage of businesses who offer “lead generation”, but there is a huge difference between a quality provider and a novice that may or may not know what they are doing. To find a reputable lead generation agency, examine their website, blog, online reviews, content and any social media to ensure their marketing efforts are well-developed on multiple channels. These are indications of a business’s dedication to engendering a sustainable, long term business with their clients. Seek out customer testimonials and lead generation case studies on their site. This type of social proof is a hallmark of a successful company with loyal customers.
They employ a variety of methods and demonstrate flexibility in implementation. There is no “one best method” for lead generation. The industry, the target audience, the products and the services all have an impact on how qualified leads search for information and respond to lead-generation tactics. Techniques such as content marketing, industry influencers, SEO lead generation, email marketing, social media marketing and ad placement are all impacted by your business’s situation. Ask to see what the lead generation agency has done for at least two different companies with different goals to ensure they can adapt individually to the company with which they will be working.
They work with you and within your corporate structure. You want the lead generation agency you hire to be creative and offer innovative suggestions, but there is also the need to maintain your corporate brand reputation. Therefore, make sure you know how they will work with you to keep the professionalism as well as the business look and feel of all promotional content that they produce.
They provide realistic ROI estimates. Even the best lead generation agency cannot create miracles. Being told that you can have a 1,000% increase in leads is not realistic even if they claim one of their clients did get that kind of response rate. You want ROI projections based in reality; incremental response rates to your current responses, methods for doing so, outreach programs, time frames and cost. Slick sales presentations and blue-sky estimates mean nothing if the return is not there.
The leads work out regarding return on investment. A lead is no good if it does not develop into long-term, repeatable sales. Measuring a lead consists of calculating cost vs. lifetime value. When you are evaluating the lead-generation company, consider the quality of the leads; what is the long-term lifetime value of the leads that are brought into your company? They must be leads that you can leverage later.
They are very knowledgeable about the latest technology. The technology should include social media, Search Engine Optimization (SEO) techniques and trends in customers buying behavior. The Internet changes daily. Google and the other search engines modify their search algorithms more than 500 times per year. The lead generation agency you are thinking of hiring must be aware of these industry changes and know which strategies bring in the most leads at any given time. Check to see how the agency has recently changed their methods when Google switched to their mobile-first index. If they cannot provide a case study of how they adapted, do not hire them.
In summary, hiring an external lead generation agency to perform lead-generation has plenty of upsides for your business. It also comes with some potential negatives. When considering an agency, keep these principles in mind to ensure you hire the company that will deliver the best results for you.
Is the quantity and quality of your leads as good as you would like them to be? If not, contact KEO Marketing. Our marketing experts will be happy to discuss how to boost the number of qualified leads to your website. Contact KEO Marketing or call us at 888-702-0679.
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With more than 25 years of hands on marketing strategy and operations experience, Sheila Kloefkorn is dedicated to developing marketing strategies and plans that help clients succeed. Some of the world's largest brands have depended on Sheila for marketing programs that delivered tangible and substantial results. Specialties: B2B marketing, lead generation, lead nurturing, sales strategy, marketing strategy, competitive marketing strategy, social media, search engine optimization (SEO), search engine marketing (SEM), mobile marketing, email marketing, website design, marketing plans.