Archive for the ‘Adding Value’ Category

The one thing lead buyers should know

Tuesday, March 20th, 2012

The following article was written by Justin Rees for Best Advice. To read the original,
click here

Over the last few years I have written hundreds of articles about lead generation, with many of them focused on what lead buyers can do to improve their return on investment from buying leads.

If I had to put all these tips in a list it could probably become a small novel but to be perfectly honest you might as well ignore them all if you don’t make sure you have addressed the fundamental most important factor that determines the success for most lead buyers and that is contact rates.
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Leads: for and against

Tuesday, February 14th, 2012

The following article was written by Justin Rees for Best Advice. To read the original, click here.

While it might sound strange coming from a lead provider, buying leads is not for everyone and there are lots of advisers that should probably steer clear of lead generation altogether. Unlike many forms of marketing and even many business expenses there is a very clear correlation between what you spend on leads and what revenues you make and therefore whether that spend has been worthwhile.

In fact part of the reason that lead generation still has a patchy reputation in the adviser community is that in the past, many lead providers have been too quick to take adviser’s money knowing full well that they are unlikely to make lead generation work. The result has been that there have been lots of lead buyers that have lost money buying leads and have shared their experiences with others. So does this mean that lead generation doesn’t work? The answer is a definite “no” and there hundreds if not thousands of companies using leads as a significant part of their new business strategy from small firms spending a few hundred pounds a month to those spending tens of thousands of pounds each week.
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Lead generation innovations in 2012

Tuesday, December 6th, 2011

The following article was written by Justin Rees for MyIntroducer.com. To read the original, click here.

We are rapidly approaching the end of 2011 and the New Year is only around the corner.

2011 has been a busy year in the world of lead generation and 2012 is set to be no different with innovation set to be a key driver in the industry. So what do lead buyers have to look forward to in 2012?

Voice lead generation

In the financial services industry, voice leads have traditionally meant hot transfers where anonymous call centres dial old data to generate interest for various products and services and any consumer that wants to speak to an adviser is transferred across.

While many firms do well from this type of voice lead and you are at least guaranteed to speak to the consumer there are still issues which can mean conversions are no different or even lower than data leads.

Everything from the age of the data used to how the call centre agents are incentivised can affect lead quality.

The next evolution in voice lead generation is where the consumer initiates the call themselves. This immediately gets around all the issues with hot transfers as the consumer intent is strong.

This means lead buyers get 100% contact rate and a consumer who is ready to transact. This type of voice lead generation is already big business in the US and 2012 is set to be the year where it takes off in the UK.

Mobile lead generation

You can’t escape the rise of mobile and statistics show that more and more people are going online on their mobiles rather than on their desktop. This presents a huge opportunity for lead providers to capture all these consumers that are going on their mobile devices looking for financial services advice.

While many companies have experimented with generating leads through mobile, nobody has yet really cracked it apart from in certain sectors like loans where it is common practice for big loan brokerages to use SMS marketing to generate loan enquiries.

The real opportunity is using display advertising on mobile where consumers will see ads for various financial products and services and then click through to a specially designed mobile landing page where they can submit their information to be contacted.

This has huge potential reach and the ability to target certain types of customers is becoming increasingly sophisticated all the time. 2012 is set to be the year where mobile lead generation starts to gain more widespread adoption across verticals.

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20 lead generation tips: part two

Wednesday, November 2nd, 2011

The following article was written by Justin Rees for Econsultancy. To read the original, click here.

I was recently invited to speak on a panel about lead generation which covered everything from the state of the current market, the issues faced by lead buyers and sellers and a sneak peak into what the future holds for the fledgling UK industry.

As part of the panel we were tasked to come up with a series of lead generation tips for the audience and myself, Andy Purbrick from Dennis Publishing and Sean Sewell from Performance Horizon Group put our heads together to come up with a top 20.

Last week we covered the first 10 lead generation tips, and this week we bring you tips 11 to 20.

11. Follow up as soon as possible

In the world of online lead generation it is minutes that make the difference and not hours!

A study in the US by InsideSales.com found that the odds of contacting a lead increase by 100 times if attempted within five minutes versus 30 minutes. And the odds of qualifying a lead increase by 21 times if attempted within five minutes versus 30 minutes.

Moral of the story: the quicker the response, the better the lead performance.

12. Tracking of leads to conversion

The receipt of leads is never the objective of an OLG campaign. Ultimately, it’s all about conversion whether that’s today, tomorrow or two years into the future.

What this means is that you need to have the software to measure the entire journey from lead to sale no matter how long it takes and no matter how many steps involved in the process. If you can’t track leads from all the way to conversion then you are potentially wasting your money.

13. Measure results over an adequate time period

It’s not just about having the software, but making sure you are looking at the correct time period by which to measure the results of a campaign.

Even a high value finance campaign where leads are processed in a call centre and the majority of sales will happen in the first few days of lead receipt there are still incremental sales to be gained over time so the same campaign measured over different time frames can give you a very different outcome.

Week one might break even but by week five you may be into profit.

14. Nurture leads for incremental sales

While it is absolutely imperative to follow up every lead within minutes there is plenty of value to be extracted over time from lead nurturing techniques to manage your prospect list.

Remember, the consumer might be at various stages of the buying cycle when they fill in the lead form so, even if they are interested when you first make contact, they might not be in a position right now to hand over their credit card details.

This is especially true for certain products, for example mortgages, where you rely on so many more factors than just the consumer’s purchase intent. If you can nurture leads over time then your campaigns will be much more successful.

15. Have a solid campaign objective

Just like any marketing campaign, you need a clear objective before you start spending any money.

Without objectives you have nothing to aim at and no way to benchmark success. Also, communicate these objectives to your lead suppliers as they will be able to give you a realistic idea of whether the objectives are reasonable.

This will allow you to fine tune your campaign in advance rather than after the leads have been delivered when you have no way to affect the outcome of the campaign.

16. Lead = multiple opportunities

Every lead should be seen as multiple revenue opportunities whether it’s cross-selling into multiple products, repeat sales or further monetisation opportunities in the future.

All revenue generated from each lead either directly or indirectly should be measured and attributed back to the original source.

It might be that two campaigns perform the same on a like-for-like basis but if one campaign offers far more additional revenue opportunities this might be the one to allocate more budget to.

17. Allocate an appropriate budget

Lead generation is a numbers game but you need to make sure you have a large enough sample to see those numbers play out.

If a campaign has a CPL of £50 then you need to make sure your budget is large enough to get a big enough sample of leads or other variables will have a greater weight in the outcome of the campaign and you won’t get a true reflection of lead performance.

18. Make sure that the method of data capture is appropriate for the campaign

If you are looking to collect high value finance leads to put through a call centre then don’t buy incentivised co-registration leads. However, if you are looking to build a prospect list as quickly as possible at low cost then perhaps you would want to consider incentivised traffic.

Each campaign should be judged on its own merits and the objectives of the campaign should shape everything from your budget to the method of origination.

19. Cheaper leads aren’t always better

It is human nature to want more of something so naturally a lead buyer with a fixed budget confronted with the option of buying thousands of leads or hundreds of leads will more often than not opt for the cheaper leads because they get more of them.

However, lead buyers should not be fooled by lead price. To generate good quality leads can be quite expensive so if the supplier gets a fair payout for their efforts they can spend the budget on premium inventory and generate better quality leads.

20. Volume is not an objective

I often get emails from advertisers and agencies with briefs for lead generation campaigns along the following lines “We need 1,000 leads for ‘x’, can you deliver?”.

All leads are not created equally and 1,000 leads from one supplier might be totally different in origination method and quality to another. It is better to get one lead that converts into a sale than 1m leads that don’t generate any revenue!

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Don’t let leads dry up in summer sunshine

Tuesday, July 12th, 2011

The following article was written by Justin Rees for Mortgage Strategy. To read the original, click here.

Summer has arrived and while many people’s attention will be on their holidays there are still plenty of opportunities for business.

Looking at trends over the last few years, lead volumes do dip in the summer months across many financial services products but as online marketers become sophisticated at targeting consumers, hundreds of thousands of leads are still being generated.

Most leads are still generated in one of three ways through consumers searching for a product online usually via Google, responding to a display advertisement such as a banner, or receiving an email about a product and then filling in a lead form to be contacted.

In the summer months marketers adjust the mix of how they spend their media budgets to maintain lead supply when consumer behaviour changes.

For example, looking at a popular lead like life insurance, fewer people will be searching on Google to explore their options over the summer but thousands of consumers will still be receptive to email marketing about such products.

With the right marketing messaging and call to action, it is still possible to generate a good supply of quality leads throughout the summer months.

Interestingly, the feedback from many advisers is that lead quality is often higher in the summer as with fewer consumers filling in lead forms, the ones who do tend to be more engaged and ready to do business.

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