You might have heard about lead generation services and how it can have a significant impact on your business when done the right way. Since lead generation makes such a difference to your business, it is vital that you think through about it before making any decisions in a rush.
This guide will help you understand leads and their types, lead generation, and whether outsourcing lead generation services to lead generation companies is the right option for your business. Outsourcing might be right for some and wrong for some, which is why careful evaluation before you make a final decision is vital.
Leads and Lead Generation
A lead is the same as a sales lead. A lead is someone who has shown interest in what you offer; product or service or brand. A lead is someone who can potentially become your client or customer sometime in the future. The way you know someone is interested is if they fill out a contact form, they download a free PDF or guide that is available on your website, or when they follow your business on social media. There are other ways that people can show interest such as subscribing to your newsletter. In most of the cases, the lead is the one who will be the first person to show interest before your business does anything.
Lead generation is the process of using marketing channels and strategies to identify potential leads, attracting these leads, and then making them prospects. These marketing efforts can be inbound, outbound or both. The lead generation channels used by marketers are social media, email, and search among others.
B2B and B2C businesses can do well when they employ the right lead generation services. The number of sales leads generated enables you to understand whether your sales targets will be achieved or not. When there are enough quality leads then there is a higher chance that they will be a part of your customer base.
Lead generation enables your business to grow because without them it won’t be possible for your business to reach its goals. Referrals are great but they aren’t as close to as good as leads can be. Your best bet for making sales is to attract the right type of people who will likely become your customers.
Only lead generation can provide you with that. Lead generation ensures that you are getting quality leads that make a difference to your business. It ensures that customers transition from being consumers and this improves the customer’s journey since nothing is rushed and they can go at the pace they wish. When done correctly, your business can benefit greatly from it.
There are two types of lead generation; inbound lead generation and outbound lead generation. In inbound lead generation, inbound marketing is used. For example, blog posts, product videos, and other methods are used to attract potential customers. Campaigns can be created to attract potential customers too. In this type of lead generation, the customer is the one who will contact the business.
In outbound lead generation, the marketer is the one who will make the call or send emails to potential customers according to the people he thinks can be potential customers. Hence, in this type of lead generation, the business is the one who will contact the customer first.
Types of Leads
While there are many different types of leads, all of them fall into one of the following categories.
Sales Qualified Lead (SQL)
An SQL is someone who has decided that they want to purchase the product or service that you are offering. They come to this decision after having tried the trials or samples that were provided initially when the lead showed interest in the product or service. It may also come after they have had consultations with your business regarding the product or service.
An SQL is also known as a hot lead. The salespersons need to stay in touch with SQLs until they make the purchase. Any business should have a sufficient number of SQLs so that it can grow and make the final sale to the SQLs so they become their customers.
Marketing Qualified Lead (MQL)
This type of lead has become interested in the product or service that you have to offer and they have downloaded information about it. This lead is also known as a warm lead because of their growing interest in the product or service that you are offering. These types of leads often come to you through your marketing efforts.
Sometimes, these leads are not that interested to connect to salespersons. However, when these leads are interested to find out more about the product or if they come across a problem, then they will contact the salesperson. These leads might, in the case of the latter, provide contact information so that salesperson can get back to them.
Information Qualified Lead (IQL)
These types of leads want to know about the product or service they have shown interest in. For example, they might give the salesperson a way to contact them so that they can send the information they want to know about. The lead isn’t aware of the details of the company and what the goals of the company are.
The lead is told how they can get the information they want. These leads can be provided with free samples, free trials, free webinars, and free catalogs. These leads usually do something after they have tried out the product or have gone through the information the salesperson has provided them with. An IQL is also known as a cold lead.
Understanding Lead Generation Outsourcing
Getting the right lead doesn’t mean it is time to finally sit down and relax. These leads should be converted so that they transition into becoming your customers. While this may sound easy, it is a task that is quite challenging, expensive, and time-consuming. This is why many people prefer to use the best lead generation companies that will generate leads and enable them to focus on their business goals.
However, there are many things that you should be aware of when you are thinking about using outsourced lead generation services. Here are the steps that are involved when you want to outsource lead generation services.
Step 1: What are your needs?
You need to know where you are failing in order to understand what your core business’s core needs are. You need to look into why your business is unable to generate leads and where you are unable to improve. You want to think about where you want improvements to be seen.
For example, you might be unclear about the type of buyer you are aiming to turn into a lead. You might have trouble attracting the right type of leads. You might find it challenging to figure out how the consumer thinks and what types of benefits he is looking for. You might be unable to turn the lead into a customer. You might have trouble saving the data during lead generation.
You need to perform a “needs assessment”. You might take the approach of figuring out what value to the business you are looking for. When you are clear about the concerns you have, it is easier to find top lead generation companies that can help you achieve your goals.
Moreover, the company providing the lead generation services will be able to better help you when you know what you need help with. If you go with a clear mind of what you need then the company can start working on creating a system for you that will ensure all your concerns are addressed. Discussing the needs assessment is key so that you are prepared.
Step 2: Identify the right lead generation company
You need to think about the type of lead generation partner that you are looking for. Are you looking for the best B2B lead generation companies? You might want to write down the qualities that you are looking for in a lead generation company so that you are clear about what you need. This can help you make the choice faster and can make searching much easier.
You should note down all the questions you wish to ask the lead generation companies. This enables you to find the B2B lead generation services that you require. You want to look for a company that has experience in the industry you work in so they are better equipped to help you.
The questions that you can ask the lead generation company can be specific or general. However, if you want to get to the core of the company then you need to ask specific questions. You should find out how much experience the company has in lead generation and specifically in your business domain.
You should ask about when the company was founded, about their clients, what the process of reviewing is and how they intend to create a successful lead generation process. You should ask about how results are tracked and how results are reviewed with the company’s clients. Ask all the questions you have to the company.
When you are looking for lead generation companies, you should ensure that you look at testimonials on their website. These can provide insight into the type of lead generation company it is. You can take a look at the satisfied clients the lead generation company has provided services to and what these clients have to say about the company.
You might be able to get information about how the company operates, how long it takes for the company to show results and what processes are involved in lead generation. You need to look for a company that ensures they understand your business and shows interest in what problems you are facing.
Step 3: Process of lead generation
At this stage, you have reviewed and selected the sales lead generation company that you wish to work with. Collaboration is the key because you want to know about the processes that are involved in lead generation and how the company is working to solve the problems your business faces.
Read About “Transformation Of Lead Generation“
Your business’ best leads should be targeted so that the company’s salespersons can get to work and turn them into customers. You should make sure you spend time figuring out who the best leads are and who have a genuine interest in buying what you are selling to them. This can be challenging but the lead generation company will make it easier for you.
Step 4: Track Results
It is easier to track the results when the lead generation company you are outsourcing to is transparent throughout the entire process. You can take a look at the prospect types and the methods of communication that were used.
When you track the performance over a long period, it enables you to understand what is working for your business and what isn’t. This enables you to understand how to succeed in lead generation and turn leads into your customers. You can more easily identify the leads that are not useful but are only wasting your time. This can be eye-opening since you become clearer about top-converting prospects.
You might have heard about lead generation companies in India that provide outsourcing to companies. While there are many types of companies such as online lead generation companies that provide lead generation services, the one you select should be right for your business specifically.
You don’t want to just choose a random lead generation company because that will waste your time, money, and energy. You want to know your needs, identify the company you are looking for, ask questions, and then come to a conclusion about which company you prefer. You should carefully weigh the pros and the cons before you decide to outsource.
Should I Outsource? Our Answer: Yes And No
Lead generation is no ordinary task and even after racking their brains, your marketing team might not have had success with leads. So, should you simply outsource lead generation instead of wasting resources? It depends on your current situation. No two businesses are alike which is why you need to analyze your business at present and then decide whether outsourcing will be beneficial for your company or whether having an in-house lead generation team is better.
The following will help you decide which option is better for different requirements of the business.
You should take a look at your staff and what they are capable of when deciding on outsourcing. You want to take into account, the skills that they have and whether they can take on the task that is required. In-house lead generation is good for you if you have an experienced team that can work on lead generation full-time. The more experienced your staff is, the better they will be at ensuring that they generate proper leads.
Another reason to consider in-house lead generation is when the main leads are coming through inbound marketing instead of outbound lead generation services. That is, you should have consumers who have expressed interest in your product or service and should have initiated communication first. If this is the case then you can consider in-house lead generation because you will have the right staff who can turn these people into leads and then eventually into customers of your business. If this is not the case then you might want to consider outsourcing your lead generation.
You should consider outsourcing when you don’t have adequate staff that can handle lead generation. Either you have a staff that is inexperienced or doesn’t have adequate experience that is required for lead generation. Your staff might not have the bandwidth to handle lead generation in which case you might want to consider outsourcing.
Outsourcing is beneficial as productivity is boosted. The people who know the work inside out are at work generating leads while you are focused on what needs to be done in-house. Hence, instead of wasting resources, you are utilizing the resources that you have in-house.
Outsourcing can help set up appointments with your best leads. The outsourced company can bring qualified prospects more effectively and you don’t waste time in the process as they are taking care of everything.
You will be able to give tasks to your employees that they are good at instead of burdening them with things like lead generation that they might not have complete knowledge about. This can improve your employees’ concentration and enables them to have a positive outlook when they are working. This can help increase productivity as your sales team can nurture and turn the leads into customers; something they are excellent at.
You can increase your sales and grow your business faster when outsourcing with the right company. This is because they know what they are doing, and so the journey from lead targeting to nurturing takes place a whole lot faster. This enables you to make more sales in a shorter period.
You will save a lot of money when you outsource even though you are paying the outsourcing company for their services. That is because of the time, investment, and productivity saved when compared to in-house infrastructure and training. Eventually, your business will save more and experience more benefits.
When you outsource it becomes easy to evaluate the results of the process. It becomes easier to modify marketing efforts when you outsource which is a major bonus for your business. Since the outsourced company will have a plan in place and you will collaborate, it will make it easier for you to evaluate the processes involved. In addition, this can be done efficiently on a regular basis so you know where you stand and what processes work.
Outsourcing can be beneficial if it is done the right way and with the right outsourcing partner. This can take time and needs analysis on your part because you are the one who gets to decide.
Sometimes whether you should outsource or not isn’t as clear like chalk and cheese. If your needs are not clearly outlined and if you don’t think you properly or completely fit in either of the categories then you can think of using email as a tool for lead generation.
People check their emails many times a day and you can take this into account and then market accordingly through emails. But if you choose this then you should ensure that you have someone in your team who is able to monitor the emails received, open-rates, etc and respond to emails. Setting up meetings through emails can be done as well to ensure your leads turn to customers.
What you need to remember is that if you outsource then you should work together as a team. These roles should be carefully thought out so that your employees know what you expect of them and the outsourcing company knows what you expect of them. Asking questions throughout the process is vital and should not be underestimated.
Another thing to remember is that regardless of what option you choose, in-house or outsourcing, you should never underestimate costs and assume that the benefits outweigh the costs. You will need to put in effort and resources while being patient the whole time. It takes time, knowledge, and experience.
There is no right or wrong answer to whether you should outsource to the best lead generation companies in India or other countries. It depends on your business. You should finally make the decision of whether it is more beneficial for you to hire and train someone in-house or whether you should simply outsource to another lead generation company. You need to analyze thoroughly before you make your decision because it is going to be an important one. You can outsource what you know your business is unable to do properly. You need to find the balance to ensure your business can grow to its full potential. Whether that includes outsourcing or not depends on your business and analysis.