The Pros and Cons of Buying B2B Sales Leads

TIME TO READ: 11 minutes

Buying leads can seem like an easy and quick way to find prospects ready to hear your sales pitch and buy. And, of course, it can work if you do it right. But, it depends on so many factors, including your niche and product. It also depends on who you get the leads from.

Initially, many businesses worry about purchasing sales leads. Some may think they are too expensive, while others worry they will pay for junk leads. Depending on who you purchase leads from, this may or may not be the case.

However, there are many advantages of buying leads to consider as well.

Let’s discuss the pros and cons of buying B2B sales leads.

The Pros

Instant Access to Prospective Customers and Clients

A significant advantage of buying leads is that you start receiving them almost immediately after signing up with a lead company. Buying leads cuts several steps out of marketing campaigns you may be doing yourself.

Running your own marketing and lead generation campaigns involves many factors. It also requires marketing expertise, constant testing of what works and doesn’t, and continuously adjusting and fine-tuning your campaigns. Then, of course, there is also the cost of running paid campaigns. So, considering all these points, including the cost, time, and expertise required, what is your ROI? Unfortunately, most businesses have no idea.

Buying leads bypasses all of this, and you only end up paying for an actual lead that has come as the result of implementing all of the above.

It’s as simple as that. You buy a lead, and now you have the company, the name, the contact details and ideally, an overview of the lead’s requirements ready for you to reach out to them.

Time-saving

Finding your own leads can take time. This is time you aren’t dedicating to your business or, as a salesperson, closing actual opportunities. When you buy leads, the lead company has done all of this work for you. As a result, you can reach out directly to your potential clients and work on selling instead.

According to Forbes, sales reps spend less than 36% of their time selling. Much time is wasted on non-revenue producing activities, such as catching up with colleagues, administrative tasks, checking social media and internal meetings.

According to HubSpot, here is what a salesperson typically does during their working day:

21% – writing & sending emails

17% – entering data

17% – prospecting and researching leads

12% – attending internal meetings

12% – scheduling calls

Data entry, prospecting and researching leads are the two tasks that businesses spend the most time on, mainly to find leads. Purchasing leads could eliminate the time it took for these manual, time-intensive tasks.

In addition, the skills required for lead generation are not necessarily the same skills needed to negotiate and close deals. Not all salespeople are good lead generators. As a result, call reluctance is a big challenge within sales teams. Buying leads and allowing good closers more time to close deals can help overcome this problem.

Flexibility

Buying leads is an excellent option because you only pay for what you receive. You don’t have to guess how much you paid for each lead, and how much you received in return. Leads may be great for some, but may not work for others. This is why you need to evaluate the benefits and drawbacks before choosing them.

Save money – only pay for valid leads.

Whether running your own marketing, hiring a marketing person, or contracting with a marketing agency, you pay for every lead regardless of whether it was a good opportunity. Buying leads from a lead generation services, you only pay for the lead if it is a real opportunity for the product or service you provide and in an area where you are active. You never pay for fraudulent leads or wrong numbers. At least not when you work with a reputable lead company.

Another way to look at it is this; how long would it have taken you to find those leads on your own? If you’re in sales and involved in outreach prospecting activities to find leads, you’ll know very well how long it takes to obtain databases, research prospects, qualify them, and turn them into an actual sales-ready lead.

Yes, buying leads does cost money, but how much would it have cost you if you hadn’t bought any? The time your staff or you spend doing such work could be better spent doing something else, generating more revenue. By buying qualified leads, you sidestep the time and extra costs it would otherwise take doing the work yourself.

At Leads2Sales, we generate every lead using our own money to give you the peace of mind and freedom to scale up or down without worrying about your marketing spend being wasted.

 

The Cons

Questionable lead sources

The downside of getting poor quality leads is that your business is not the best fit for their needs. In addition, it wastes a salesperson’s time following up with them, resulting in confusing, frustrating, and sometimes lengthy conversations that end up nowhere. There is only one thing worse than wasting money: wasting time.

From which organisation did you buy the leads? How sure are you that the leads you get will be qualified? One of the biggest issues with buying leads is that you don’t always know where they came from and how they obtained them. This will significantly impact how receptive these leads will be to your offers and, ultimately, your conversion rates. So you want to know as much as you can about the lead gathering process.

The other thing to consider is what do you determine to be a lead? There is a big difference between purchasing an email list, perhaps with contact names and phone numbers, vs purchasing qualified sales-ready leads.

Buying industry-specific business databases can hardly be called leads. They can’t even be called marketing-ready leads. You have no idea how accurate and up to date the data is and if anyone on these lists are even remotely looking for what you offer. How many times has the list been sold to other suppliers?

Questionable lead quality

Many lead providers promise they can supply as many leads as you can handle. But what is their lead quality? If more than half are junk leads, unqualified and basically non-opportunities, you’re probably wasting a good chunk of your money and your time. Leads purchased from Leads2Sales also vary in quality. For example, we classify our leads as either marketing-qualified, sales-qualified or premium-qualified. What we classify as a marketing-qualified lead is much more than a simple name and email. Our leads have, as a minimum, expressed an interest in the product or service you provide, some basic criteria and have freely provided their contact details, including a phone number, expecting more information from suppliers.

What we call sales-qualified leads are marketing-qualified leads that have been much further qualified, are generally in-market now and ready to receive specific offers and quotes from suppliers.

So when buying leads, be sure of what information you’re going to get and will be paying for. It will also pay to determine if the lead company you’re buying leads from has a clearly-defined refund policy. Ambiguous guarantees or refund policies make it difficult to understand which leads qualify for a refund or replacement and ultimately lead to an unhappy user experience.

Find out about the Leads2Sales Lead Quality Guarantee.   

Sudden halt on incoming leads

Lead generation companies often offer refund policies for leads that do not match what they promised. Unfortunately, if not well managed, when the number of refunds exceeds the level where their lead generation is profitable, it is often easier for the lead company to simply stop operating, cutting off your steady stream of leads entirely. As a result, good lead companies usually have quality assurance departments and employ other staff dedicated to dealing with refunds and other service issues.

It is a good idea to find out how long a lead company you’re considering has been in operation. This will provide a strong indication of their future longevity in the industry.

Long-term contractual obligations

Lead generation firms tend not to offer trial periods so you can receive a few leads and determine their quality before deciding whether to pursue buying more leads.

Many lead generation companies force you into contractual obligations. They will be for an extended period (6-12 months) and usually involve relatively large lead quantities of leads. In other words, if you are unhappy with your leads after a few months, you’re locked into a contract with the company (unless they go out of business before the end of your contract).

We all know that sales leads are vital to generating new business. Without leads, there are no prospects to put into your sales pipeline, no initial meetings to schedule, no scoping meetings, no proposals to send, and no sales to be made.

Buying leads could make the job much easier, assuming the lead data is accurate, and the majority of leads are in fact quality prospects.

We firmly stand by never relying on just one lead generation strategy. For your own website, SEO and organic traffic are the best long-term lead generation investments. However, we believe you should pursue anything that will give you a positive ROI. If you are considering buying leads from a lead service, add it to your lead generation mix for the shortest contractual obligation possible to see if it meets your ROI needs. Once proven, you can commit longer if this provides a cost benefit. The more sources of leads you have, the less chance that you suddenly stop receiving leads altogether.

Now that you have a better understanding of the pros and cons of buying B2B sales leads, start here to let Leads2Sales help you grow your sales pipeline today!

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