Sales Management

Why Cheap B2B Calling Lists Cost More Than You Think

Christopher Tuttle

Sad FaceDo you test your list sources to make sure you’re not wasting your sales reps’ time?

A telecom provider with 100 inside sales reps decided to run a test to find out if it was spending its money wisely.

It found that targeted calling lists, even though they were more expensive upfront, actually saved the company time and money. The higher-quality lists dramatically reduced the number of calls reps had to make to generate a lead.

If the telecom would have stuck with the cheaper list, it would have spent $252,000 to generate 312 leads. However, by investing in a more targeted database, the campaign cost dropped to $92,400.

So, they saved more than 60 percent by buying a more expensive list. Interesting, isn’t it?

The less you spend on your data, the more you’re going to spend on your team’s time. So, let’s look at some strategies you can use to optimize your lead generation process.

Optimize your existing lists

You don’t always need to start with a new list. You can optimize ROI from your current lists.

A B2B company that provides ediscovery for attorneys was trying to manage 25 list sources. They were also doing inbound marketing and trade show campaigns.

They wanted to find out which list would drive the most efficient lead generation.

They were prioritizing lists chronologically, from newest to oldest. If an event happened in January, they would work that list hard in January and February. They would assign less priority to it over time. But they were basically trying to put equal energy into all of their lists.

We started to track three key metrics that defined a list’s efficiency:

  • How many calls does it take to get a contact?
  • How many calls does it take to generate a lead?
  • What is the conversation-to-lead ratio?

We discovered that this company could save a significant amount of money by prioritizing its lists according to the results of these findings rather than recency.

If they continued to call on their lists chronologically, they could expect to pay an average price per lead of $891. However, if they focused on the most efficient list sources, the average cost per lead would be $216.

The bottom line is that you can reduce your costs and improve your ROI by investing in targeted lists and optimizing them.

You can learn more about optimizing your lead generation in my book, “Lead Generation for the Complex Sale.”

This post provides a brief summary of my presentation at the Inside Sales Virtual Summit. Watch my full session in the video below.

Brian Carroll is the executive director of revenue optimization at MECLABS and CEO at InTouch, part of the MECLABS group.

Connect with Brian on Google+ or LinkedIn.

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Image credit: Shawn Campbell