No More Paying For Bad Leads

Turning Bad Leads into Cash

There are several costs associated with having bad marketing leads in your contact database. Often, we break these down in terms of direct costs, such as undelivered direct mail or the labor-intensive cost of pursuing unproductive leads, as well as indirect costs such as brand damage and reduced customer satisfaction.

There is one other cost that needs to be considered as well: the cost of the lead (CPL) itself. Many firms have marketing strategies that revolve around contacting prospects from purchased lead lists, and these purchased lists represent a major cost in sales and marketing budgets. In this case study, we look at how using our services helped one of our clients identify bad leads, leverage lead quality to negotiate better rates with their list provider and save a substantial amount of money upstream, while avoiding the downstream costs of bad leads.

Service Objects' Lead Validation - International identified over 12% of leads were bad in a single list purchase. Using these results allowed us to demonstrate the poor quality of a portion of our leads and negotiate a $16,000 refund with our list provider.


Filtering out bad leads – by the numbers

This particular client, who remains anonymous, markets and sells their industry-leading telecom services through account-based marketing, which includes purchasing high-quality leads from third-party list providers. The response and close rates they were seeing from these lists were under-performing and they suspected that the quality of the purchased leads was the issue. With these suspicions, they approached us with a sample database of 5,000 leads that they had obtained at a cost of $25 per lead.

Using Service Objects’ DOTS Lead Validation - International service to verify the leads for legitimacy and contactability, the service returned a 13% failure rate, or approximately 650 bad leads. At $25 per lead, this yielded an immediate savings of over $16,000, allowing them to submit a claim with the lead vendor to replace these bad leads.

By processing the entire database before using these leads for marketing, the company also saved themselves the per-lead costs associated with storing these bad leads in their marketing automation platform, as well as the financial, human resources and reputational costs of marketing to these leads.

Based on these results, our client was confident in setting up an automated workflow that relied on Lead Validation - International to flag and remove poor quality leads. Below is a simple representation of the workflow they deployed.

Figure 1. Lead workflow process

It is worth pointing out that this process saved a considerable amount of money before even getting to the point of assessing the viability of these leads as sales prospects. Leads that passed the validation process entered this firm’s marketing funnel, where prospects who did not respond to at least three contact attempts were discarded on the client side. By filtering out leads with bad contact information or potential fraud, the ROI of these good leads was optimized.

Going beyond validation - implementation support

Another key aspect of this case study was the importance of good implementation support. Our product experts quickly identified and helped fix some early issues where the entire lead payload was not being validated, and only some contact information was being checked. Fixing these issues not only increased the number of failed leads detected, but also prevented some important consequences: part of the Lead Validation - International service is to check for email address deliverability, saving the client from emailing to bad addresses and risking possible blacklisting.

Lead Validation - International represents a convenient, bundled process to ensure that leads are viable. It cross-validates each contact data point and device against hundreds of authoritative data sources, providing quantitative Certainty and Quality scores as well as correcting and appending accurate data where needed. It provides a one-stop solution for lead data from either the US or over 250 countries worldwide, together with Service Objects’ 24/7/365 customer support and guaranteed 99.999% uptime.

To learn more about how you can save real money and improve the ROI of your lead generation efforts, contact us for a free product demonstration and a complimentary trial license – our friendly and knowledgeable data quality experts are always happy to help.

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