May 17, 2017

5 Top Lead Generation Companies and How to Choose One

Organically attracting users to your site takes a lot of time and effort, and those lead generation tactics ebb and flow with consumer demand and general brand awareness. To help make up for an organic pipeline that has slowed to a trickle, many sales and marketing teams turn to lead generation companies to keep sales teams busy and expand  their customer base.

ALSO READ: 4 B2B Marketing Strategies That Deserve Help from an Agency

Plenty of companies purport to have the “best database” and the “most up-to-date information” on decision-makers across industries, but how can you really tell which lead generation service will actually produce quality leads that convert? Incorrect and incomplete information doesn’t help your sales reps; it actually makes their jobs more difficult. You hired them to sell, not to spend all their time verifying data.

What sets lead generation companies apart is how they gather and update leads, combined with the kinds of access you can get to that data. The trouble is, lead generation companies are notoriously secretive about their competitive advantages and how they maintain the best data.

This article aims to help you find the best lead generation company for your needs by illuminating the strategies these companies use to collect and update their databases. We’ll also provide a few of the best vendor options to research, depending on your needs. 

Success Strategies

Lead generation companies have lots of ways they find and warm up prospects. The most reliable and expensive tactics involve making targeted, one-on-one contacts with prospects to measure purchase intent and status of decision-makers. This may include:

  • Content syndication: the lead gen company emails industry and interest-specific informative content to known contacts. Interactions with that content show potential interest, and companies can follow up with further content or sales calls.
  • Telemarketing: The lead generation company calls contacts to gauge interest in a particular product, to verify job title and contact information, or to offer content syndication. 
  • Database mining: Companies use a variety of verification methods and computer programs to groom proprietary databases and public records to find new prospects and revive old contacts.
  • Email and nurture campaigns: Using email, phone calls, content syndication, and a variety of other touches, the lead generation company provides services to warm existing contact lists into lists of leads that internal sales teams can call with a higher chance of success.

Although human contact doesn’t guarantee a sale, the leads with the highest close rate tend to also come at the highest cost per lead (CPL) to cover the man hours it takes to verify information.

Think Critically About Database Size

Buyer data is the new business currency, but data gathering is a gambler’s game. The more data a lead generation team has, the more likely they are to find actionable leads. Then again, some lead generation companies source and resell leads, buying them from other providers and selling them to you at markup. This not only means you pay more per lead to cover the middleman costs, but you also run a higher risk of getting outdated or unethically sourced leads. 

Some providers will also continue to sell leads to you even if they don’t have a program that fits your needs. That leaves you with target-adjacent leads that probably won’t turn into buyers, but still cost money. Make sure you have some kind of service-level agreement with your provider, and set clear expectations for accuracy and funnel stage.

Top Lead Generation Companies

top lead generation companies: DiscoverOrgDiscoverOrg advertises human-verified data, up-to-date org charts, and contact profiles that are updated every 60 days. All of this comes in its own platform, connected to your current CRM and/or marketing tools. So, in addition to getting verified contacts, you won’t have to spend your time copy-pasting the data from one place to another.

DiscoverOrg specializes in IT, Finance, Marketing, Sales, C-level, and HR contacts for both sales efforts and recruiting campaigns.

top lead generation companies: RainKing

RainKing provides a data search interface with access to leads of all types, with the promise of lead discovery based on your existing lists. One of RainKing’s best selling points is that they verify all data every 60 days.

RainKing operates with a strong focus on client success, including 24 hour support and a promise of a 10 min response time to all requests. They also offer on-demand research, using internal teams to go after the data you need to make the sale if it isn’t already listed in their database. The Inside Scoops platform gives you helpful marketing information to personalize messages to the needs of the client; these can be viewed in your dashboard or sent to your email when they arrive.

lead generation companies: callbox

Callbox uses a large proprietary database plus outreach, lead nurturing, and pipeline tools to help you connect with the right leads. Campaigns can begin in as little as two weeks from initial contact.

Callbox gives customers access to a private CRM and marketing automation tool, Callbox Pipeline, to help you reach and track your prospects. SMART (Sales and Marketing At the Right Time) call scheduling and analysis prompts sales teams to call leads at the best time, according to data gleaned via algorithm.

Netline is a B2B content syndication provider that offers self-service, full-service, and advanced lead generation programs, depending on your needs. Clients can use Netline’s campaign dashboards to keep an eye on their performance in real-time and make adjustments to content, targeting criteria, or strategy. 

The company also offers services for publishers looking to monetize their website traffic or offer more relevant content to a target audience. You can build Netline’s native advertising tools into your digital properties and generate revenue for qualified leads who download content. 

lead generation companies: TechnologyAdvice

You knew we would include ourselves, right? TechnologyAdvice has a proprietary database of over 46 million contacts and powerful data mining tools to find the right contacts for your sales teams. Our leads are so good that other many other providers actually buy our leads to resell to their own clients.

TechnologyAdvice differentiators: 

  • Proprietary database of 46 million records
  • US-based call centers with native English speakers
  • Domestic and international capabilities
  • Dedicated client success manager
  • True cost-per-lead pricing

We believe lead generation is a partnership, where we act as the data and prospecting arm of your existing sales team. To support this partnership, we won’t sell you a program if we think ours services are a bad fit, and we take full responsibility for lead accuracy: if we don’t provide accurate, up-to-date contact information, we’ll replace the lead(s) for free. TechnologyAdvice offers specialized programs for TOFU, BANT, and Highly Qualified Leads, predictive scoring, nurturing, account-based marketing, and more.

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At the end of the day, what’s most important is finding a lead gen provider with a proven track record, whose programs align with your sales and marketing needs. That might be us, or it might be one of our competitors. If you’re still in the research stages, deciding whether or not to outsource and where to invest your budget, check out some of our blog resources for demand gen marketers: 

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