Lead Generation Pricing: How Top Lead Generation Companies Price Services
Lead generation can take many different forms.
Buying lead lists, gating content, outbound sales, organic marketing, and content marketing are just a few examples. With each strategy behind lead generation comes several lead generation companies or agencies whose services aim to provide you with lead flow.
However, not all lead generation companies are created equal. There are vast differences in their lead generation pricing models and what they deliver.
We want to start this article with a warning: paying for leads can be dangerous. Buying leads from a shady provider and loading them into your lead nurturing software, like HubSpot, breaks the terms of service and can result in removal of your email functionality.
With that said, many lead generation companies are legitimate. So, we'll assume you will do your homework and only work ethically with companies that generate leads. Still, there's the question of how they will price their services and what you should expect to pay.
B2B Lead Generation Service Pricing
Lead generation companies generally charge a monthly retainer of $2,000 to $20,000. They may also charge an additional $50 to $400 per booked appointment, whereas other agencies will simply charge the appointment fee.
There are pros and cons to both of these models, which we'll cover below. But first, let's determine what a lead is.
Social Media Lead Generation
Social media is another outlet to generate leads. Businesses that post valuable organic content regularly on the social media channels their ideal customers use most often can build an engaged audience and attract visitors to their offers. B2B companies should consider building a following on LinkedIn, Facebook, and/or Instagram.
Many organizations utilize paid social media advertising to reach potential consumers. This model is typically priced based on a cost-per-click basis, meaning you pay for every person who clicks on your advertisement, whether relevant or not.
Social media can be an effective channel for targeting specific personas and generating valuable leads. The cost-per-click can range from $0.50 to $5.00 per click.
Appointment Setting Lead Generation
Lead generation agencies with a cost-per-appointment pricing model can be the most expensive and effective. Appointment-setting agencies are like outsourced business development representatives. These agencies target your ideal customer profile and directly generate meetings with your sales team.
Agencies like Alleyoop.io or DemandInc charge $2,000 to $20,000 per month. They typically charge an additional cost per appointment, ranging from $50 to $200 per appointment. These agencies will take more time to ramp up, as they'll have to adjust messaging and positioning and create company and contact lists relevant to your ideal customer profile.
RELATED READING: Lead Generation Services: 3 Things to Know Before Signing a Contract
Should You Buy Leads? One Size Doesn't Fit All
The problem with lead generation companies, for the most part, is that they are temporary. You might get the leads, but you're not attracting the leads - the lead generation company is. When you stop paying, you stop getting leads.
Think of B2B lead generation as a pipeline. When you pay a lead generation company to deliver leads, you rent their pipeline and have them turn the faucet on. When you stop paying them, they turn the faucet off. In this case, the cash you shell out for these services is not a long-term asset. The benefits don't live on after the cash is expended.
What happens if the B2B lead generation company increases its prices? You have to either pay more or get less.
DO NOT PAY FOR "LEADS." A contact who can't be your customer or has no interest in becoming one is worthless to you, so don't pay for them.
Only pay for MQLs or SQLs.
The inbound marketing methodology that used to work ten years ago is broken.
It used to be possible to nurture a generic lead through a complicated buyer journey through the funnel. It worked because consumers wanted it to be that way. They wanted to do extensive research before talking to a salesperson.
But things have changed. Inbound marketers have flooded the internet with nearly identical content. Consumers don't have time to sift through it all to find a solution. They want you to solve their problem fast. They're much more willing to talk to a salesperson early if you can show them that you have the best solution to their problem quickly.
The shift in consumer preferences is why we've pivoted from an Inbound Marketing Agency to an outsourced growth team. You can learn more about how we generate better leads for our clients here.
That shift is why we say don't pay for leads. If people are good prospects for your business, they'll indicate that much earlier than they used to. Your chances of nurturing a cold lead through a complicated buyer journey are too small to warrant the effort and expense.
RELATED READING: How To Align a Lead Generation Agency With Your Sales Team
A Lead Generation Model Designed for Long-Term Growth
Working with any sort of lead generation agency or service can be a great short-term solution to a lack of lead flow. This can help get sales pipelines going, and drive results while you begin to build or develop a long-term strategy.
Balancing a long-term strategy with an immediate fix is the key to successfully working with a lead generation agency.
The downside is that it takes a lot of work, and most companies are used to paying for leads and calling it a day. They don't have the infrastructure or human capital to build a lead generation engine.
That's why you should consider hiring a growth team to build it for you. But, just like lead generation companies, growth teams also have a wide range of pricing models.
At Lean Labs, we help organizations build long-term sustainable growth through organic marketing and growth strategies designed for success. We'll help generate reliable, sustainable, and scalable growth through traffic, increased conversions, and website optimization.
Lead generation doesn't stop once you get the initial influx of leads from whatever service you work with, and creating a long-term plan to execute will help take you the next step of the way.
Our Growth Playbook will give you the tips and guidance you need to build a growth strategy designed to win.
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