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Does “Pay-for-Performance” Lead Generation Really Work?

Pay-for-performance lead generation, on the surface, is an appealing notion. The idea of selecting an outsourced agency to do your telemarketing for you—and only pay them for the appointments they actually provide. They assume all the risk, right? How can you beat that? But, in the real-world, business-to-business appointment setting is a very risky model.

No B2B lead generation program (no matter how well planned) produces overnight returns. There’s always a period of planning, testing, execution and measurement. With that reality, it takes some upfront training and management to get results. And with telemarketing personnel turnover so high and training so expensive, does this model really make sense? Particularly if the pay-for-performance telemarketing agent does not get immediate results, they are motivated to push unqualified appointments into the funnel to reach their quota commitment. This is why telemarketing leaves most B2B marketing and sales departments empty-handed and eventually causes a jaded feeling about pay-for-performance lead generation overall. The fact is that the model isn’t broken. But, it has changed and the market needs to change with it for a better result to occur.

Some things to think about before you pay-for-performance

  • Look at the process first and make sure to invest time to figure out the ROI.
  • Don’t rely on people only. Invest in scalable and automatic lead generation that will occur overtime, not overnight because if demand gen does work, you’ll be hiring more sales people and they in turn will need more and more leads.
  • Measure everything. The great thing about modern demand generation is the “digits are meant to measured”. Today I can launch a program and see everything that happens in real-time, based on the prospects behavior. Now that’s real demand being created!
  • Experience matters. This type of modern, digital lead generation is fairly new. Not everyone understands how to do it correctly, so do some due diligence and hire a team of marketers that are experienced and have shown real ROI results for other B2B companies.
  • Here, at True Influence, we’ve launched a new program called LeadPAC’s that deals with pay-for performance very nicely. To make this work we’ve partnered with the best-of-class data provider Jigsaw to create an almost limitless flow of sales-ready leads for our customers. For companies that sell to SMB and have a recurring need for higher quality lead flow, this is a great solution.

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