Stop the Lead Generation Madness! Or the Government Will Do It for You!

By LeadsCouncilAugust 12, 2015

Lead generation is changing. With the FCC, FTC, CFPB, DOE, Retail Advertising Federation, and States Attorney’s Generals increasing scrutiny of the day-to-day practices associated with lead generation companies, we are in need of better practices. LeadsCouncil is changing to take a direct role in moving the lead generation industry in a responsible direction. Lead sellers and buyers who share this vision of a more responsible lead generation industry need to get involved!

During the past 15 years, we have seen arbitrage, bait and switch, lead dumping, redirects, direct mail list leads, false and deceptive advertising, a lack of transparency, and flat out misrepresentation used as tactics to supply leads to the Insurance, Mortgage, Education, and Pay Day Loan industries, to name a few. How long can this process last? How long can businesses in a mature market get away with misleading their clients?

Because of these practices, we now have clients who make a habit of returning or disallowing leads and then convert them into sales for their companies. The funny thing is most lead generators know it and do nothing about it. Rather, they build it in to their business model and turn a blind eye to the corruption. How long can clients steal from lead generators?

As we take a look at the many scandals that have transpired over the years in other industries, we find they are created by greed, arrogance, and unaccountable cultures that thrive on distrust and chaos only to fall when government regulation comes in to clean out the corruption. We are no different in lead generation. Our day is coming but we still have time to change our course. Will it be overnight? No way. We as industry leaders need to be the agents of change. We need to legitimize lead generation and take it from a place of distrust and common dishonesty to a place of respect on all levels. We can do it, or the government will step in and do it for us.

We have the means and the vehicles to make moves to self-regulate ourselves. We can show the lead generation industry that we are responsible and we will not stand for businesses to corrupt our space.

LeadsCouncil is stepping in to help. It is necessary for this industry to have a central point of focus when tackling this issue. LeadsCouncil will play the role of conduit to a variety of groups: Government, buyers, sellers, associations.

During the past 5 years, the LeadsCouncil has made strides to promote lead generation and lead buying best practices to its 400+ members. Moving forward, the LeadsCouncil will continue to provide these best practices, but now in parallel with a new initiative to help serve the industry on a broader level. We are evolving LeadsCouncil to better serve all sellers and the buyers they serve.

LeadsCouncil Mission Statement
To educate and advocate on behalf of the buyers and sellers engaged in all forms of lead generation, ensuring that all participants deliver value and follow ethical as well as federal and state guidelines when conducting their business.

LeadsCouncil Goals

  • Help create better relationships between buyers and sellers.
  • Establish guidelines and standards for all lead generators and buyers to follow.
  • Be seen as an educational and informational resource for the industry.
  • Establish relationships on Capitol Hill ensuring the lead generation space is heard as it pertains to rule making.
  • Educate our constituency on all aspects of lead compliance, measurement, and management.
  • Self-audit and remediate with both buyer and seller members.

The LeadsCouncil has formed a new working Board of Directors to complete these tasks. Please join me in welcoming the following industry leaders to this group.

  • Bruce Cook, Tree.com                  
  •  Erik Josowitz, All Web Leads
  • Ethan Ewing, Bills.com                                                                                  
  • Joe Marinucci, Digital Media Solutions
  • Michael Ferree, The Online Lead Generation Assoc.                       
  • Joe Laskowski, Higher Ed Growth
  • Gregory Gragg, Blue Chair LLC                                                   
  • Cory Smith, Access Intelligence

With this new initiative, we will strive to do something good for the space. Yes it will be hard work, but if you believe in creating an honest fair marketplace, then get involved in the new LeadsCouncil.  Be part of the generation that can change this space for the better.

The new board will be addressing members and LeadsCon attendees at LeadsCon New York later this month.

If you are not a member of LeadsCouncil, call today 619-618-1200 or email Michael Ferree, mferree@leadscouncil.com and become part of this new initiative. 

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