When you take sole responsibility for any endeavor upon yourself, there’s a lot at stake. But there are also many rewards to be gained, of course. Glenn Houck, co-founder of LeadQual, and Jerad Bjugstad, director of business development, lead acquisition at USAA Military Home, Life & Auto Insurance, discussed this topic at LeadsCon NY’s session: “Generate Your Own Leads –Success Stories Generating and Nurturing Your Own Leads.”
Houck pointed to industry concerns that the quality of leads is going down, yet the cost is going up. He noted that many brands are now seeking to take control of their own destiny to see what kind of leads they can generate on their own.
There are a few things you can do to be successful at it, Houck emphasized. Taking ownership of your brand equity is key. Building email lists is another, as is amassing customer and re-targeting data. But tracking your customer’s journey is becoming a big part of the mix he said, noting the new buzz phrase is: “data attribution.”
“You yourself know that not all customers are created equal,” said Houck. “Certain products may be different but you want high-quality customers – you don’t want cheap leads.”
In working with affiliates, many advertisers are willing to work on your terms, Houck pointed out. They may be sophisticated, but when you hold the data, you pretty much hold the cards.
As you are looking to generate your own leads, Houck advised trying to understand how all pieces of the pie, such as display, search, content, video and mobile, work together. “You need to unlock the value of your data in order to leverage it,” he said. You also need to test how and measure how things are working, like re-targeting, the database, social, display, email and telephone. And, Houck advised, this needs to be done on a continuous basis.
Bjugstad spoke about specific examples of how USAA’s took matters into its own hands because it wanted to explore volume through other channels. The USAA began to examine buying leads from lead aggregators and matching that against internal leads.
“[We found] that real-time self-generated leads have higher funnel metrics,” said Bjugstad. One strategy was to create a separate microsite to generate exclusive branded leads. This generated 82 percent of leads contacted and transferred to the USAA. Application and purchase pre-qualification resulted into a 33 percent conversion. For mobile, more than 65 percent of mobile leads were contacted and the application and purchase pre-qualification resulted in 44 percent conversion.
Taking control of our own online marketing can be risky but these examples show that it can pay off to generate your own leads.
This article is brought to you by LeadsCon New York.