Nick Powills: Guaranteeing Leads Sets Relationships up for Failure
Nick Powills: Guaranteeing Leads Sets Relationships up for Failure

Finding great leads is about quality over quantity.

‘How many leads will you get me?’ asked the business. 

‘As many as you want,’ says the agency.

<Three months later>

No leads or the same leads.

Are you kidding me? 

Stand-up if you have ever been sold this piece of garbage before? GUARANTEED LEAD GENERATION FOR $19.99. Ok, now sit back down.

Consider the buyer’s behavior (even your own buying behavior). The buyer takes their time. They read reviews. They do their homework. They get ready to buy and then they decide when they buy. Can you influence them? Of course. Influence, but not force.

Second, think about the true outcome you want. You want growth. Not leads. Growth. Growth is the victory. When you ask for leads, you may get garbage. If your goal is to make your team busy chasing leads who are underqualified or who don’t take calls, then great, go after crappy leads. But, if you want growth, then be smart about the process:

  1.  Set-up your ‘Why.’ Make sure this is clear when you go to whatever website you use for lead collection. If the message isn’t clear do you, fix it.
  2. Make sure your credibility is searchable. Leads search. They want to see your credibility. If you are selling a burger, they want your Yelp! reviews to be positive. If you are selling a franchise, they want to see the value proposition compared to that of other brands.
  3. Make sure the information is plentiful and where your biggest fans are. Whoever separated consumer and biz dev—dumb. Consumers drive sales because consumers validate.
  4. The value of PR is credibility. You have an outsider storytelling about your brand. BUT, the value of PR is not in the moment; it is in what you do with a story after it runs. Market the hell out of those logos that validated your brand.

I recently wanted to see if my mindset was nuts—especially since I had to deal with competition selling on the basis of “we’ll get you leads”, so I signed our agency up for the equivalent of lead generation services with a digital agency. I told them my goals for a year were four new clients, 10,000 books sold, and two paid speaking engagements. The cost for them to secure this was $5,000/month with a guarantee. Six months in, 0, 0, and 0 from this campaign. Thus, I validated my approach.

I believe in honesty. I believe in values. I believe in uncovering the story and coaching through the best possible operational process for storytelling distribution and lead management. I believe this gives brand the best shot at success.

I understand why businesses sell in B.S. guarantees—they have to keep the lights on. But at whose expense? 

Every single service provider should fight to give superior service, honesty and the best possible pathway to success. They should leverage best practices to impact other brands.

Don’t chase leads. Chase deals. Also, know that lead generation is not a unicorn—there is no one-size-fits-all plan because the DNA and value proposition of every brand is completely, 100% different.