How to Compare Lead Generation ToolsRieva Lesonsky
You know lead generation software can help your business get more leads, get better leads and cut costs. You’ve even narrowed down your options to a few different lead generation tools. But now what? How do you choose the right one for your business?
To make your final decision about lead generation products, it’s important to do a close comparison. Follow these steps to compare lead generation tools.
4 Steps to Lead Generation Software Assessment
Step 1. Compare features. Start by making a list of the lead generation and management features that are “nice to have,” along with those you must have. For example, 66% of marketers say the ability to send relevant, targeted communications to leads is a top benefit of lead generation and management tools. And since two-thirds of messaging takes place on a mobile device (compared to just 11% on a desktop), a lead generation product with robust mobile capabilities is key for most business owners.
Once you've got your list in hand, collect spec sheets and other data regarding the features of the lead tool with tools you're considering, and do a cross-comparison. If a product is missing an essential feature — say, the ability to notify you of leads in real time — you can cross it off your list.
Step 2. Get feedback from users. Check online review and ratings websites to see what other users are saying about the lead generation software you're considering. To get the most meaningful opinions, look for detailed reviews by small business users who are from your industry and have similar needs and concerns when it comes to lead generation.
For example, if you own a flooring company that caters to consumers, a B2B company's opinion of a lead generation tool won't be as useful as one from another home services company. If possible, try to reach out and talk to other users in person to get their insights. Don't forget to tap into your social media contacts and see if any of them have used the product.
Step 3. Consider costs. The lead generation software that appears least expensive upfront may have hidden costs, so be sure to consider the true cost of ownership. What are the costs to get up to speed in using the product? How about ongoing costs such as fees for updates? Ultimately, you'll want to assess the projected new revenues the product can bring and balance them against costs to come up with an accurate assessment. In addition, if the product can replace other software products you're currently using, it could save you money in that way. (Learn more about the benefits of all-in-one marketing solutions.)
Step 4. Investigate support. What type of customer support does the product you're considering offer? For a small business with a lean staff, the ability to access ongoing support and contact a real person with questions can be invaluable.
Making the Lead Generation Software Decision
As you finalize your selection of lead generation software, be sure to involve others in your business who will be implementing and using the product. Getting their opinions before choosing the product will make them more likely to embrace it.
Finally, once you’ve got your lead generation software in place, make sure to measure the right metrics to assess your results. This will provide proof of how well your chosen solution is paying off for your business.