Why Lead Sourcing is More Efficient than Lead Generation

Leads is a real treasure for every sales guy and marketer, especially for those who knows how to convert them efficiently (but that’s a different story). Anyway, almost no sales team or even a single specialist can work without leads successfully, so “how to get more leads” is the first question that comes up when the sales/marketing process is set up.

Leads can get into your CRM (or any other tool) from lead sourcing or lead generation. Some specialists may say it’s the same thing, but that’s far from the truth.

Lead generation is a marketing process, when marketers actually acquire leads from campaigns. The main goal of lead generation is to capture leads with the help of marketing campaigns — this can be done with inbound marketing, paid traffic, social media, and more. The goal of these campaigns is to capture as many targeted leads as possible. As you can understand, it could be expensive (it’s almost never free) — it takes time and money to create campaigns, set them up, run and optimize them. Also, the more rich leads with more information you want to capture — the more expensive one lead is.

Lead sourcing is the process of collecting leads, so basically list of leads is built without any marketing activities. This can be done by sales specialists or with the help of freelancers. Lead sourcing is based on finding the source of targeted leads, and extracting them into a spreadsheet or directly into CRM system. The quality and quantity of lead information is defined and sometimes limited by the source, but finding a good source is not that hard, so it’s not a problem to source leads with names, phone numbers, addresses and more.

As you can see the biggest distinction of lead sourcing from lead generation is that lead generation takes time, money and human resources to generate leads, while lead sourcing usually takes less time, less money (or even no money at all) and you can usually source more leads that can be generated in the same period of time.

There are few lead sourcing methods available. Of course, they have their own pros and cons. Let’s review few main methods below.

  • Manual lead sourcing. This method is the cheapest, as it usually costs nothing to find an online source and then manually go through the listings and extract all the necessary information into a spreadsheet. Even a single person can source hundreds of leads within a day — that’s more than enough for a small sales team. On the other hand, it’s limited by human resources. If one person sources 100 leads a day, you need at least three specialists to source up to 500 leads daily. Long story short, you scale with adding more people to the process.
  • Automated lead sourcing. Probably the one of the most interesting lead sourcing methods, and the most popular one. Automated lead sourcing is based on lead sourcing tool/software, that can extract lead information from various sources. The more advanced lead tool is, the more sources it covers. Good lead sourcing tool extracts more than just emails, but also names, positions, phones, companies and more. Such tools may vary from $10 to few thousand a month, and Snovio is a real good example of an outstanding lead sourcing tool, that allows to get 5000 leads for as low as $50. Isn’t it beautiful?
  • Lead purchasing. This is the most expensive, but the fastest lead sourcing method. Actually it’s as simple as it can be — you just buy leads from the vendors. These can be trusted and established companies, or some guys that sell mass email lists. Of course, you should aim on trusted sources only, as they provide leads of decent quality, that are enriched with additional information (such as company size, social profiles and more). The focus moment here is that you have to pay $1–5 per one lead from a trusted vendor.

As you can see automated lead sourcing it the champion — it’s cost effective and saves a lot of time, while getting you quite a lot of leads for just a few cents per lead.

Let’s summarize all the benefits of lead sourcing:

  1. Lead sourcing is way cheaper than lead generation. You don’t have to put money and time into marketing team and campaigns.
  2. Lead sourcing can provide you with bigger lists of leads. This is possible if you found a good source of leads that can be scrapped easily, or if you use a lead sourcing automation with the help of the tool.
  3. Lead sourcing is faster and more scalable. You can scale with adding more people to the process, or by automating it with the lead sourcing tool. Both of these options are still cheaper and faster than scaling of lead generation.

If time and money is not an unlimited resource in your company (just like in most companies, huh) then lead sourcing is definitely the best alternative to expensive lead generation processes.