Contact List Provider or Lead Generation Services – It Depends on What You Need

a guy looking for sales leads online

Not all leads are equal.

That’s why those in B2B advertising who decide to buy leads instead of developing campaigns to generate them, or else to pad out their existing list of contacts are warned against being too trusting of establishments claiming to provide quality leads.

It’s also understandable that companies looking for, say, a contact list provider will have a hard time doing so, mainly because there are more than a few of them.


Throw in the “not all leads are equal” issue, and things can get a little more complicated.

Fortunately, there are a few things you can do to make choosing the right vendor and finding those leads easier.

Here’s a brief overview.


  1. Define what you’re looking for.

Your definition of a lead won’t necessarily fit with all companies’ definition of the same.

The general definition describes a company or entity that will be able to use your product, has need for it, and is interested in offers.

The specifics, however, will change depending on if you’re looking for a company that fits a certain profile, or a contact person – or persons.

If you’re looking for a list of contacts, then you’re not looking for leads – those who have somehow showed a need for your product or service and indicated interest in hearing from you.

This can be trickier to deal with when it comes to advertising campaigns, but not impossible.


  1. Conduct your search.

Once you have a better idea of what you’re looking for, then you can look for potential vendors to provide it.

For example, you’re looking for decision makers in a particular industry.

So you wouldn’t look for a telemarketing service, or a company offering appointment setting services; you’d be looking for list providers, since these can give you custom lists built around your parameters.

Defining what you’re looking for will also help you give your chosen list provider said parameters, from industry to company size, to job title or level, to revenue.

While narrowing the list down doesn’t guarantee you’re calling someone in the market for what you offer, you’ll at least get in touch with someone who might be interested later on.


  1. Make sure the vendor is selling, not renting.

There are vendors who offer contact lists only for rent, rather than for sale, so make sure you read carefully.

Otherwise, you might not be able to carry out your campaign properly.

Besides not being able to see the names on a mailing list rental, you won’t be able to contact them more than once, defeating the purpose of the list in the first place.


At this point, you should have a very short list of vendors to choose from; whether you choose a contact list provider or a company will – again – depend on what you’re ultimately looking for to help your campaign along.