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The Myth of Quality: How To Better Evaluate Franchise Leads

A couple of years ago, I wrote about why franchise lead quality doesn’t really exist in the way we normally talk about it. Today I want to explore a little more about why the myth of lead quality is so pervasive, and how franchisors can better evaluate franchise leads.

As I talked about in my previous article, lead quality is a super nebulous concept. We talk about it all the time in the franchise industry, but there’s not really a good definition of what it means.

Let’s begin by digging into it and see if we can identify some key features of good and bad quality leads.

What does lead quality mean?

One of the main things that makes it hard to define lead quality is the fact that there are several totally different types of franchise leads, but we use the same name to refer to all of them.

For example, portal leads and broker leads could not be more different. Portal leads are at the very top of the franchise sales funnel, and broker leads are near the very bottom of it. They’re both called leads, so no wonder it’s not easy to pin down what lead quality means!

What makes a good quality broker lead?

Since a broker lead is only introduced to you as a franchisor when they’re quite close to the end of the sales process, you should expect a pretty high level of interest, knowledge, and financial qualification. A good quality broker lead already knows a good deal about your brand, has been financially vetted, and has the intention to buy. They may ultimately end up buying one or more units with you, or with another brand, or possibly they will not move forward with a franchise at all. Regardless of whether they buy, your expectations of each individual broker lead you’re introduced to should be quite high.

For more in depth analysis of why  lead generation is not like the lottery, read our old post on the topic here.

What makes a good quality portal lead?

A portal lead is introduced to the franchisor at the very beginning of the sales process, so the expectations for each individual lead will be lower. With top of funnel leads, it’s more effective to evaluate quality for a large sample of leads.

A good quality individual portal lead has demonstrated interest in opening a franchise, and in your brand specifically. They should also be a match for your geographical and financial requirements based on the parameters you set for the portal. They should be delivered to you in real time as soon as they submit their request. And lastly, in the modern era you can expect that portal leads will have a valid phone number and email address where you can reach them.

For a sample group of good quality portal leads, the average franchise organization contacts about 26-28% of them. Some brands achieve a much higher contact rate, especially those using good automation to reach out quickly and effectively. But even so, a large portion of your top of funnel leads will never turn into conversations.

Does that mean they’re worse quality leads than broker leads? No! It means they’re higher up in the funnel.

That’s why it’s so hard to talk about lead quality. Portal leads are high up in the funnel, so by definition they will not all progress to the next step. Broker leads are low in the funnel, so they’ve already passed through all the prior steps before you meet them. That’s why you pay more for them, because the broker has invested the time and money to work them through the funnel before they get to you.

Luckily for all of us, the franchise lead generation industry has grown stronger and stronger over the last ten years.

We now use better technology than ever before, to ensure better results for our clients. FranchiseHelp has pioneered lead verification technology to confirm leads’ phone numbers in seconds, and matching technology to ensure leads only connect with brands they are qualified to open. With the now industry-standard tech and quality filters we use every single day, we get you the best top of funnel leads to fill your pipeline. But remember that they are top of funnel leads, and consider their quality accordingly.

(Read more about FranchiseHelp’s 25 Year Innovation Timeline to see the breadth of our frantech development!)

Why the myth of “lead quality” is so pervasive

Luckily for all of us, the industry has grown stronger and stronger over the last ten years. We now use better technology than we did before, to ensure better results for our clients.

FranchiseHelp has pioneered lead verification technology to confirm leads’ phone numbers in seconds, and matching technology to ensure leads only connect with brands that they are qualified to open.

But if you call us and ask us to send you “better quality” leads than we did last month, we can’t. We already have all our quality filters in place, and we’re working to get you the best leads we can 100% of the time. But remember that the leads we are sending you are at the top of the funnel, and judge their quality accordingly.

Ultimately, despite being a nebulous topic, teasing out the implications and applications of lead quality is still essential for helping you better evaluate your franchise leads.

Anna Flowers is the President of FranchiseHelp. Her dress making ability is high quality and not a myth.

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