Recently, a marketing representative for a residential lead generation service approached us with the most powerful “get attention” strategy available in the business. The service’s marketing/pr representative dropped the name of an association leader who has provided much business to us over the years.
The pitch: A comprehensive collection of data with the catchy headline: Most and Least Trustworthy Contractors in Canada Revealed.
It is a well-prepared report and for that, I will commend trustedpros.ca for some pretty solid marketing and business development.
But there is (to me) a big catch.Trustedpros.ca offers a leads service, and to get the actual actionable leads, after you sign up for the “free” service, you’ll need to pay a premium rate — and you can bet that you will risk your own search engine rankings and direct business to compete with others for bidding opportunities if you play this game.
And that disturbs me, because I cannot support the residential leads services out there that purportedly make life easier for contractors, but effectively capture the leads that should go directly to the successful and ethical businesses who understand and control their marketing directly.
Remember, “trust” is the foundation of your brand and while obviously it doesn’t hurt to have a third party ethically validate that you really are trustworthy, you should as much as possible control the process and ensure that your market visibility is yours — not the third-party service.
For some insights on how to do this, see Brian Javeline’s excellent resources. You’ll pay some money to him for the training and guidance, but you’ll retain ongoing control over your lead generation — and reputation.