If you’re setting up a lead generation agency but aren’t sure how you’ll sell your leads to buyers, you’re in the right place.

In this article, we’ll answer all of your questions about how to sell your leads, including everything from whether it’s legal to do, how to find your lead buyers, clauses around reselling leads, how to acquire clients and leads using cold email, and more.

  1. What is Selling Leads All About?

  2. Do Companies Really Want to Buy Leads from You?

  3. Is it Legal to Sell Leads?

  4. How to Sell Your Leads: A Step-By-Step Process

  5. How to Use Cold Email to Build Your Client Pipeline

If you’re looking for a start-to-finish overview of how to set up a lead generation agency, read our guide here.

Let’s dive straight in.

What is Selling Leads All About?

First, let's clarify what we're talking about in this article. A lead is someone showing interest in a product or service. Your own business will have leads, for example, someone who filled out an inquiry form or booked a meeting on your calendar. 

Other businesses have leads too, and when we’re talking about selling leads, that’s what we mean.

If you have a reliable way to generate leads that another company would be interested in buying from you, it's an excellent way to make money, and thousands of successful B2B lead generation agencies have been created by selling leads to other businesses.

Do Companies Really Want to Buy Leads From You?

Companies will happily pay you for your leads — if the leads are qualified and a good fit for their business.

You may be able to sell different types of leads based on the purchase intent the lead has for your client’s product or services:

  • Top of Funnel Prospects, not interested in buying yet

  • Qualified Leads who have shown some intent to engage

  • Sales Qualified Leads, ready to buy

Buyers will be happy to pay a premium for highly qualified leads who have shown clear purchase intent and are therefore likely to convert. Other buyers will also be willing to pay you for a basic prospect list (as long as the prospects match the criteria they’re looking for), but as you’d expect, they won’t pay a high premium for that.

A key part of this process is finding an industry where buyers will be willing to buy leads from a lead seller or lead generation agency. Look for industries with high contract values and where there’s high competition for customers.

Is it Legal to Sell Leads?

Always make sure you're processing lead data in a way that's compliant with laws wherever your business and your lead buyers are based.

Even if you think you’re in the clear, we’d always recommend reviewing the laws and rules that might apply to your lead gen activities before investing too much time or money into your new venture, even if it means booking a meeting with a lawyer familiar with the laws associated with sales, marketing, and lead generation as a business. 

Laws like GDPR, CAN-SPAM Act, and CASL will all be worth reviewing to ensure you stay compliant with key regulations.

You don't want your business or your clients’ businesses to be liable for any legal issues.

How to Sell Your Leads: A Step-By-Step Process

1. Establish Your Industry and Niche

The first step to selling leads is finding clients willing to buy your leads. To do that, you’ll need to focus on a clear niche or industry that makes sense based on your skills and knowledge.

A common way to niche down your agency is to find a type of business that you can generate leads for, such as real estate agents, software development agencies, or another business that typically has high contract values and a service offering that’s in demand.

Ideally, you’ll also want to make sure the clients you’re targeting have their own established sales funnel and can close clients. 

If they can’t close the leads you send them, your client might blame that on your lead quality, and that’s not a situation you want to be in.

To make your prospecting more effective, it’s also a good idea to add another criterion to your ideal customer type, such as:

  • Location

  • Company size

  • Their type of customer

So, for example, you might target software development agencies in Los Angeles with an average contract value of $30,000.

The more detailed you are with your ideal customer profile, the easier it will be to build a prospect list of people to reach out to.

2. Deciding How Much to Sell Leads For

Ultimately, there’s no single answer to how much you should charge.

As we looked at in our Ultimate Guide to Starting a Lead Generation Business, some industries are more lucrative than others. 

For example, it costs companies in the insurance industry approximately $54 for a single click on Google Ads, and attorneys pay around $47 per click.

If you have a way to generate high-quality leads for companies in those industries without them needing to spend thousands on ads, you’ll have a line of clients waiting to purchase the leads from you. 

Typically, lead generation businesses charge per lead, for example, $350 per lead generated. But, the price you can charge will vary depending on your industry. If you know your clients will be willing to pay more as they operate in a competitive market, then you can charge more.

The value of a lead will also depend on the lead information you’re providing.

For example, if you’re only providing buyers with a contact email address for the lead, it’s not that useful.

On the other hand, you’ll be able to charge a premium if you’re providing lead buyers with information like:

  • Full contact details

  • Details on past engagements

  • Details on the services the lead needs

There are a lot of variables here, but make sure you don’t undersell your services if you’re offering leads that give your potential client a strong chance of landing new business.

As you’re providing a service, most business owners you engage with will be happy to pay slightly higher rates, but only if you make their lead generation process easier to manage every month.

3. Can You Resell Leads to Multiple Clients?

If you’re selling the same qualified leads to multiple competing businesses without the business owners being aware, it’s not a good look. You’ll annoy your clients as they are constantly fighting to close leads, and it’s going to reduce the chances of leads converting for all clients, making your leads look less qualified than they are.

That said, there are ways to resell leads to multiple clients, as long as it’s clear.

For example, options in your contracts could include:

  • Offering leads to one client for 7-14 days. If they haven’t closed it, you can sell the lead to a new client.

  • Offer leads to multiple clients at once for a discount, with all clients knowing the leads aren’t exclusive to them.

As long as you’re clear about your agreements with buyers upfront, you’re unlikely to encounter any problems here. 

4. Creating a Lead Distribution System

When your buyers purchase leads from you, they have an expectation of quality. They expect to be able to close some of those leads without too much problem.

Part of that process means delivering hot leads as soon as you can to your clients, giving them the best chance of closing them.

But, if you’re delivering leads you collected a month ago, those leads will have lost their purchase intent or already started talks with a competitor.

To avoid this, you need an effective lead distribution system. 

This could mean setting up a system on Google Sheets, and sending your clients an automatic email every time a new lead is added to the sheet after replying to one of your cold emails, or filling out a contact form. 

You can easily set a system like that up using Zapier. You could even do it manually, as long as you have crystal clear systems to ensure you never forget to send a lead to one of your customers.

As your agency grows, you can use dedicated lead distribution software, like LeadByte or CAKE, which do a similar thing but in a more polished way. They enable you to easily distribute your leads to multiple clients in real-time or on a schedule you set.

Source: CAKE

If you ensure your lead distribution processes are perfect, your lead buyers will have a higher chance of converting them into buyers and they’ll be happy to keep using your services.

How to Use Cold Email to Build Your Client Pipeline

The most effective way to engage with decision-makers at companies you want as a client for your lead generation business is to reach out with a personalized cold email.

You could spend weeks attending trade shows, going to local business events, or running expensive Facebook Ads for your agency. But, email is more direct, it’s fast, and it’s affordable — making it the ideal channel to find prospects to sell your leads.

If your email connects with a pain point someone is struggling with, such as growing their business, most people will be happy to reply and strike up a conversation.

Here’s a proven, step-by-step process to sell your leads using cold email to your prospect list.

1. Building Your Prospect List

The most straightforward way to build your prospect list to sell leads to is with an email finder like Uplead, Clearbit Prospector, or Anymail Finder

Source: Uplead on G2

The tool itself doesn’t matter, and most of them work in a similar way — scanning the internet for times your prospect has mentioned or listed their email address in a public location, such as on their website.

Most tools like these let you build prospect lists based on your exact criteria for a prospect:

  • Company size

  • Job title

  • Annual revenue

  • Number of employees at the company

  • Industry they work in

  • Email address or direct dial

They’re going to help you build a prospect list of people who will be a perfect fit to sell leads to in minutes.

If you’ve created your own prospect manually using a platform like LinkedIn, there are a variety of creative ways to source verified emails, so check out our guide to finding anyone’s email here if you need some help. 

2. Personalizing Your Outreach Emails

If you receive a generic email from a salesperson you don’t know, you’ll ignore it. On the other hand, if they’ve clearly researched you, your company, and the email relates to solving a pain point you’re currently experiencing, you’re probably going to reply to them.

To massively increase your reply rates, you can add a personalized opening line to every email you write.

For example, if you were emailing a CEO of a local company that recently opened a new store or office, you can mention that and congratulate them on the growth. It’s a small touch, but enough to prove you actually put effort into your cold emailing.

Format your opening lines in your prospect list and it will be easy to quickly upload these into your cold email software and automate your cold emails.

When you’re writing your email template in QuickMail, all you need to do is add your {{prospect.custom.Opening_Line}} attribute and it will automatically be added to your email.

3. Writing Your Email Template

There’s no single way to write a high-converting email template, but, here are a few guidelines to help you stay on the right track:

  • Make it about your recipient, not your business

  • Agitate a pain point you know they have — in this case, related to lead generation

  • Highlight social proof or a case study to build credibility

  • Use a simple call-to-action that’s easy for your prospect to reply to

In QuickMail you can also use attributes to add dynamic personalization. That means even if you send your email campaign and it contains a large number of prospects, each email that goes out can include:

  • The recipient’s name and company name

  • A personalized opening line

  • Any other custom details you need to include

The key benefit here is that you can write one email template and re-use it for multiple recipients without compromising on any personalization.

Here’s an example of what your template will look like (make sure to customize it to your own business and prospect list!):

4. Boosting Your Reply Rate with Automatic Follow-Ups

We analyzed almost 1.7 million email campaigns and found that 55% of replies come from a follow-up.

It’s critical that you send follow-ups to your potential lead buyers.

Rather than relying on reminders or a to-do list app, you can automate your follow-ups from QuickMail.

First, you’ll need to choose how many days you want to wait between your emails. 

Then, write your follow-up email. It can be simple, but make sure to keep it focused on proving why it’s worth your prospect talking to you.

If your prospect doesn’t reply they’ll receive a friendly reminder from you, and it’ll bump your name back up to the top of their inbox.

Generally, you won’t need to send more than 4-6 follow-ups before you get a reply.

5. Closing The Sale

No software or tool will close new business for you. 

As you’re dealing with decision-makers and business owners, you’ll need to arrange a call or meeting to learn more about their business and explain how you can help.

In every sales call, you need to make it clear what you can offer to leads and assess if they’re going to be a good fit for your services.

To reduce risk for your potential customers, you can always offer a money-back guarantee on retainer contracts or on leads that aren’t a good fit, shielding clients from financial risk if you don’t generate results or aren’t a good fit for each other.

If your value proposition is good, you have case studies to back up your successes, and your client trusts you as an expert, you’ll have a strong chance of winning their business.

Wrapping Up

Selling leads is a great business model. If you generate good results for a client, they’ll want to work with you for the long term and will be happy to pay you for the leads you generate.

The key is to set up effective systems that mean you can always be prospecting for new clients, as well as having time for your lead generation activities.

Cold email is an excellent channel to generate new leads, as well as to acquire leads for your clients. Using QuickMail you can easily automate your outreach, run campaigns for multiple clients - including your own agency - and track all the key metrics that matter to your campaigns. 

You can try out QuickMail with a free trial and see how it can help you start selling more leads to new clients.