What’s in a lead? Between aggregators reselling leads, marketers deciding where to focus their sales efforts, and the myriad of marketing platforms supporting both, it can be hard to judge the quality of a lead that lands on a salesperson’s desk. Working towards a more transparent lead marketplace has required twisting some publisher arms in the case of LeadiD, which positions itself as a grader and tracker of leads.
The company offers a “technological platform that resides at the point of origin where (lead) data is being entered,” said Ross Shanken, founder and CEO. "We issue an ID that is unique to that point in time, to that event, and track hundreds of variables about the origins of that event – the who, what, when, where, why and how that data got entered in the first place
Adding third-party tags to their websites hasn’t gone over well with all publishers, but many cooperate anyway in response to demand from marketers. Publishers “don’t necessarily jump up and down when they hear a third-party is going to add technology on their site and collect this data,” Shanken said. While in some cases it can be because a publisher has something to hide, more often Shanken said the hesitancy comes from wanting to protect proprietary business practices. One source lead seller who spoke with AdExchanger on condition of anonymity said the company's insistence on tagging all of its forms was initially off-putting and overreaching, but customer requirements led it to accept the tags anyway.
Still, Shanken said he’s managed to bring over 300 participating publishers into the LeadiD ecosystem. In part because marketers like Liberty University started analyzing their lead quality with LeadiD, and moving away from lead sellers that didn’t stand up to scrutiny or didn’t have the tags.
“Everyone that we’re working with has LeadiD tags on their page,” said Claire Diamond, associate director of strategic communications at Liberty University. “We made it a requirement a couple of years ago.” Diamond cited a “slow adoption” process from lead sellers that didn’t make the requirement realistic when she first started using LeadiD. “There was a lot of pushback in the industry. People were very scared of this technology at first not knowing what all would be displayed."
To date, LeadiD has raised $9.7 million, with $7 million coming in a late April Series A round.