Editor’s Note: Just a reminder, I dont monetize TCPAWorld in any way. I dont get paid for mentions or content and I dont advertise or endorse products or services. My word carries way too much weight and I know that. But if I see something I think is a good idea, I talk about it to raise awareness and spark debate. I try to help everyone get to the right answer. That’s sort of my thing.
This has been an extremely interesting Leads Con so far.
So I’m socializing the creation of a new trade organization focused on BUYERS of leads–i.e. those with the greatest interest in seeing standards set to assure that fraud in the lead funnel (if there is any) is identified and stomped out and to establish certain best practices for the lead generation industry from the buyer’s perspective.
WAY more interest in this than I was expecting. Kind of overwhelming actually. I’m being pushed pretty hard to do it so… I think I might.
In the meantime, the other big threat to lead buyers–i.e. to direct-to-consumer sales folks–are abusive manufactured lawsuits. Particular TCPA lawsuits. You know, the folks who fill out a lead form and then say “it wasn’t me” just so they can shake you down in a fraudulent suit?
Sooooooo many of these lawsuits right now. In fact the fraudulent plaintiffs have become so aggressive that a coordinated counterattack is now inevitable.
I know of a couple of initiatives moving forward simultaneously, but the good folks at DNC.com look to be taking the lead. They just launched stoplitigators.com— and incredibly BRILLIANT concept that will allow folks to crowd source information related to claims being brought by the bad guys.
So, for instance, if you want to know HOW the bad guys are getting their numbers into your funnels and WHICH URLs and lead suppliers are picking up these numbers (i.e. who might actually be working with/for the dark siders) one way you could do that is have EVERYONE facing a demand/lawsuit from one of the knuckleheads pool their knowledge by sharing information about the claims/numbers/sources.
This sort of enhanced intelligence will likely lead to the identification of the bad guy’s tactics and help everyone to steer clear of these abusive lawsuits, even while we collectively work to identify and stamp out any limited fraud that might exist on the industry side.
Wouldnt it be funny if it turns out that the guys selling bad leads in the lead gen space were actually working with the professional litigants setting up TCPA suits?
Anyway, I am COMPLETELY in favor of efforts to stamp out fraudulent lawsuits–I helped pioneer the argument that these guys lack standing to sue and also helped engineer the fraud-based countersuits that are now so popular–and I love this logo that DNC.co came up with:
This thing is awesome. Sort of like the Czar’s visage looking right back at you right?
But stopping fraudulent lawsuits is only half the problem. The consumer experience also matters–and if standards aren’t set for the lead industry soon the regulators may determine that online leads are simply not enforceable at all. And that is a huge problem for consumers and industry participants alike.
Seems to me that lead buyers need to come together and set standards (best practices) on the number of times a lead can be sold, specific requirements on content size and website format, specific limitations on the content that can be used to bring consumers into a funnel and on non-disclosed multi-vertical leads, the required use of third-party authentication software, bot detection, etc.
I figured I’d then take those standards to the FCC for consideration and seek a safeharbor for any buyer that rely on such leads. That should limit the use of leads that don’t meet the standards, no? Plus it should destroy all of the “it wasn’t me” lawsuits the industry is faced with once and for all.
Yep. Czar. Saving the (TCPA) world. Again.
If you want a seat at this table give me a call. If you think its a bad idea give me a call too. I welcome all sides, as you know.
In the meantime check out stoplitigators.com!