What’s Your Cost per Lead?

Marketing is as much about number crunching as it is creativity – what’s your cost per lead?

Cost per lead

Yes it’s important to know your customer, what value propositions they are responding to, whether your ad creative evokes the right emotions etc. But really it’s all academic if you don’t know which of your marketing tactics are generating leads and customers, and at what cost.

Once you know how much each lead costs (CPL), it’s not too much of a stretch to work out what it costs to acquire a customer (CPA) too.

And those two numbers should be the cornerstone of your marketing planning.


If your marketing objective is simply to generate lead volumes, your tactic selection is likely to include those with the lowest cost per lead.

If your objective is to generate sales, your tactic selection is likely to include those with the lowest cost per acquisition.

These may not be the same.

You might get more leads from an email campaign, but if telemarketing generates more sales, that’s where the smart money will go. Even though it may eat up more of your budget.

After testing various tactics, messages and formats you will become more scientific with your planning too. Numbers from past campaigns will provide insight into the likely performance of future marketing.

Knowing your CPLs and your CPAs per marketing tactic is crucial. These numbers will enable you to define more impactful marketing plans and importantly, keep your boss happy.