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When is a lead worth $1,000?

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Heather Mikisch, publisher of Managing Automation since 2003, oversees the brand's integrated portfolio, including Managing Automation, managingautomation.com, the Progressive Manufacturing Summit and Managing Automation Research Services. She was previously director of business development for Thomas Publishing's EnterpriseSoftwareHQ.

Media Business: You've said you expect to get $1,000 a lead on your Web site in 2007. How will you do that?

Mikisch: We have an online product directory that lists 2,000 solutions and attracts 100,000 manufacturers a month. Our tool enables buyers to compare products side by side or find matches based on user-defined requirements. In 2007, we will be launching RFI [request for information] Express. Buyers who opt in will tell us their budget, time frame, the number of users they need to accommodate and the companies they want to hear from. We have provided the tools that enabled the buyer to get to this point, and we have a wealth of information on that buyer.This is a qualified lead.

MB: If a vendor is paying $1,000, how much could the sale be worth?

Mikisch: It could be multiple millions or it could be $50,000, but the average is about $150,000.

MB: But lead generation doesn't occur in a vacuum, does it?

Mikisch: Everyone is hot for leads right now, but that will change over the next year or so. Smart advertisers will see the value of a truly integrated program, but they will pick partners based on the strength of the total brand. Print is definitely part of that.

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