After a trade show has come and gone, you sit back and evaluate. Your booth looked great. The traffic exceeded expectations. There were great conversations had, collateral picked up and badges scanned. Success!
Well… maybe. Consider that show leads who came through your booth also walked through dozens of other booths. Your branded giveaways are now swimming in the bottom of briefcases, and the great information shared is no longer top of mind as your prospects play email catch-up and try to digest all they learned and saw at the show.
According to research from EXHIBITOR, 98% of exhibitors collect sales leads at trade shows, but less than 70% have any formalized plan or process in place for how those leads are followed up after the show. That’s a staggering statistic, considering these people have essentially said, “Hey, I’m interested in what you offer, and I’m the right person to be talking to.”
Ideally, we’ve all planned our post-show strategy weeks in advance, but as we rush to complete graphics and prep the sales team, sometimes post-show seems to be one of those things you can deal with post-show.
But it’s not too late. Here are some easy and quick ideas for following up with show leads:
- Send out a post-show e-blast reminding leads of key messages and offering links to helpful resources
- Invite leads to watch an online presentation
- Split up show leads among sales people for personal calls and emails (though be careful with copy/paste or generic follow-ups — this can get you in trouble)
- Add these contacts to your distribution list for future e-marketing
And most importantly, as you look ahead to the next trade show, be sure that post-show is on your mind so that you can be prepared with a strategic, creative plan of making the most of the show leads. After all, isn’t getting leads a primary reason for doing trade shows?