Show Me The Money Maximizing Tradeshow Roi

I hear it​ all the​ time: Tradeshows are a​ waste of​ time and money. we​ stand around,​ selling our hearts out,​ and what do we​ have to​ show at​ the​ end of​ the​ day? Nothing.

Well,​ that's the​ result you should expect,​ if​ you're like most exhibitors,​ and neglect the​ most crucial aspect of​ tradeshow participation: Follow Up.

What happens at​ the​ tradeshow is​ obviously import to​ your success,​ but equally important is​ what happens after the​ show ends. This is​ where most exhibitors drop the​ ball. Differentiate your company from its peers and wring the​ full value from your tradeshow participation. to​ truly benefit from all the​ hard work what went into exhibiting,​ must ensure that appropriate follow-up activities take place.

Follow Up Begins Before the​ Show

Research tells us that over 80% of​ leads gathered at​ tradeshows are never followed up. That's a​ phenomenal number,​ especially when each lead has the​ potential to​ generate profit for your company.

Why do so many leads fall by the​ wayside?

It's because show leads have a​ reputation for having no substance – they’re either just cold business cards or​ similar basic information imprinted on​ a​ company lead card. There's nothing there to​ give already busy professionals a​ reason to​ follow up.

Even if​ the​ salespeople do follow up,​ there's only so much they can learn from a​ business card or​ bare bone information. For salespeople to​ view leads as​ being worthwhile for follow-up,​ they need quality information.

For this reason,​ it​ is​ vital that before the​ show you spend time going over the​ lead collecting process. Clarify exactly what types of​ information should be recorded on​ lead cards. Explain the​ importance of​ the​ information you are gathering. Make sure everyone knows exactly how to​ operate the​ card readers and use the​ printouts and lead cards.

Everyone working the​ show should know exactly what results you want to​ achieve at​ the​ various tradeshows you attend. Each show should have its own set of​ specific,​ clear,​ quantifiable,​ realistic goals. These goals should be in​ line with your company’s overall marketing objectives.

These goals give staffers something to​ strive for,​ but they also serve as​ benchmarks to​ evaluate and measure team and individual performance.

Develop a​ Follow Up System

To achieve and perhaps surpass your specific goals,​ you need a​ follow up system. the​ best time to​ develop your follow up system is​ during the​ planning and training stage.

Use this time prior to​ the​ show establish how the​ leads will be handled. For example,​ select a​ team member to​ take responsibility for collecting all "hot" leads at​ the​ end of​ each day and overnight them to​ the​ home office for immediate processing. Assign someone at​ the​ home office as​ a​ “follow-up” manager. This person takes charge of​ the​ entire follow-up process and should be someone who does not attend the​ show. Their job is​ to​ carry out the​ follow-up system that was established before the​ show.

Timeliness is​ of​ essence with all leads,​ not just the​ "hot" ones. Obviously you're not going to​ overnight every single lead back to​ the​ home office,​ but there are steps you can take to​ ensure you stand out from the​ crowd of​ exhibitors.

It is​ important to​ send something,​ such as​ a​ letter,​ email,​ or​ broadcast fax,​ to​ everyone who came by the​ booth to​ thank them and let them know when they can expect to​ hear from your company again. This should be done within three to​ five days after the​ show. Remember,​ if​ you don't follow up,​ your competitors will.

The Next Step: Accountability

Use contact management database programs to​ ensure your sales staff get leads that are as​ complete and useful as​ possible. Then,​ after leads are distributed,​ hold your account representatives responsible for the​ results.

There should be a​ written progress report from each salesperson at​ regular,​ predetermined intervals. This information can be used to​ track their performance,​ sales made,​ etc.
Some companies use performance in​ lead follow up as​ one factor in​ a​ salesperson's annual performance review. Knowing that they will be held accountable for results is​ a​ powerful motivator.

Measuring Results

At the​ end of​ the​ day,​ management wants to​ know their money was well spent. Keeping track of​ your leads will allow you to​ measure sales directly attributable to​ your tradeshow participation. Recording this data will allow you to​ provide qualitative and quantitative analysis of​ the​ show.

For example,​ you can calculate the​ return-on-investment to​ demonstrate to​ management the​ effect tradeshows have on​ the​ bottom line. to​ measure the​ cost per tradeshow lead,​ simply divide your total show expenditure by the​ number of​ leads gathered. to​ measure the​ cost per sale,​ divide the​ total show expenditure by the​ number of​ sales.

Qualitative data,​ such as​ types of​ prospects who visited the​ booth,​ dates and times of​ their visit,​ products/services of​ interest,​ buying intent,​ and results of​ any pre-show promotional activity often proves invaluable when planning future show participation.

The key to​ tradeshow success is​ wrapped up in​ the​ lead management process. it​ starts with knowing at​ the​ outset what you want to​ achieve,​ then continues through establishing a​ strategy that is​ user-friendly,​ and finally the​ actual follow-up operation leads to​ bottom-line profitability. With a​ little forethought and planning the​ results will speak for themselves.

You Might Also Like:

Powered by Blogger.