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Written by Ninni Arion

Ninni Arion is the CEO of Wulff Entre and a Sales professional who has over 18 years of experience working in the trade show industry. Global events have taken her from the East to the West. She has experience in the field as an event organizer, exhibitor, trade show manager, and event service provider. She has a positive and enthusiastic personality and a passion for helping people.

Have you remembered to follow up on your trade show leads?

It’s unbelievable, year after year, the surveys say over 70% of the trade show leads will not be followed up after the show. Why? This continues to amaze me.
Companies spend a great part of their yearly marketing budget on planning and executing trade shows. We plan, invite our contacts, travel, mingle and spend time and money onsite at the trade shows. After all of these investments, if we believe the surveys, many contacts will remain uncontacted after the show.

Have you calculated the trade show cost per lead?

Even scarier is to calculate the cost per lost lead, because of lack of contact. Too expensive.

What is the most common reason for not following up?

It cannot be technology – there are hundreds of apps, systems and ways to collect the visitor information and follow up. I think the biggest reason is simply laziness, we all have a tendency to blame busy schedules. We are just too “busy”. So busy, that we forget to do the most important action after the show. “Thank you” – and follow up call or message.
But don’t worry, I have some good news! Follow up work is not difficult nor expensive. It is a fun part of sales!

Make it into a routine and grow your business with these tips:

  1. Collect the business cards at the end of each trade show day and split them into 3 different piles: Urgent / interesting / not so important. Also, remember to write down the main points of your discussion.
  2. Add your urgent and interesting contacts to your LinkedIn with an “it was nice to meet you today” message.
  3. After the show, send a short message with a summary of your discussion. Remember to ask for the next step!
  4. You can measure the trade show cost efficiency by comparing your total trade show spend / quality lead to the cost of visiting each of those leads. Improve your ROI each time!

Bonus Tips

*** Add a photo of you at your booth to your message! Then your guests will remember who you are and what you talked about at the show!
*** Make it a contest with your colleagues, who will collect the biggest amount of quality leads! Salespeople love contests and a little award will make us run even faster. The only contacts that count, are the ones that have been followed up!
Good luck and have fun on your next trade show follow up!


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