Business to business (B2B) trade shows can be a cost-effective means of gaining valuable face-to-face interaction with many qualified prospects. Most B2B companies have a reasonable expectation that sales revenue will result from participation at trade shows. Yet too often, experience has shown that for many leads from trade shows the timing is too early in the sales cycle. This experience may explain why business executives are constantly dismayed that so few leads are actually followed up by their sales departments. Trade show industry research indicates that 80-90 percent of all trade show leads are not followed up.
What the guide advocates is that in addition to using marketing automation in the promoting of attendance pre trade show, a trade show booth is analogous to a website for the large number of “inquiries” that exhibitors come home with:
- Most of these inquires are not ready to buy (95% according to the research)
- They have opted-in to receive more information (so they are ideal for email nurture campaigns)
- They need to be nurtured through a sales cycle so that in 3 or 6 or 9 months when/if they reach sales ready, the exhibitor is still top of mind
- They need sorting (scoring of their behavior) to weed out the ones who are, and who are not, worth inside/outside sales resources.
But also key is the takeaway that companies need to know who is visiting their website (marketing automation platforms like ActiveConversion identify anonymous company visits, as well as labelled individuals). The traffic that visits a company’s website directly after a trade show is often a key indicator of whom at the trade show they got some level of engagement with, especially if there are multiple visits from different individuals from the same company.
To download this eHow To Guide on why marketing automation can increase your trade show ROI, click here or on the image!