A lot of press predicts the end of trade shows as B2B businesses gravitate to doing their research online and arrive at your web page for a fraction the cost of arriving at your trade show booth. But trade shows have one huge win for exhibitors, the audience is already distilled and when one of them asks to be scanned for more information they are doing what is the holy grail of online marketing; they are “opting in”.
When someone asks for their badge to be scanned for more info at a trade show you can email nurture them for months and months always leading off with “you are receiving this because you visited our booth”. Unsubscribe is much reduced.
But like a bucket of “inquiries” produced from your web page over time, knowing what to do with the bucket of inquiries from the trade show is the key. I said earlier “you get to nurture them for months and months”, this is usually lots of hard work, lots of phone calls and emails and such. Mostly we procrastinate about doing these activities by focusing on legitimate leads we have a good chance of getting business from. The vast majority of leads we get from trade shows leak out of the sales funnel (at which time we promptly spend more money to find new ones).
The answer to this problem is a new breed of software called Marketing Automation software, it is a must have for companies that go to trade shows. Bring home your big list, write three or four or six emails, an easy set up to schedule them out over one or three or six months, then fire and forget. The software will notify you as to who is most receptive to your message and engaged with your website; it will tell you who to call.
If you plan to go to a trade show or are thinking about going to a trade show, take a closer look at marketing automation software; put some very cheap and easy tools in your hands to get more biz out of that bucket you come home with.
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About Dayna Cosgrove
Danya is a creative professional specializing in web design and development, with experience in marketing, advertising, and graphic design.