We hope you had a chance to read our previous posts about getting ready for a trade show or event. Planning prior to the event is important, but it’s also important to do certain things while you are at the event.
Read on for our 5 tips on what to do before you leave a trade show…
1. Get Leads and Take Notes
It’s expensive to exhibit, so make sure it’s worth the money you put into your event by getting a lot of high-quality leads and jotting down all of their information. Depending on the size of event, you may end up talking with hundreds of people and it’s very unlikely that you’ll remember exactly what a certain person asked for. Ask everyone you meet for a business card and take notes on the back. That way, you’ll have all their contact information, with specific details on the other side.
Most shows also give you the option of renting a lead scanner, which allows you to scan an attendee’s badge. This is a very helpful tool and usually worth the investment. Some shows even have lead scanning apps that you can download right to your phone!
2. Schedule appointments
It’s fine to receive business cards from your leads and call them after the show, but it’s also great if you can get them to schedule an appointment to meet with you while at the event! Try to set an actual date and time to follow up with your potential customers. That way they can put it in their calendar right away and you’ll know that they’ll be free when you call them at that specific date and time. People are very busy and it’s much easier to follow up with someone after an event if they’ve carved out a specific time to talk to you.
3. Have a Raffle or Giveaway at your Booth
Having a raffle or a giveaway will help draw people to your booth. With so many different things going on and so many different booths for people to visit, you have a very short time frame to catch the attendee’s attention. A raffle or booth giveaway is a great way to drive traffic to your booth, and once they come by you can engage them on what you do. It doesn’t have to be something big; Promotional items, pens, and candy are all great giveaways that will get people over to your booth.
4. Walk around the Show Floor and Talk to Everyone
Another great way to engage people at an event is for YOU to go up to THEM. Walk up to someone and tell them what you do, hand them your business card and ask them to visit your booth for more information. You can also talk to other exhibitors and discuss how they think the show is going and how it compares to other shows. You can even try to think of a way that your two companies can work together (in a way that will benefit you both!)
5. Evaluate to see if you reached your goals:
In our previous blog post with Five Tips for Exhibitors, we talked about setting clear goals for what you want to achieve at an event – i.e. building your brand, educating your booth visitors, reaching new customers, etc. Did you accomplish the goals that you set out to meet? Did you collect as many leads as you had hoped to?
It’s important to determine whether your goals were met in order to figure out if you should exhibit at the same event again next year. Figure out the amount that you spent on the show and then how many leads or sales you got afterward to figure out if the event was worth it. If you received a lot of revenue from the event, it’s probably worth it to exhibit again. If not, maybe your next year’s event budget should be used to attend a smaller, local trade show instead.
After the event…
Follow up with your leads. Most important of all: Get back to the leads you collected during the trade show and do it right away! You put a lot of effort into talking with people at an event, and you want to make sure that you follow up with them in a timely manner.
Follow up with a phone call to schedule a face-to-face appointment within one to two weeks after the show.
Check out our other posts for more helpful event tips:
- 5 Tips for Exhibitors – Make Your Next Event a Success >>
- You Spend a Lot on Your Booth – Lights Bring it to Life >>
- Get Your Booth to Stand Out at an Event >>