It’s no secret what we think about trade shows – they generate valuable brand recognition and are the ideal platforms to generate sales leads that convert into sales. This last point is going to be the focal point for the article today. In the past half a year, we’ve discussed the finer points of drawing attention to yourself, which is the only surefire way to generate sales leads. Now we move a step further the customer funnel, in which we’ll lay out simple, yet effective strategies to increase the value of your leads by converting them into sales.
Your sales conversion rate is the sole metric, by which you judge whether your business trip has achieved its objective and justified all prior expenses. ROI is measured by the number of the sales numbers and the bigger the amount the better; so how do you strike gold every single time?
Research reveals a frightening truth about the efforts of trade show exhibitors – namely they do not chase after the leads they’ve spent thousands on to capture. The number soars up to 80% of overall sales leads remain uncontacted. If there’s one side to your business strategy you need to overhaul, it’s this – leave no possible prospect buyer without a call or an email. It’s often the most obvious tip that needs to be emphasized, because it’s easy to get lost in preparations and the process of securing sales leads to think about what happens after.
On this same note, we’re also adamant about presentation when reaching out to a sales lead. Conversion requires finesse to a certain point and a demonstration of your genuine interest to acquire someone’s business. Use of email templates is all good, but before sending it out add some details – the name and position of the person you’re reaching out, or any mention of previous conversations you might have had.
Initiating and then navigating massive correspondence chains is not a job for humans alone. Although following up is essential, there is no inherent promise every lead will convert, which is why you need to know how to select the right leads. An automated system that allows you to manage all the emails and shows you who interacts with your company will accelerate this process.
If an event organizer has done their job correctly, the event venue will overflow with companies all vying for the attention of buyers. In this highly saturated landscape, your booth area requires a visual advantage to compete with the rest for recognition. If your booth fades from memory fast, leads are far less likely to open emails or answer calls from your company.
Part of converting leads lies in how you’re able to engage with trade visitors and capture their attention. As an exhibitor, it’s your job to not let any good opportunities pass you by, so you need to remove any gaps in your booth experience. You have to be attentive in your interactions, not only to secure more sales leads, but also to show your level of commitment to all prospects. The right attitude and approach creates a lasting, strong impression.
Quantity is often boasted as the most important metric for success at a trade show. The more leads you capture it stands to reason that your percentage of actual sales also grows in proportion. This logic falls apart when you account for the quality of the sales leads. If you’re capturing bad leads, you’ve invested resources for a diminished return. It’s very important to identify what a good lead is for you and this comes from knowing what the right customer for your product is and what needs they require to be met.
By the end of a trade show, the average visitor will have listened to at least a hundred sales pitches and we guarantee they’ll blur in the end. Where you prepare prospects to convert into sales at your booth is to embrace a direct response strategy, wherein you do not talk at visitors, but have them interact with you. This strategy effective screens quality sales leads and gives you opportunity to focus on those visitors who are truly interested.
The biggest challenge always lies in how to obtain contact details and other information for the lead capture process. If you implement the previous step, you have a good base to build on top of and make an offer to qualified sales leads. It can be the promise of a white paper or special presentation, or even scheduling a meeting or a phone consultation. This way you both obtain qualified sales leads, but also bring them closer to sales conversion all the while offering value right back.