How many people can really say that they come away from an exhibition knowing exactly how the results will be managed?
With the UK’s only trade exhibition for the window, door, conservatory and glazing industry, FIT Show, just around the corner, exhibitors really need to be thinking about the ‘aftermath’ NOW!
This time next week, the NEC will be a hive of activity with stand builds nearing completion; products and marketing tools ready and stand staff prepped and primed for the FIT Show three-day event (Tuesday 21 – Thursday 23 May). However, all that is meaningless unless you have a post-show plan.
Industry figures state that between 40 – 60% of leads generated at an event are never followed up! Begging the question, what’s the point? We have witnessed heads’ roll over such lackadaisical sales management. The entire exhibition becomes a cost rather than an investment…
So, what should you be doing?
The week after the exhibition is crucial. It’s the time when your plan will take shape. Yes, you will be tired and your inbox will need attention but don’t get bogged down with catching up. Before you know it, several weeks’ will have slipped by and the leads have gone cold.
Here are my top tips for being post-show ready.
Clear your diary and that of your sales team for the week after the show and arrange an early review of the leads. Make sure your office and field teams are aware that this is happening and that the week after (or at least a few days) is a continuation of the event and you are ‘out of the office’.
Make sure the leads are divided amongst the team. Those which are key contacts, urgent requests for quotes or simply ‘quick wins’ should be dealt with immediately. Even if this is just a courtesy call or email, you have continued your relationship from the show.
Geographical leads are easy to divide amongst your area sales teams but just as important, is the allocation of less urgent leads. These may be non-sales related and can be passed to administration staff for action.
Monitor all leads over the next few months. If you have a database, make sure contacts are frequently updated with notes, quotes and sales. Only then can your investment be analysed. From experience, it’s only after 9-12 months that your return on investment can be truly established.
Your stand needn’t be a one-hit wonder. Use your exhibition boards, products / product samples and graphics – they can make for handy additions to a showroom or can be shared with customers. Better this than gathering dust in storage facility, fast becoming out of date and often costing a small fortune to store.