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  • Jun 16, 2023
  • Write by Author Name
  • Jun 16, 2023

Top Tips for Making the Most of Your Trade Show Follow-ups

Conducting customer follow-ups after a successful trade show exhibit is crucial for capturing leads and creating lasting relationships. Continuing communication will solidify connections and guide potential leads through your marketing and sales funnels.

Follow-ups are especially important if your business is heavily reliant on new relationships or if you’re launching a new product. It’s also a great way to stay in touch with existing leads and build on the relationships you have created.

Professional networking extends beyond just an initial connection. Even if someone isn’t necessarily part of your target demographic, building professional relationships will expand your network and give you access to other industry leaders and experts.

Additionally, following up with these connections after a trade show ensures a good impression on an individual and company level. It’s a great way to put your brand’s best foot forward and enhance your reputation.

Here are our top tips for making the most of trade show follow-ups:

Start With a Plan

Long before the event, formulate a detailed plan that outlines how you’ll capture leads and contacts from the show, who will manage them in your post-show follow-up process, and what tools you’ll need to execute it. 

This plan should also include your budget for booth design, exhibit rental, and other expenses associated with the event.

Send a Follow-Up Email ASAP

Sending a follow-up email within one or two days of the trade show is an essential first step in staying in touch with new contacts and solidifying relationships. The email should be personalized and give the recipient a brief overview of who you are, what your company does, and how you can help them.

Align Sales and Marketing Teams

Organize a meeting with your sales and marketing teams to discuss how they can best leverage customer leads from the show. Your sales staff should have all the collaterals to secure as many leads as possible. And your marketing team must launch post-show lead nurturing campaigns. The combined efforts of these two teams will go a long way.

Segment Contacts & Leads

When it comes to lead generation, the old adage “the more, the merrier” applies. It’s important to segment your contacts to enhance your lead nurturing strategy and ensure personalization. 

Once you have a complete list of attendees and exhibitors at a trade show, for example, you can start segmenting potential leads according to the following:

  • Removing unqualified contacts
  • Earmarking relevant decision-makers
  • Categorizing contacts by location, industry, business size, or sale probability

Aside from segmenting trade show contacts based on the list of participants, you’ll also want to group your leads into the following:

  • Cold – reach out within two or three days after the show
  • Warm – email within two days and call after sending the email
  • Hot – send leads through the sales team

Personalize Follow-Up Conversations

Whether you’re reaching out via LinkedIn, Facebook, or email, you must personalize your message by mentioning specifics from your conversation during the trade show. Follow-up communication should also come directly from the sales representative or booth staff they met at the show. This will solidify your connection and show that you pay attention to detail. 

Also, when reaching out via email, use your personal work email instead of a team or department email like “[email protected]” or “[email protected].”

Offer Exclusive, Value-Adding Content to Trade Show Connections

When you follow up, be sure to offer additional information that will engage your leads and attract them to your products and services. You can offer exclusive discounts, tailored content pieces, webinars, whitepapers—whatever you think would best serve their needs.

Leverage LinkedIn Ads

On LinkedIn, you can use your trade show list to target pay-per-click (PPC) ads based on company or email address. Use LinkedIn Matched Audiences to upload your list of at least 300 contacts to begin targeting.

Publish Event-Related Content

Write and publish a series of articles about your trade show exhibit after its conclusion. You can summarize or report on the topics that were discussed, your trade show experience, and other important takeaways. 

If you don’t have a website or blog, you can post the content on networking platforms or social media channels as a series. You can then include links to these posts in your follow-up emails.

Keep Your Follow-Up Process Organized

You can use a customer relationship management (CRM) system or a project management platform like Trello to track contact information, update lead statuses, create tasks for your team members, and so much more. Doing this will help you better manage the follow-up process and keep everything well-organized and properly documented. This will ensure that nothing falls through the cracks.

Ask Contacts for Follow-Up Preferences

It’s always a good idea to ask trade show contacts how they prefer to be followed up with and what communication channels are best for them. Some may prefer face-to-face meetings, while others might just want an email. 

Asking for follow-up preferences can also help you create customized content for each group of individuals.

Invite Them to Join a Mailing List

Invite prospective leads to join a mailing list by emphasizing the value of getting regular updates on your new product and service offerings, deals, discounts, events, and other company news. 

You can also print collaterals with the information about your mailing list and distribute them at your trade show booth.

Hire a Booth Design Company

An attention-grabbing booth is key to maximizing your return on investment from a trade show exhibit. Hiring an experienced booth design company can make all the difference in terms of an eye-catching and professional set-up that will draw more prospective leads.

Metro Exhibits is an experienced trade show booth and display design company that can help you create exhibit designs that will stand out. We offer end-to-end trade show booth services, from conceptualization to storage and installation, so you can get the most out of your experience. 

Contact us today for more information on how we can help you make a lasting impression at your next event!

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