I visited a great retail technology exhibition this week. One of my clients was exhibiting there and I thought I’d walk the show and see if I could drum up some new business. It got me thinking about the HUGE investment many companies make in their presence at events and more importantly, how many of those companies implement effective post-event marketing campaigns to ensure they convert the leads to sales.
So, to follow on from my previous blog about how to ensure ROI from an exhibition, here are my tips on how to implement effective post-event marketing campaigns effectively:
1. Follow up immediately
You need to stand out from your competition, so the first step in your post-event marketing campaign should begin during the event! Send a “Thank you for visiting us” email to all leads at the end of each day. Include links to further information about your company and products on your website and an invitation to follow you on social media. You could even include a picture of the stand as a memory jogger for them. The main point here is that you are making contact and giving them further information immediately.
2. Distribute the leads with speed
At the end of each show day, look through the leads and allocate them to whoever will ultimately be responsible for following them up. If this means you have to load them into your company’s CRM system, then have someone back in the office tasked with doing this the next working day. Your goal is to have the leads allocated for follow up the first day after the show finishes.
3. Call, don’t email
Ensure that your sales team calls every lead within a few days of the show finishing. The quicker the better. If you’ve classified the leads according to how “hot” they are, your team will know which ones to follow up first. This is their opportunity to strike whilst the iron is hot, remain top of mind and stand out from the competition. Make sure that your sales team logs all interactions they have with the lead and resulting actions in your CRM system – this will allow you to track progress as part of your ROI measurement.
4. Build the relationship
Depending on your business and sales cycle, you may not convert your leads immediately, so as your sales team continues to engage with them, the marketing function should too. For many companies, this is where they fall over. They become a fair weather friend, dipping in and out of the relationship when it suits them. For your post-event marketing campaigns to be truly effective, you must focus your efforts on developing a relationship with your leads; gaining their trust and providing them with useful, educational and altruistic information so that they begin to value your opinions as well as the information you provide. Using social media and content marketing to dovetail into your sales teams’ calls and emails will ensure your marketing campaigns help build strong relationships based on trust and education.
5. Know your prospect/customer journey
Each prospect will progress through the sales cycle at a different rate and have different demands on their relationship with you. By mapping out typical prospect and customer journeys and planning future marketing campaigns, thought leadership and educational content that is tailored to their individual journey you are providing your leads with relevant and timely communications and information.
Follow these simple steps consistently and you’re assured of converting your leads into sales.
Jo Coxhill is a seasoned marketing expert and can help you create effective and engaging marketing campaigns that will convert leads into sales. Contact Jo to find out more.
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