Our Angle
How to turn post show leads into orders
Laura Blunt

Trade shows can be exhausting... and it's too easy to get back to our desks after market and let the leads we spent thousands of dollars and a week of our time collecting turn into a stack of business cards "we will get to one day." I know, because I too am a recovering post show lead procrastinator.

Your contacts can easily become customers... with the right strategy. Try committing to a process for collecting leads, even if it is a stack of business cards held together with a rubber band. Then find a system for entering and tracking those leads - perhaps a spreadsheet, database, or your back office system. Now take action. It can be in the form of an email, regular mail, phone call, or, if you have a rep agency, perhaps an in person visit from a local representative. My favorite method for turning post show leads into orders... a postcard with a photo of the trade show booth as a visual reminder that includes a note thanking them for stopping by and offering a call to action in the form of a discount or special if they place an order by a certain date. Customers may not recognize the company name at first, and the booth photo helps them remember and perhaps renew their interest and excitement for the product. 

Whatever method you choose, make it simple and something you'll stick with over time. The routine will insure post show action and turn your leads into orders.  

 
Stuart Teller

For those of you with rep agencies, one of the best ways to transform leads into orders is communicating show activity to your road sales force. Not only are they eager for the information to follow-up on qualified interested leads, they are also your physical touch point with potential customers and capable of building a lasting relationship that will turn into multiple orders for years to come. 

Equally as important as communicating leads to your sales force is providing order copies and contact information for new customers obtained at the show. Sometimes we're so focused on the new customer's order, we forget to share the success with the rep who will cater to the customer after the show and assist them in reordering.

Whether your method for sharing important post show leads and new customer information is physical copies mailed, electronic copies emailed, or the data in easy to read spreadsheets or databases, ensure sales after the show too by keeping your reps informed and armed to advocate your product on the road.