There are likely a multitude of reasons why your company exhibits at trade shows. It might be to launch a new product, increase brand awareness, generate media exposure or meet with customers and partners. But if you’re like most companies, one of your big objectives is to generate leads (and therefore revenue) by attracting qualified prospects to your exhibit. Not only are tradeshows the place to meet qualified prospects, they are also extremely effective in shortening your sales cycle by allowing you to engage multiple levels of decision makers from your prospect companies simultaneously.
So how do you secure the attention of your prospects? Attracting the right audience to your booth starts with designing a program to deliver a compelling message that resonates with your prospects – not with the masses. The masses might love a free stress ball, but using your highly-paid sales team to hand out foam balls isn’t a good way to find qualified buyers. And without qualified visitors in your booth, it’s difficult to acquire leads, land appointments or book business.
Pre-qualify the majority of traffic to your booth with a hook or an offer that appeals specifically to your target. Design a communications program that attracts fewer high-quality visitors, versus one that attracts a high quantity of unqualified visitors. Once a prospect is standing at your booth, it’s up to your sales team to further qualify each one. Don’t allow your staff to linger in conversations with unqualified visitors. This is why you brought chotchkies. Hand them a stress ball and thank them for their visit.
Once you’ve attracted the right audience don’t forget the most important step – asking for the right action. The likelihood of converting a lead to business is higher if you engage the prospect in your sales process during the show. Whether this means booking an appointment or a demo, arranging an executive briefing or just capturing lead information, involve each prospect in the next step of your sales cycle.
The last step is to tie your results back to the event. Check back with sales 3, 6, even 12 months later to find out the status of their show leads. It’s up to you to quantify your results and demonstrate the success of your exhibit, and often times, depending on the length of your sales cycle, it could take a year (or longer) to prove that the show resulted in revenue for the company. By attracting a high quality audience on the front end, and further qualifying them in your booth, the chances for strong results that generate a positive (and impressive) ROI are great.
Learn more about how Nth Degree’s events services can help you attract the right audience to your exhibit.