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Wednesday, 16 October 2013 12:29

Pre-Event Planning that Accelerates Your B2B Lead Generation Return

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In the run up to a trade show or event, managers typically focus on creating an attractive booth, glossy literature, and the presentation and catering. After all, that's where the big money goes. But to increase your return on investment substantially and maximize B2B lead generation, you need an integrated marketing approach that includes a dose of pre-planning.







5 Pre-Event Tactics that Pay Off

1. Send an Invitation

Start by sending an email or snail-mail invitation to prospects and customers you want to attract to your booth. Make it timely—not too early, not too late. The ideal timing will vary depending on whether you're attending a national or local show. The key is to give attendees time to plan ahead.

Just because you send an invitation, however, you can't assume that each and every one of them gets read. A report from the Radicati Group said that corporate employees send and receive 105 e-mails a day, and mail can end up in the circular file, so it's easy for your outreach to become lost in the shuffle.

2. Pick up the Phone

The only way to know for sure that someone has received your message is to pick up the phone and talk with them one on one. A conversation enables you to discover their interests, show them the relevance of attending the event, and, set up an appointment or register them-- the most important thing you can do to assure success. This not only boosts attendance but also provides an idea of turnout levels so you can plan ahead intelligently.

By adding this personal touch, you build the relationship and set your company apart from the competition. Also, it allows you to unearth objections that you need to overcome and, of course, clean up and build your database.

3. Email a Follow Up

If you discover prospects and customers haven't seen your invitation, send it to them again so they have all the information they need at their finger tips. And if they register or set up an appointment, email a confirmation.

4. Bring on the Marketing Arsenal

Add in other marketing tactics to your pre-event campaign such as promoting it on your website, through social media, and advertising in targeted magazines.

5. Set Up Appointments

During the invitation process set up appointments for the sales team at the event. This will help to keep your sales team focused, and give them time to prepare for meetings. This also gives the prospect a blocked out point in their calendar to speak with sales instead of aimlessly trying to catch someone's attention at the event.

Pre-Planning Your Post Event Marketing

People at the event are warm leads so don't let them go cold. Research shows that 35-50% of sales go to the vendor that responds first. Also, follow up on the people who registered but did not show up. They had an interest but could not join you. Why? Would they be interested in a personal meeting?

So plan your follow up. What materials do you want to include? A white paper? A brochure? Are you going to call attendees? If so, what's the objective and who's making the calls?

As you go through your post-event planning you may realize that you can follow up more effectively if you have more insights into the attendees' needs. It's a good thing you figured that out before the show. Now you can put together a questionnaire for attendees to fill in at the event that provides you with demographics and interests. Also, you can create lead forms for your sales team to take notes in an organized manner.

Your telemarketing department or outsourced partner can use this information to prepare a well-tailored phone follow up.

For a free consultation on how to use business-to-business telemarketing to boost your sales, call us now at +1 718-709-0800 (Americas) / +39 06-978446-60 (EMEA).