When it comes to building relationships after an event, the first few days are the most important. However, industry research shows that 75% to 80% of leads are not followed up on after an event.
So, what’s the recipe for event follow up success? In this blog, we’ll give you some hints and tips for this essential stage. Quick, the clock is ticking.
Ideally you should have a customer relationship management (CRM) system already in place to help keep track of your contacts. Enter your leads into the system and include any notes about what their interests are. This will help the sales team with follow up communications. Ensure that you either have their consent, or will only be sending them relevant communications that they would expect to receive, under GDPR’s legitimate interest legislation.
Social networks aren’t just for raising awareness whilst you’re at the event. Connecting with your prospects on the social channels they are active on and creating meaningful content can help you with your marketing efforts. Just make sure to offer something valuable – whether it’s a link to a blog post covering topics people asked about specifically, a round-up of the event, or a special offer for attendees.
Similarly, if you’ve had a great conversation and exchanged business cards, don’t miss the opportunity to connect, take the time to send a personalised request via LinkedIn. Apply this rule to all your event connections and you’ll see your LinkedIn network start to grow with meaningful connections that will help you in the future.
Often, you’ll pick up leads who are interested in your product/service, but who may not be ready to buy from you at the moment. In this instance, it’s important to maintain regular contact with them so that when they are ready you’re the first person they think of.
An effective way of keeping leads warm is through a regular e-newsletter. This can include content about you, your products/services, industry news or information to help them do their job more efficiently. By using the right kind of email or marketing automation system you can even filter the content to ensure people only see the information that’s relevant to them.
Furthermore, if you use a marketing automation system you can:
- automatically calculate ‘lead scores’ for your contacts
- track who has opened your email and see what they have looked at
- send them further content based on their interests
This is all information that will prove invaluable to your sales team.
Ask for feedback
If you’re hosting your own event, give out feedback forms that are simple to complete and give you valuable information. Include open-ended questions, such as ‘What did you like most/least?’, ‘How could the event be improved?’, ‘Other comments...’
These can either be handed out on the day for guests to complete, or you can email them after the event. A great way to increase the number of surveys completed is to offer guests the presentation slides from your event once they have submitted their feedback. However, in these cases, you need to ensure you are complying with GDPR regulations.
Measure your success
Organise a meeting or a survey with all the members of staff present at the event. Highlight the successes and agree on areas to improve on for next time.
Calculate the cost per lead. How does it compare to other events or forms of lead generation?
Ideally, you should track any orders that you received as a result of the event, which will give you an accurate perspective on your return on investment.
Most importantly look at the leads from the event and agree who will follow up the prospects.
Say thank you
Take the time to thank everyone that was involved, not just the guests that attended. Thank all your staff that helped out on the day, your customers, and partners. And don’t forget to send a note to everyone that helped behind the scenes, such as the venue, the caterers and the agency that helped design your stand, or promote your event.
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