How to Fix a Broken Lead Nurturing Strategy after the Trade Show?
As salespersons, how many times have we literally witnessed being done apart from a hard-earned lead after the trade show?
The biggest challenge facing the community of convention booth staffers and salespersons is that despite having access to a formidable volume of data on leads, the conversion of these leads into closed sales borders on modest levels.
Where do we as sales executives go wrong?
What can be done to address challenges facing the lead nurturing strategy and fix broken leads?
Let us keep things in perspective and understand that the most important part of attending a convention or a trade show is what happens after it-sales. Without effective conversion of leads to sales, the entire premise on which the argument of attending conventions, conferences and trade shows is premised comes down crashing.
Let us identify the grey areas and simultaneously look at the correct alternatives to approaching leads. Here is a list of the mistakes that breaks the lead nurturing strategy and what it takes to fix them.
Act Fast and Reach Out First
Early bird catches the worm. In the context of conventions and conferences, the first mover’s advantage is always palpable. The exhibitor brand that reaches out first to the lead usually stands the best chance of converting into sales.
Many convention booth staffers and salespersons attending the event compromise on speed. The grind of the day’s affairs at the convention booth overwhelm their energies and from there on, it is a slope downhill. Do not let things go into an autopilot mode.
Share the data on leads as and when you get it, with the sales team. Use a tablet loaded with the CRM software to feed the data as soon as possible, so that the sales persons get the time to prepare the templates for official correspondence over email, mobile and Skype to begin.
Take a Brief from the Booth Staffer
Before you commence correspondence with the lead, take a moment to talk to the booth staffer that had the opportunity of interacting first hand with the lead. Seek a brief from the booth staffer and ask what the lead came searching for and what did he commit.
The context of the conversation between the lead and the event attending team should pave the path for the next steps to follow. Many salespersons do not do so and the consequences are obvious. The lead explores the loopholes in intra-departmental coordination, bargains harder for economy and pushes the envelope further for personalized incentives that may not have been a part of the bilateral dialogue framework starting from the floor of the tradeshow display.
Reference the Convention or the Trade Show
Where did you meet the lead?
How did you get to know of the lead enterprise?
What commitments did you make to the lead and where?
The answers to these questions imply that you must reference the convention or the trade show because the lead must know and be assured that you are engaging in correspondence with him as part of the continuum of the dialogue that began at the event. Not doing so makes the correspondence invasive and thus less likely of conversion.
Personalize the Message
Was yours the only booth that the lead visited on the day of the event? You know the answer. One of the pitfalls of sending a generalized message without personalizing it is that the lead gest caught in the quagmire of clutter effect. Having met multiple people at different booths, the lead may not remember every brand and their respective commitments.
Under such circumstances of corporate amnesia, an overzealous sales pitch can permanently destroy the relationship. Instead email event memorabilia like photographs of the lead with the convention booth executive, moments of professional gestures, instants capturing the lead with branded convention display rental forming the background and exchange of professional pleasantries between the two teams or individuals.
Do Not Make a Sales Pitch in the First Email
How many of us salespersons in our overdrive for the kill, end up actually killing the lead generated from the convention or the trade show?
There are instances when we make an aggressive sales pitch in the email by drafting a clearly targeted sales email with content that is stuffed with keywords describing our brand, products and pricing offer.
The end result is that it does not reach the inbox of the lead but rather reaches the junk folder and stays there without garnering the attention from the lead that we actually deserved. Hold your horses and do not make a sales pitch in the first email.
Invite to a Corporate Luncheon
Do you know the power brokers in the organization?
Who are the decision makers in the lead enterprise that your brand wants to sell to?
Request the leads generated for corporate lunch sessions to get access to insider information, know the people that your brand shall sell to, their immediate requirements and mode of delivery of the merchandise or service.
Request an Appointment
Request for an official meeting after you have enough insider information on the organizational structure, the key decision makers and the current scenario of business unfolding at the lead enterprise. Make sure that the lead enterprise gets enough time to respond but always keep closing the sales deal.
Do not give any hint on selling something. Keep the correspondence open-ended to tweak the direction as per the evolving situation and navigate across lanes as things unfold.
Convention leads are either productive in the short run or on the in the long run. No attendee turns up at a convention without reason, objective and purpose. While it may take some time to close a sales deal, it is important to stay dynamic and build a relationship for the long run.
The opportunity to sell more often than not pops out of nowhere, abruptly.