So your show is complete, and after a good long sit down to rest your weary legs, you are motivated, ready and rearing to go to reap the rewards of those long hard days on your stand! Well, my advice would be to just slow yourself down, you are going to need to have patience.
No one that attends an exhibition is going to pick the phone up the next day and place a huge order, this may happen once in a blue moon, but it certainly is not the usual practice. You have a hard few months ahead of you. So take notice of these next steps and don’t get disheartened 2 weeks down the line when you are still searching for that first order!
1 Week After the Exhibition
Sit down and go through all your leads thoroughly. And I mean thoroughly. Do not just go through and add the total leads you have and think the exhibition was a success just because you got 220 leads! You need to collate them in to groups of priority. This is why I always say it is crucial to write as much information down at the exhibition as you possibly can. You are never going to remember if James Baker from company X is a high priority lead unless you have made notes, you may remember one or two…but not 225.
2 Weeks After the Exhibition
It is time to start contacting your leads, pay special attention to your high priority leads. Be courteous and concise on the phone; don’t jump in straight away asking for orders. Like the rabbit and the hare, take your time and in the end you will come up trumps.
3 Weeks After the Exhibition
Once you have made initial contact with all your leads you need to start developing an individual plan for all of your key leads. These need to be tailored and treated as total individuals, so that the lead feels like they are being treated as an individual. If you roll out a plan to do A, B and C to all of the leads they will see it coming a mile off, and your return on investment will really take a hit.
2 Months After the Exhibition
Sit your team down and go over everything that you have so far. Recap on strategies and get them to read everything back to you, ensure they understand the importance of treating individuals as such and making them feel special. At this stage it is also a good idea to go through all the costs with your team and work out where you are financially, this reinforces the importance of converting those leads!
4 Months After the Exhibition
Now you can get a clearer picture on your return on investment, you may still have some sales in the pipeline but you can get a good indicator as to whether the show as a success or not.
6 Months After the Exhibition
Time to sit down and assess the entire exhibition, where you think it could be improved, what you did well, could a slightly different stand design help etc. Ensure you go through every little piece so that you can improve at your next exhibition!
That is it, you are done. All there is left to do now is go through and do it all again!