Maximizing Trade Show Leads


I recently attended a trade show where I spoke with about 20 solid leads. I want to make sure I take the right steps after the show to increase my chances of closing the sale. I sell B2B software and each lead is worth $1500 up front plus ongoing subscription fees. My leads are retail businesses.

What would you recommend I do as follow up? Here are a few considerations:

  1. Each lead is entered in to a raffle
  2. I have both phone number and email address
  3. I have a behind-the-scenes video of vendors setting up for the trade show
  4. I have 2 video testimonials from existing customers
  5. I have an 'interview' style video for a non-competitor

Thanks for your input,


asked Oct 7 '10 at 10:00
Tom Espo
16 points

2 Answers


It's been awhile since I have done much from tradeshows and I'm in marketing now so I'm sure other folks will have a better answer. But a few thoughts from me:

1 - Typically raffles are done to get more leads at an event. Really no value afterwards.

2 - I would email each and ask to setup a call to follow up and talk about their needs. The more personal you can make it, citing anything from your conversation at the show, the better. You might even say in the email that you'll be calling to setup a specific time that works on their calendar. Then you call everyone. It's worth your time obviously. Email them right away while they might remember the conversation. A classic problem with companies is they don't follow up with event leads or wait too long until the prospect's interest has cooled.

3 - I wouldn't be interested in a behind the scenes video.

4 - Perhaps you put links to the testimonials in your email. Say you'll be calling to setup a time and in the meantime, they might be interested in hearing from a couple customers.

5 - Not exactly sure what this is but you already spoke to these folks and you want to speak again so I wouldn't try and do too much more selling in the email.

That's what seems to make sense to me. I'll be interested in comments from others about working tradeshow leads.

answered Oct 7 '10 at 10:40
4,214 points
  • Thanks Chris. Great suggestions. – Tom Espo 13 years ago


Determine the major steps needed to get a lead to a closed deal. Example: follow-up call, demo, trial, close. Will they need to get in touch with someone from you company who is more technical? If you sold this app before, you have an idea.

Qualify your leads. Simple: hot, warm, cold, or percent chance of closing. Initially 20 is not too much to handle. You could personally email all of them by lunch hour. You want to start building a score card on your ability to spot the strong leads and get them through the pipeline. Too many sales people do this in their head or gut 'only'. As they move or don't move down the pipeline, identify what went right or wrong. Were there questions you could have asked up front? Were you speaking to the person with the authority to buy your project (manager loves the product, but CFO won't pay for it)? Are they more comfortable with onsite visits and presentations, but you're only able to do over the web (based on cost of your app this is probably not the case)?

You have 20 solid leads, but need a plan on what to do next. Obviously you're going to ask them to buy, but there's more to it than that.

answered Oct 7 '10 at 20:05
Jeff O
6,169 points

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