Meeting prospects at a trade show can be one of the most effective ways to find new clients and renew relationships with current clients. The details of effective exhibiting can be daunting. There are many nuances that affect success. Lack of knowledge of some of the basics of exhibiting can hold legal nurse consultants back from venturing into this new area of marketing. A perception that exhibiting is impossibly expensive may deter involvement. Legal nurse consultants who do not exhibit are losing opportunities to expand their businesses. Other legal nurse consultants are wasting money and squandering opportunities by not being aware of the unwritten rules of success at trade shows. This session will share lessons learned the hard way, and provide practical advice for succeeding at exhibiting.
In this 1-hour webinar you will learn how to:
- Define your goals for exhibiting
- Identify the factors that make an attractive exhibiting
- Plan and assemble a booth
- Avoid costly mistakes when interacting with prospects
- Identify effective post show lead management
Trade Show Tips: Video Tips from Legal Nurse Consultants; Worksheet for Planning an Exhibit
Pat Iyer, RN, MSN, LNCC has exhibited at attorney trade shows since 1995. Her experiences have been gained from exhibiting at local and national conferences. She learned how to put a booth together from scratch, train assistants, develop checklists for getting ready for the show, identify appropriate giveaways, and interest prospects who come to the booth. She is the president of Med League Support Services, a successful independent legal nurse consulting company founded in 1989.
Moderator: Gary R. Bronga has extensive experience exhibiting. He started his product CLIPEZE with just an idea, computer and $500. Today CLIPEZE are sold in over 1,000 retail stores and catalogs around the world.
Follow Up after Tradeshows
by Caryn Kopp
Over the last year I’ve heard several stories about lost sales opportunities. Many occurred as a direct result of post-trade show oversights that could have been avoided. It happens too often. Join me by shaking your head as you read the story below. Then, vow to follow the strategies provided so you can clean up on trade show sales opportunities!
A company I know sent 3 people to a trade show in January ’09. All 3 people flew, stayed 3 nights, went to nice meals and entertained prospective clients. They uncovered several high volume prospect opportunities, one of which included a large potential program with Disney (you do the math). Upon their return to the office they were faced with the typical backlog of work, urgent client requests and calls which needed to be returned…yesterday. Digging out from under took priority over follow up. You can guess what happened. The first follow up…a group of letters (snail mail)… went out in April (3 months later). The second follow up, a group of phone calls occurred in July. The conversation with the Disney decision maker went like this:
Decision Maker: “Oh, I do remember you. Too bad we didn’t connect sooner. We decided to move forward with the program. We chose a vendor and are finalizing the contract now. We plan to roll out within the next 6 weeks.”
Salesperson (also now known as Sad Person): “There are many benefits we provide, we would still appreciate the opportunity to come in and talk with you. Can we set a time for that?”
Decision Maker: “I’m sorry but as I said we are finalizing the contract now. I’ll call you if something changes.”
You may think following up is obvious. You may think this story is a fluke. But the reality is this occurs commonly. Make immediate contact your HIGHEST priority when you return to the office. Use your calendar to block out the morning you return to the office to complete sales follow up. Think of new contacts like really good French baguettes. By tomorrow they’re stale. Before going through the mountain of mail, the volumes of voicemail or the never ending email, tackle your trade show follow up. You may need to hang a sign on your office door saying you are unavailable (just as you would be if you were out at a meeting). Hire a temp (or have an assistant on hand) to help you handle the extra workload. Sound expensive? Compare it against the lost Disney opportunity…enough said. There is a flow to new business development and new business relationships. Keeping the momentum going and delivering what you promised, when you promised it, is a critical component to successfully adding new clients to your roster. If, for some reason, you cannot send the information, the samples or execute the phone call when you promised, make sure to COMMUNICATE. A simple email letting someone know when you will fulfill your promise fills the bill. Then, be sure to adhere to your promised timeline.
Some people tell me they think following up quickly is a sign of desperation. Not true! There’s a difference between “Please meet with me…please, please, please!!!!” (desperation) and “I am calling to follow up on our conversation this past Monday. Here is an example of how we can help you to achieve your goals.”Prompt response and follow up is respected by decision makers. It conveys that you are interested in their businesses and lays the foundation for relationships of trust. In a detail-oriented business, demonstrating your ability to deliver the details matters. This is not the time to play hard to get.
Some people want to wait for a few days to give the decision maker time to “dig out from under”. Why? Isn’t that one of the best times to catch the prospect at his/her desk? The long discussion may need to wait for a few days but you can certainly ask for a time on the calendar for a meeting or conference call.
A few people tell me they strategically lump trade show contacts with other prospects they are pursuing and then call in priority order. With this line of thinking it could take weeks to follow up with a new contact. Revisit the French baguette analogy. What will it look like weeks later?
In the course of your many conversations at a trade show, you may uncover an opportunity for another person in your company. Apply the Golden Rule. Treat this as you would want a co-worker to treat an opportunity of yours. Immediately communicate all details to your colleague, as if it were a job share. Include information about the opportunity, the level of priority and when the prospect is expecting follow up to occur.