After a big annual exhibition or event, all attendees leave with two things. Mild euphoria and exhaustion. Months of planning and organisation amalgamate to a great looking stand, successful meetings and fantastic networking opportunities. You pushed yourself through a few hangovers and your team might be considering giving yourself a pat on the back already for an exhibition well executed. It's the Monday after the big conference, and now that you've had a chance to recover from the exhaustion side of things, it's time to capitalise on the post-event buzz .
One of the main attractions to industry events is that for a short burst of time, you're often able to network with a much wider range of people than usual, perhaps getting 20 or so strong leads a day that might have taken you many months to nurture outside that environment. As the event draws to a close, your speed of follow-up on your leads is paramount to your success.
No matter how well your conversation on the day may have gone, event leads have a finite lifespan. Memories of such a packed in few days soon blurs together, and as the euphoria fades, so to does the possibility of them remembering your conversation, and the level of impact a follow-up is likely to have.
You need to reply to your hottest leads (the ones where you had a direct conversation and an exchange of business cards) immediately, and directly. Call them, or even hand write a letter. Emails can be easily ignored. Leave it longer than a week and it's history.
Your 'secondary' leads, those who perhaps entered that quiz on your stand or dropped their business card in a jar to win that iPad mini - followup with these contacts is just as important. Take the time to write a physical letter, not just an email, and top and tail it with a signature, make it personal.
It's likely you made a significant investment in attending the event, and this Monday, it's time to reenergise those leads, begin the sales process and maximise your investment!