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Follow the leads up, leads up, leads up - How to get the most out of a B2B event

James Crowder | 10 June 2024


Whether it’s in the form of exhibitions, breakfast briefings, webinars, or private C suite round table events, B2B events qualify as crucial activities in an organisation’s sales and marketing calendar.

Like any investment, there needs to be a proven return in order to make it worthwhile. But with the limited bandwidth of most sales and marketing teams, how do you know there aren’t missed opportunities falling through the cracks?

At GCL, we don't want that to happen.


The initial investment

Preceding the event are often months of preparation: there’s the planning of stand location, the layout of the stand itself and then the concoction of marketing collateral, strategic merchandising and physical labour required for a competent execution.

The goal of an exhibition is to engage with prospects and customers with the intention of winning new business. So how can you protect your investment and ensure you’re maximising the most output from your event?


The Great Unknown: Event Demographics & Prospect Segmentation

Through a combination of form fills, business card captures, and digital scans, the end of an event typically produces a pile of contacts at different stages of the sales cycle. Our 30-year+ experience shows us that these prospects can be segmented into four categories:

Category 1: Prospects that are interested but you haven’t engaged with them

Perhaps they were looking to speak to you but simply didn’t get the opportunity for a detailed discussion, or you were looking to engage with them - but it didn’t quite happen. For whatever reason you passed each other like ships in the night.

However, these prospects want to engage, and they want to engage now. It’s important they’re incorporated into the sales process.

Category 2: Prospects who are not immediately interested but it’s on their radar

There is a requirement from these prospects, but the requirement isn’t now; it’s further down the line. These prospects need to be followed up with a high-touch nurture process across online and offline channels until ready for sales engagement.

Category 3: Prospects of a general interest

These prospects don’t have a specific interest, but they’re willing to see what you’ve got to offer. These prospects can go into a low-to-mid touch nurture process.

Category 4: Businesses that don’t fit your target profile

The last category contains anyone that is just not a good fit for you and needs to be qualified out quickly. Whether they are prospects outside your target demographic, students, or probably the most frustrating one - people looking to sell to you, these need to be identified and pushed to one side.


Bandwidth, capacity & the variable of time

Another important factor is your sales & marketing team’s capacity to process through the newly acquired contact data in a timely manner. With increasing pressure and limited time, sales teams are often occupied with their pre-existing workload and here-and-now opportunities, meaning that potential live sales opportunities end up being fed into some form of digital-only nurture flow. Unfortunately, there’s a price to pay for this.

In a competitive marketplace, speed wins, and if you’re not following up within a week after the event, you can guarantee your competitors are, and they’ll be the ones profiting where you could be.


GCL - Let us do the spadework

After the event, it’s imperative someone is following up, qualifying and profiling through these prospects so that your sales team don’t miss out on untapped potential.

As much as you don’t want your big-ticket salespeople trawling through the data, you also don’t want your customer service team either.

Our expert team have the skills and experience to effectively manage this follow up process, ensuring that prospects are rapidly, professionally and effectively engaged and qualified before being routed along the right path - whether that is into a 1-2-1 meeting with a salesperson, or tagged and qualified out as a poor fit / timewaster.


A case in point

In a recent campaign we were given 131 badge scans from a client. Of the 131 scans, we qualified 86 of them. These were the results:

  • 13 of 86 didn’t fit the client’s ideal profile
  • 11 of 86 were the right business but the wrong person
  • 36 of 86 were the right person in the right business but were at the event for other purposes
  • 10 of 86 had active plans that were not quite imminent
  • 16 of 86 were sales ready

This campaign showcased the value of our support-driven consultative approach as we were able to find 26 previously unknown sales opportunities by proactively following up and re-engaging with the contacts scans.

By incorporating this follow up process right from event planning stages, you can be sure that a GCL project will safeguard any opportunities that slip through the net at your next B2B event.

If you have any questions or would like some more information, please feel free to contact us via our website - https://gclb2b.com/ - or alternatively contact us on 0121 452 2020.

One final thing: remember, always follow the leads up in a timely manner!


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