Help your exhibitors generate leads!

As an event planner, you know how important it is for exhibitors to generate leads. This is the key performance indicator to help them measure the return on investment of their participation. So how do you help exhibitors generate more leads at an event?

What is a lead?

The term ‘lead’ is particularly used in Inbound Marketing and in Digital Marketing. It refers to a person who has demonstrated an interest in a company. It therefore differs from the simple visitor of whom nothing is known.

The lead has gone a step further by giving their contact details to the company. Most often, it includes their first name, last name, and email address. He or she thus authorize the company to contact them at the end of the event. During a trade show, this collection of information can be done via a form to be completed at the booth or by scanning the participant's badge, for example.

It is possible to prioritize leads based on their behavior. Thus, a person who gives more details such as their job title, the name of the company they work for, their phone number or any other information about them, can be identified as a qualified lead. Their interest and confidence in the company are significant.

Keys to optimizing lead generation at a trade show

Attending a trade show is a great opportunity for exhibitors to generate leads. Indeed, this is the perfect time to gain brand visibility, establish one’s position as an industry expert on the market and make new connections. However, taking part in the event is often not enough to generate leads. To optimize the exhibitors' lead generation, it is important to convey best practices to adopt before, during and after the show.

# Before the event
As soon as they register for the event, exhibitors should communicate about their participation. As the organizer, you can encourage them to communicate on social networks, send a newsletter to their contact list, etc. Likewise, they should be able to easily invite their customers and offer free tickets to their biggest clients. It also allows to build loyalty and faithfulness with existing customers and attract prospects to the booth for a live conversation.

# During the event
To multiply leads at a trade show, it is essential to give a special attention to the booth layout. Guiding exhibitors with support, advice & tips, documents... is always helpful. To do so, deploying an Exhibitor Portal is a good mean to relay and gather all these information.

An appealing trade show brand should be seen as a major asset to generate leads. There are many possibilities to do this: from distributing flyers & brochures summarizing your expertise and innovations, offering goodies or organizing side events at the booth. The main objective is to pique visitors' curiosity in order to provoque a discussion about their activity and their needs.

#After the show
This is key for the exhibitor's successful participation at the show - and they should be supported accordingly. Companies should communicate on their participation and the show's takeaways. This can happen through an article in their blog and/or newsletter, social media, etc...

All the data collected during the show must be analyzed and used to implement a real lead conversion strategy. Leads generated at the show should not become ordinary data in a database/CRM. Depending on their degree of interest and qualification, they should be reached out with a personalized approach: targeted email campaigns or outbound calls from Sales Representatives to further qualify the lead.

Virtual Events: How to Facilitate Exhibitors' Lead Generation?

# Touchpoints: a sustainable solution to generate leads during events
The health crisis has led organizers to change event formats and turn towards digital. But what some have mistaken for a passing trend should rather be appreciated as a lasting development. Virtual or hybrid events - mixing face-to-face and digital - will continue to multiply in the coming months and years.

This is good news from a lead-generation perspective. Indeed, virtual events make it easier to identify leads thanks to networking platforms, discussions via chat, or behavioral tracking and data, which is easier to access online that onsite.

# Challenges for event organizers
The raise for virtual components leads to rethink the organization of events, as well as how to generate new leads for exhibitors. Let's keep in mind that they still have the same objective and expect a certain return on investment (ROI). To help them multiply their leads, event organizers can offer different formats such as conducting interviews, organizing webinars, putting together sponsored sessions, etc.

In addition, the choice of the online platform for the event team is essential. It must allow exhibitors to collect and analyze attendees' data in a very simple and reliable way. It is both the organizer's and the platform supplier's responsibility to help exhibitors get a grip of the platform and exploit it at its maximum capacity.
# Lead generation: best practices for exhibitors
Finally, to help exhibitors generate leads during a virtual event, here are some tips to share with them:
  • Fill out the page dedicated to their company, showcase their innovations or expertise, such as products / services / use cases / success stories...
  • Subscribe for extra visibility such as sponsored banners and more advertising spaces.
  • Take part in speaking opportunities or organize their own sessions to demo their tool or highlight a fruitful collaboration with a client.
  • Finally, analyze data and statistics generated during the virtual show to set up a real process of followup toward converting leads into recurring clients!

Whether you are organizing a trade show or a virtual show, here are some key elements to help exhibitors generate leads.
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