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Every three years, thousands of people flood to NPE for new business opportunities and to see the latest and greatest in the world of plastics. Attracting over 65,000 buyers from more than 128 countries, there are more than 20,000 unique buying companies and 87 percent of attendees make or influence buying decisions.
It is no wonder NPE is a goldmine for leads. Companies not only love the exposure into new markets but also the access to many leads and hard-to-reach buying teams from across the global plastics industry.
Collecting leads is definitely not the issue. However, organizing leads post NPE proves to be a long and challenging process for many teams. Having a small window to make initial contact, it is crucial to have a process for organization and distributing leads in order to strategically follow-up on time.
Whether you are a new exhibitor or a returning one, the following guide is intended to help you better organize your leads for a maximum return.
How to Organize Your NPE Leads
Step 1: Take Notes AT the show Make sure your staff takes notes on what the visitors are interested in, when they are looking to make a purchase, and their role in the final decision. This information will help them mark the lead as hot, cold, or lukewarm.
Step 2: Gather ALL of your new contacts
At the office, collect all the business cards, badge scan information, electronic fill-in sheets, online submissions through your landing page, and notes from the entire team.
Step 3: Put the information in a spreadsheet Make columns for first name, last name, email, telephone number, company, title and address (optional – Lines 1 & 2 , City, State and Zip Code) and any other relevant information you may have.
Step 4: Divide into separate lists Split the spreadsheet into segments that you want to market to as groups. Start with hot, cold, and lukewarm leads and follow with any other segments that work for your business. For example, influencers, social media follower, potential partners, etc.
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Step 5: Assign owners Pass the hot leads to the Sales Team for follow-up as soon as possible. It is widely recommended that hot leads must be contacted within 48 hours after the tradeshow because people usually still remember the interaction.
Cold and lukewarm leads need to be placed on a nurturing journey by marketing until they are ready for a sales conversion, usually within a 12-18 month period.
Step 6: Structure your nurturing journey Plan the journey you want to take each segment on and add the information into your marketing automation system. Decide on the content you want to send, the length of time between emails, and what happens when the journey is completed.
Types of emails you can send are a personalized follow-up email after the show, product offerings, a case study, or a webinar. If a person does become a customer, they are often placed on an onboarding journey. If they do not become one, they can be added to your monthly newsletter as an example.
Step 7: Stay in touch
Whether your lead becomes a buyer or not, it is wise to keep the communication active with them by sending regular emails every two to four weeks. On one end, you will be engaging with your customers and on the other, you will be reminding them that you are there when they need you.
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