Marketing Trade Shows

Marketo put together a nice wall-hanging-graphic on marketing trade shows in the United States. Attending all marketing trade shows would be exhausting; but, surely there are a few shows to highlight for attendance. The graphic groups marketing trade shows by region and orders them by month. Dreamforce and MarketingSherpa are two of the biggest shows around. SXSW is a great show that adds lots of social events to the agenda, mixing entertainment and business together. But before you invest $10K+ per show, let’s discuss how to make marketing trade shows successful.

Making Marketing Trade Shows a Success

Keep three rules in mind when you attend marketing trade shows. Plan, qualify and follow-up. A great teacher once told me, “Output equals input”. Make sure you make a list of targeted prospects or customers, schedule meetings before hand, get promotional material in place and assign roles and responsibility to your team. Next, qualify your leads at the show. It’s amazing to me how many marketing trade shows I’ve been to where the marketing person comes up to me – while I’m chatting with someone else – and asks, “Can I scan your badge”. I think they’re just doing that because they’re paid on how many contacts they can collect. Make sure you engage with attendees at your booth. Try not to sell, but to listen. Finally, make sure to follow-up. It’s amazing to me that some of these companies do not follow up after I’ve expressed some interest at marketing trade shows. So, how can lead qualification and lead follow up be improved?

Simplifying Trade Show Qualification and Follow Up

By using Lead Liaison’s revenue generation software sales and marketers cut through the clutter of qualifying and following up with leads from marketing trade shows. Using our software allows marketers to:

1. Upload collected contacts into our database
2. Send relevant email communications to their contact list (email marketing)
3. Listen to how recipients respond and engage with your communications (lead tracking)
4. Automatically qualify respondents based on how they engage with your brand and marketing content online (lead scoring)
5. Keep a complete record of the respondent’s current and future engagement with your company (lead management)
6. Nurture the contact by sending them relevant communications over time to further build the relationship and educate them on your solution (lead nurturing)
7. Surface only the hottest marketing trade show leads ready to be handed to sales (lead distribution)

We’re compiling our own list of top marketing trade shows for 2012. Are there any shows that are missing in the graphic? Which marketing trade shows are your favorites?

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