Tradeshows Don’t Come Cheap - But Using the Right Lead Capture Software Makes Them Really Pay Off

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Tradeshows offer endless potential. They’re like speed-dating for businesses on a grand scale, exposing companies to potentially thousands of new clients, and can generate hundreds of leads. And in a strong economy, the buy-in is easy.

So, when business is good, it's not so much a gamble as a no-brainer. In less prosperous times, the opposite is true. And right now businesses are besieged by a complex web of issues from the lingering effects of the pandemic, to Brexit, Boris, and Vlad.

In times like these, marketing spend is often first to go, sometimes deemed a luxury over a necessity, and with tradeshow attendance being a big ticket item, they can often be eliminated.

But, let’s get real.

The Current Limitations of Tradeshows

Tradeshows can seem like a marketing mirage. The possibilities are endless, sure, but when you get there, having spent a sizeable slice of your marketing budget, without a high-impact booth the crowds can walk on by, all the brands blur into one, face-time can be fragmented and unfocused. Message missed. Data, incomplete. New business, unlikely.

So, by this logic, just like during Covid, businesses should swerve tradeshows and play it safe:

Stay home, protect the company, save jobs.

No. Absolutely not.

How Lead Capture Software Can Prove Trade Show ROI

This is where Integrate’s Precision Events comes in.   Lead capture software makes the maths work and also makes sure that the time and effort of attending tradeshows will pay off. It's levelling the cost-to-benefit equation, it's creating a cost-to-new-client ratio. And right now, marketers simply can’t afford anything less, because when there’s less money and new business going around, everyone needs more.

But surely, one lead capture tool can’t correct all those uncontrollables? Actually, it can, and it's simple. Precision Events allows marketers to build and nurture relationships better so that expos become so much more than data collection - it's a seamless springboard to conversion.

To better understand how it works, let's explore why tradeshow ROI data isn’t currently giving the insights they could.

Firstly, trade show badge scanners. They’re part of the entry package, but they’re also a big part of the problem. Data can take two weeks to be delivered and is often scant, leaving sales little to work with on a cold trail. Worse yet, sometimes operations will need to validate and enrich it, leading to further delays and lost gains.

So even if you had Elaine from Essex eating out of your palm on the stand, chances are that customer-client chemistry has vanished along with her knowledge of your product or service.

Precision Events is to marketing what the QR code is to hospitality. It isn’t drinks and food to the table. Its data and new clients direct to CRM, all from the comfort of your stand. 

Let’s drill down a bit here.

Maximising Your Events Lead Capture Potential

Precision Events allows you to scan business cards and harvest details so new business prospects are on the conversion pipeline within minutes. GDPR compliance, that’s sorted in the app, and there’s endless notes functions so all of the great conversations at the expo aren't forgotten.

Phil. FinTech Marketing Director. Frustrated with his siloed team. Going to France in February. Dreams of being centre court at Wimbledon. Loved that you had a client event there last year.

If you want clients to remember you and your product, first you need to remember them, and every scrap of detail in your CRM will help personalise the pipeline and help sales

smooth them towards conversion. With the right data, the pipeline should never get blockages, clients should always click through, and conversion rates should remain high.

So, by now our new mate Phil, who has just left the stand, is in the system. He’s been welcomed via the automated email you sent when he was added to the Demand Acceleration Platform (DAP) and is already thinking, ‘this company is slick’.

Utilising DAP, you can double-check Phil’s details, ensure he’s signed off on GDPR, and firm him up as a solid lead to nurture through the conversion funnel with cross-channel activation - all in the time you’d be waiting for his business card details to land in your inbox. And let’s be honest, by then, you may well be confusing Phil, for Frank or Phillis.

With things moving along so smoothly, when sales calls Phil, they can jump right back into that first impression your company left. They listen. They care.

How was his holiday in France?

Phil comes in for a demo. Signs the contract. Joins the company at the tennis.

Game. Set. Match.

With courtship complete, operations can now easily circle back and use the tradeshow data to enhance the company toolbox. See exactly how Phil was won over. Was the business secured entirely on the stand, from handshake to signature, or was Phil already familiar with the brand and just needed the reassurance of a meet and greet? Was the tradeshow all about adding to the pipeline, or was it more a platform to expedite previous relationships and close new deals?

And ultimately, did the team execute on every opportunity, did the event pay off, and should we go again next year? It’s all there to see and when properly utilised can provide real-world lessons for teams on conversion tactics and a blue-print to develop best-practice guidance.

Precision Events is locking in not only key data, but the essence of what makes tradeshows such fertile ground for marketers in the first place - real connection - allowing sales to jump into a relationship not a game of Guess Who. And it allows operations teams to see how opportunities were won or lost, every step of the way, to enhance performance and return on investment.

Tradeshows can be hit-and-miss, but only if you don’t seize control of the data, the relationships, and the process. It’s time for trade show ROI to be precise.

Precision Events, you can’t afford anything less.