Don’t Be a Trade Show Vulture! Here’s The Trade Show Follow Up Template Success

In this article, I’ll explain how to run a successful trade show follow up template without being pushy and annoying.

Need Help Automating Your Sales Prospecting Process?

LeadFuze gives you all the data you need to find ideal leads, including full contact information.

Go through a variety of filters to zero in on the leads you want to reach. This is crazy specific, but you could find all the people that match the following:Ā 

  • A company in the Financial Services or Banking industry
  • Who have more than 10 employees
  • That spend money on Adwords
  • Who use Hubspot
  • Who currently have job openings for marketing help
  • With the role of HR Manager
  • That has only been in this role for less than 1 year
Just to give you an idea. šŸ˜€

10 Steps for Effective Post Trade Show Follow up Template

  • Consider opportunities to create free swag or give away items for customers.
  • When you’re hiring, make sure that the job is relevant to your candidates.
  • Tier your gifts.
  • Choose your winner carefully, but make sure you can execute the strategy.
  • Plan your outreach and prioritize leads accordingly.
  • It’s important to follow up with a thank you email soon after the interview.
  • Integrate your marketing automation platform with your pull list and start engaging.
  • Create Facebook ads with the goal of retaining leads that didn’t convert to customers.
  • Announce the winners of your contest and give a book demo.
  • If you are unsure of your process or ROI, then take the time to measure it. This will help refine any errors in strategy.

Lead Generation at Events and Conferences: The Horrors (and Reality)

This is how I usually feel after interacting with a vendor at an event or conference, and then giving my contact information to them as they are following up on trade show leads.

They’re descending upon me like vultures on a dead carcass wait, that’s really dark. How about like ants to a half-full can of Coca Cola? In any event, my impression is the same. I’m clearly just a tasty morsel, and I’ve lost my identity completely. Forget about my needs and interests, I’m talking about basic facts that even define me on paper: my occupation, my experience, the company I work for. None of it matters.

In the trade show follow up template, they care about three things:

  • My name
  • My phone number
  • My email address

Sales Development Representatives are in trouble!

When I go to a lot of events, there are some things that tend happen.

I attend conferences and meetings to learn and network with peers, prospects, or decision makers.

But I always feel a little distaste when sponsors come to me and ask for my contact information. They want it so they can add me into their lead funnel.

The Two Most Worst Infractions Committed Against Attendees

I was surprised to find that the event organizer gave my contact information away, leaving me vulnerable.

Some people are so desperate for leads that they don’t know when to stop scanning the expo hall.

I was at a conference and someone scanned me as I walked by.

I knew I was in trouble when my name badge, dangling from around my neck and bouncing all over the place, made it easy for him to get access to me. He placed his proximity reader right under where he found mine.

There are some more polite tactics that people use on a regular basis.

I’ve been asked to be scanned for fingerprints more than a handful of times when I was being hired. The conversation usually goes like this: Employer: “We want to keep your information on file so if we have an opening in the future, you are at the top of our list. Can you please provide us with some fingerprint scans?

Me: “Thanks for sharing with me what [insert company name] does. The thing is, like I told you, I’m really not in need of those services, so unfortunately I’m not a viable lead for you, but I’ll keep you in mind if I meet anyone else who is.” Sales Rep in Booth: “Hey, I get it, but I need numbers. Can I please just scan you? You can opt out or mark us as spam or whatever later.” Me: “I’m not joking. I really don’t need or want your product. I’m happy to connect with you on LinkedIn to share referrals though if you’d like.” Sales Rep in Booth: “Please. It would really help me out.”

The sales rep in the booth begged me to let him scan my phone for numbers, but I refused. He said that he needed some way of reaching out to customers and scanning their phones would be a good idea.

I told him that I don’t need his product and will not be buying it. If he wants, we can connect on LinkedIn to share referrals.

In trade show follow up template, the salesperson in the booth was asking for help from a passerby.

So I cave. Curiosity gets the best of me and this company knows it. They use my curiosity to get information from me.

Other competitors I talk to know what my company does, so when they see me on their app or website, the reps will scan me and say:

Vulture: “Hey, we’re giving away a drone (or Apple Watch, or Fit Bit or Beats) you might win!” Me: “Well I certainly hope not!” Vulture: “You never know. You totally could. It’s a random drawing.” Me: “Again, I certainly hope not!”

This is a joke.

Vulture: “You never know. You might be one of the lucky ones who get picked for this job, it’s just a random drawing.”

I replied, “I hope not!”

I’ve been to so many trade shows and events, I feel like there is no way it can get any worse than this. So here are my secrets for success at a trade show or event.

The downside of this trade show follow up template is that it works best with large numbers of trade show leads.

I’ve found that some great lead generation tactics are for smaller events, when you have the chance to talk one-on-one with prospects.

But if you’re working a show with thousands of attendees, I recommend hiring salespeople and marketing staff.

10 Trade Show Follow up Best Practices

1. Is it better to swag or not to swag? That is the concern.

When you’re faced with the question of whether or not to give out trade show giveaways, remember that there are a lot of distractions at these events. Focus instead on your buyer personas and what they need from you.

When it comes to promotional items, companies have the option of giving away branded notepads or selfie sticks. But these can be just another thing for your buyer persona to carry around with them.

A company that wants to focus on gadgets or useful tools might want to consider swag, but it’s important not be too gimmicky.

2. Make a Relevant Offer

It’s not always easy, but if you want to give out a toy or gadget, make sure it is relevant. For example, last year my company gave away these inexpensive sports watches at the trade show booth.

Me: “Did you get your free sports watch?” Attendee: Did you say watch?” Me: Yep. See, we’re a time and attendance company so we’re giving away watches. Kind of cool, huh?”

Speaker: Yes, I said watch.

Me: Yeah. I’m not sure how it works, but if you want one we’re giving them out for free.

It was Halloween and we were handing out watches for free. If the prospect just wanted a watch, she took it and moved on, but if they needed one to track their time or employees’ attendance at work then she stayed to chat.

More and more companies are handing out earbuds to their employees. I’ve seen a lot of different ways to make them relevant, but what is most important is that they have some sort of purpose.

When we gave away earbuds, we tied it back to our email marketing and told attendees that now was the time to use them.

3. Tier Your Gifts

The best company events have a range of gifts to give away, from small giveaways to grand prizes.

  •  Handing out a usefulfun product is a great way to get your name in front of people. They may not be interested in what you’re selling, but at least they’ll remember that you were kind.
  • I don’t have a problem with giving away free t-shirts to people who are serious about our product. I usually only give these out when someone is on the verge of committing and just needs that push.
  • You need to make your spot relevant, but don’t overthink it.

There is a balance between rewarding hard work and not overcompensating. The person you want to attract will appreciate something small.

Consider what would be a valuable gift for your customer. Maybe you tie it into the productservice offering or maybe they just want something to show off.

When I have a tight budget, Groupon Goods is great. But when there’s more money to spend, I can get something nicer from the high-end part of their site.

4. Select Your Winner

You don’t just give the most expensive gift to anyone who buys. You can’t even award it by chance or on a whim.

Instead, you refer to all the information about your prospects that you gathered on site at the trade show and what is in your CRM. You also take into account any data from marketing automation platforms.

The person who is the perfect fit for your company and has shown an interest in what you have to offer, but hasn’t been really responsive with sales team members.

This person is interested but busy. He has a problem and you can solve it, but he’s been meaning to call your sales rep back for some time now until that day when the salesperson leaves him a message saying they won something in return for confirming their mailing address.

5. Prioritize the Leads & Plan Your Outreach

Your hot leads should be treated differently from those who were just browsing your booth. If you noticed someone was interested and they walked away, don’t give up on them! They might still need what you’re selling.

If you already had an existing contact with a company, prioritizing them would make sense.

Even if you didn’t get the contact’s badge scanned at your booth, make sure to follow up with them for more information.

6. Trade Show Follow Up Template

It’s important to include the person who manages email marketing in this process. They will be able to provide some insight on what would work best with your company.

  • Make sure that your statement is short.
  • The first thing you should do when a visitor comes to your booth is say thank you.
  • Keep your CTA short and concise, so it’s clear what they’re opting into. For example: an opt-in for a grand prize consideration, or free premium content.

– Next Steps: 1-3 Business Days After the Event

Follow up with booth visitors by sending an email that asks them to confirm if they want to be considered for your drawing.

When someone clicks on the link, they are brought to a landing page with an option for them to enter. They can’t get in without entering their email address and name.

You need to prioritize these people because they are the ones who said, “I want a demo.” Your sales team is also given emails from them so you don’t forget about them.

– Next Steps: 1 Week After the Event

Send a modified version of the first email to any booth leads who have not yet clicked that call to action. The reason being they were probably traveling and had a crazy inbox, so it might be difficult for them to find your original message in their overflowing mailbox.

– Next Steps: 2 Weeks After the Event

This is their last chance. If they don’t submit the form by Friday, there won’t be hope for them to win that shiny new gadget.

7. Pull Lists of Leads Into Your Marketing Automation Platform 

These cookies are helping us get better lists in our marketing automation system.

  • They wanted to know what pages they visited after entering the giveaway.
  • Did they follow your blog?
  • Did they sign up for webinars?
  • Did they actually sign up for your free premium content?

These new leads should be triggered by your content and then sorted into different workflows depending on which persona or vertical they fit in with the rest of your pipeline.

The winner is chosen at the end of week two following the event.

8. Consider Social Re-Targeting Ads Unconverted Leads

Facebook re-targeting is one of the most powerful advertising options for B2B marketers right now.


The social media site is a popular place for people to spend their free time because it’s entertaining and you can see what your friends are up to.

It’s the one time where people are more likely to talk with you because they don’t have their guard up.

Unlike LinkedIn, on Facebook you can’t be as spammy with your sales tactics and cold pitches.

You can use Facebook ads to continue reaching leads who haven’t engaged with you yet.

9. Book Demos & Announce Your Contest Winners

Now, the prospect should be very happy to schedule a demo with you.

If you want to be generous, send an email about your contest winners to everyone on the list. You don’t just have to notify them of who won.

10. Measure Results & Refine Your Process

It’s important to track where these leads come from. If you’re at a trade show, it might be easy for your sales team to know which event was the most profitable ROI-wise. Otherwise, you should still keep them in mind and give them the same attention as other prospects.

Need Help Automating Your Sales Prospecting Process?

LeadFuze gives you all the data you need to find ideal leads, including full contact information.

Go through a variety of filters to zero in on the leads you want to reach. This is crazy specific, but you could find all the people that match the following:Ā 

  • A company in the Financial Services or Banking industry
  • Who have more than 10 employees
  • That spend money on Adwords
  • Who use Hubspot
  • Who currently have job openings for marketing help
  • With the role of HR Manager
  • That has only been in this role for less than 1 year
Just to give you an idea. šŸ˜€
Editors Note:

Want to help contribute to future articles? Have data-backed and tactical advice to share? Iā€™d love to hear from you!

We have over 60,000 monthly readers that would love to see it! Contact us and let's discuss your ideas!

Justin McGill
About Author: Justin McGill
Justin McGill is the Founder of LeadFuze - a lead generation platform that discovers new leads for you automatically. Get 25 leads free.