Clearview North Feb 2013 - Issue 135 - Page 46

INDUSTRYNEWS Exhibition Fever! With Ecobuild and the FIT Show looming, marketing expert ANDREW SCOTT urges companies to embrace lead nurturing. There is real buzz and excitement across the industry at the moment. After a few years of battening down the hatches many companies are putting their foot on the gas and with shows like Ecobuild and the FIT Show on the horizon, marketing is top of the agenda for many in 2013. Exhibitions create an interesting marketing dynamic. For those exhibiting, investment can be significant and the pressure is on to attract visitors to the stand and convert them to customers. Meanwhile, for those suppliers not exhibiting many are planning high profile marketing campaigns to maintain their position, protect their customers and ensure they get their share of new business. Either way, it is essential to set some realistic targets and track both your results and cost metrics including: • Set a target number of ‘raw’ leads, qualified prospects, and new customers • Similarly record actual numbers generated from the exhibition/ campaign and compare with targets • Calculate cost per qualified sales lead – this is the total cost of the exhibition/campaign (include direct and indirect costs) divided by number of qualified prospects • Similarly calculate cost per customer acquisition Both sides of the exhibition coin can create ‘ripe banana’ syndrome. An exhibition or high-powered marketing campaign can create a sudden surge of sales leads – perhaps even hundreds of leads over the course of a few days. Only 10-20% of these sales leads are ‘ripe’ – those that your sales team can convert to customers in a relatively short space of time. The rest are ‘green’ – they will take longer to ripen. Chances are your sales team will focus on the ‘ripe’ sales leads, and by the time they get around to the rest of them, many will have gone cold or bought elsewhere. This is why sales conversion rates on exhibition leads are often lower than producing a steady stream of leads throughout the year. But it doesn’t have to be that way. If leads are simply passed to your sales team (or dealers/agents) to follow up you could be leaving 80-90% of your prospects wide open to your competitors. But introducing a lead nurturing strategy can transform your sales conversion rates by ‘lining up’ prospects ready for your sales team to convert. Lead nurturing lives in the space between ‘sales lead’ and ‘customer’. It requires a specific process of regular contact from your marketing department, providing meaningful information using a number of different channels – letter, email, telephone, links to blogs, event invites and so on. ‘blend of method, frequency and content’ Some of the content that shoul B&R66FW&VB6VFW3( 6BGW7G'&VFVBWw2B7F&W2( WW'B'F6W2B2w&GFVg&W"6( F&B'G'F6W2FB֖vBFW&W7BFR&7V7B( 66R7GVFW2B7W7FW"&WfWw2( G2BF2( &WFr6FW&BƗFW&GW&R( &W'G2&W6V&6BvFRW'2( 6V֖'2VF2BWfVG27&VFrFR&vB&VBbWFBg&WVV7B6FVB2'FB6R6W2fRWFFVBF2vF6W&W2b&Ww&GFVRWw6WGFW'2FB&R6VB&VwV"&62FW"6W2V7W&RFV"&WFrFW'FVB&GV6R&VwV"&w2ƗFW&GW&RWfVG2B66VF6FVBFW6vVBFfR&7V7G2g&( w&VV&>( F&RfW7FrW&F""&WFr6v67vrWVvR67G2B&W6W&6W27&VFr7W&vR6W2VG2FB&RBv2gVǒWFVB'G&GV6rVBW'GW&rR6WV7BF6fW'B&RVG2F7W7FW'2vRW"6W2FV&RVffV7FfVǒBV7W&RW"W&F"6v&GV6W2V&WGW&fW7FVBG&Wr66GB2vrF&V7F"bW'WFRvFrGW7G'&WFr7V6Ɨ7G2R2fVrbFR7FGWFRb6W2b&WFrvVVBBV&W"bFRF&V7B&WFr766Ff6CwwrW'W&WFr6VC`dT"#0F&VB&Rf6Bwwr6V'fWrV6Р