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This week’s entry comes to us from Susan A. Enns, B2B Sales Coach from B2B Sales Connections. Ms. Enns writes about the new business etiquette that salespeople must remember among the flurry of technology in today’s times:
Technology has changed our lives forever. We can now communicate with virtually anyone, anywhere at any time. However, technology has also created a new set of rules for what I consider acceptable and unacceptable behavior.
Some believe this new business etiquette to be generational in nature; that since those who are younger grew up with technology, it is only them who make these faux pas. Since I have personally experienced people of all ages make these mistakes, I say age has nothing to do with it.
Let me give you some examples. I am in the process of making a major purchase. The product I will be buying is irrelevant, just suffice it to say it is a large ticket item and I will be comparing many competitive products and talking to many sales people before I finally make my purchase.
In one instance, the sales representative’s cell phone rang during our conversation. He took the call, and to my surprise, he chatted for several minutes while I waited. Not too long after that call was done and we started talking again, his cell phone rang again. When he answered a second call, I literally walked out of his office. Remember, one prospect face to face is worth two on the smart phone.
This was not a young rookie either. Although he told me on several occasions he had 30 years of experience, I kept thinking he had 1 year’s bad experience repeated 30 times!
Another sales representative kept saying he answers his cell phone 24/7, 365 days a year. Seriously? You will really take my call at 8:00 am Christmas morning? Not only did I not believe this, but I also started to question all the other claims he made about customer service during his sales presentation.
Just like your cell phone, texting during meetings is also inappropriate. It doesn’t work to hide your phone under the boardroom table either. Everyone in the meeting sees you looking down and it is very obvious that you have lost focus.
Web surfing while dining, be it with business associates or friends is also not acceptable. Besides, isn’t the whole point of social networking to connect with people? It’s more effective to connect with the person sitting across from you rather than tweeting about who you are with.
Some other business etiquette tips to remember are:
- When you are using a speaker phone or hosting a conference call, you should announce who else is in the room.
- When you meet someone, make eye contact, smile, and give them a firm hand shake. Gentlemen, don’t dislocated the person’s shoulder by shaking too hard. Ladies, the palm of your hand should be perpendicular to the ground, and your hand should not bend at the knuckles.
- When you are introduced to someone, always call them by the name you are given. Don’t assume that you can shorten Susan to Sue or Thomas to Tom.
Yes, technology has opened up a whole new world of possibilities for us. However, just because you can doesn’t mean you should!
Stay tuned for more relevant content on creating world-class B2B Telesales, B2B telemarketing and B2B Inside Sales strategies. We at SalesFish Brand Marketing & Sales thank you for joining us in our commitment to unwavering strategic planning, B2B brand marketing and B2B sales execution.
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Welcome to SalesFish Experiential Event Marketing and Sales, California’s most strategically-biased event planning, event management, event marketing, sponsorship sales, exhibit sales, telemarketing services, and event marketing agency.
We serve Sacramento, San Francisco, San Jose, Los Angeles, Orange County, San Diego, Portland, and Seattle. We are very much at home in all 50 United States. Partner with a client centric B2B Market Agency that puts skin in the game… from strategic Telemarketing Services to Experiential Event Marketing.
Today’s Event Marketing post comes to us from Mike Thimmesch of www.skylinetradeshowtips.com. Mr. Thimmesch offers great advice on lead generation for your trade show:
100 Trade Show Lead Generation Ideas
May 01, 2010 | Mike Thimmesch
For most exhibitors, lead generation is their #1 reason for exhibiting at trade shows. Exhibit marketers want leads to replenish their sales pipeline, bring in new and repeat customers, and generate sales revenue.
So to help stoke the lead generation fires, here are 100 ideas to get you more leads at your upcoming trade shows, divvied up among 5 main areas:
Get more trade show leads by how you select shows
- Go to more trade shows outside your local region
- Go to more trade shows, in your best vertical markets
- Go to more trade shows, in foreign countries
- Go to fewer trade shows, but put more effort into booth staff preparation and promotions for each remaining show
- Exhibit at trade shows where your buyers are
- Track leads to determine and expand in the shows with the best ROI
- Evolve show selection to match changes in company’s best vertical markets
Get more trade show leads with your exhibit design
- Get a bigger booth
- Get a booth space closer to the hub of traffic, or by a bigger competitor
- Get a corner booth space
- Backlight your trade show display graphics
- Design your exhibit to more boldly and clearly say why attendees will benefit from working with you
- Put fewer elements on your exhibit, but make the remaining images and messages bigger and more concise
- Use graphics with images and benefits that appeal more directly to attendees at your vertical market shows
- Put benefit statements on your trade show exhibit graphics
- Replace your tired old display with a new trade show exhibit
- Make your exhibit architecture more inviting to enter
- Pick more exciting colors on your exhibit
- Bring fewer products, such as only your most popular products, to minimize clutter
- Get a taller exhibit
- Add more lighting
- Put messages on your flooring
- Avoid an exhibit that looks like everyone else
- Keep your booth neat and clean throughout the show
- Move interesting equipment and technology to the outside of the booth
- Use a theme that gets attention and memorably ties into your competitive advantage or offering
- Match your exhibit message to your other marketing materials
Get more trade show leads with pre-show promotions
- Send an inexpensive postcard offering a free gift in your trade show booth
- Run a banner ad on the show website
- Send a pre-show email blast to your clients and top prospects located close to the show location
- Put stickers with booth location and show info on all outgoing mail
- Email invitation to a pre-show microsite with targeted messages and offers
- Have your sales people invite their prospects to visit your booth and set up meetings in advance
- Send an email invitation to the show’s pre-registered attendee list for this year, and the registered attendee list from last year
- Use social media to reach more attendees
- Send half of something of value to attendees before the show, and promise to give the other half in your booth
- Contact your industry press and tell them about the innovative new product you will be introducing at the show
- Put your booth number on all your pre-show promotions: email, mail, ads, website
- Design more creative and compelling pre-show promotions to cut through the mailbox clutter
- Invite top prospects to lunch or dinner at the show
- Send a pre-show promotion offering a more valuable gift in the booth, but not to the entire list, but only to the subset of show attendees that match your target audience
- Send free tickets to the trade show to clients and best prospects
- Post your trade show schedule on your website with a link to sign up for appointments
- Ask the show for additional promotional opportunities
Get more trade show leads with at-show promotions and activities
- Introduce a new product at the trade show
- Add motion to your exhibit
- Offer food, especially if it smells good, like baking cookies
- Offer drinks to your booth visitors
- Give your attendees something entertaining and fun to do
- Do an engaging demo in your booth
- Get your client to hold your product
- Go beyond sight to appeal to attendees’ sense of smell, sound, taste, and touch
- Add interactivity
- Run presentations or video loops on large video monitors
- Offer healthy food, not just candy
- Put out a candy or chocolate dish to slow down attendees long enough to engage them
- Offer in-booth massages
- Give a free sample of your product
- Give a free sample of a product made with your product
- Hire a celebrity for your booth, where the celebrity is popular with your target audience at the show
- Hire a celebrity lookalike for your booth, where the celebrity is popular with your target audience at the show
- Giveaway something useful to your target audience
- Hire a performer, such as a magician, to attract attention to your booth
- Have a raffle, sweepstakes, money machine or a game
- Hold a press conference if you have newsworthy news
- Sponsor something highly visible at the show
- Have a contest for attendees in your booth
- Get signage in the show hall promoting your booth presence
- Offer a show special or discount
- Get someone from your company to be a speaker at the show
- Give presentations or educational sessions in your booth
- Do door drops that target only show attendees at their hotel rooms
- Pay to include an invite or a gift in the official show bag each attendee gets
- Put an ad in the show book
- Brand your staffers with outfits or similar attire
- Offer one really big prize (worth thousands of dollars) to get more attention
Get more trade show leads with better booth staffing
- Bring more booth staffers
- Bring booth staffers who actually want to be there
- Hold a contest to reward the staffers who take the highest quantity of qualified leads
- Leave your wallflowers at home
- Train your booth staff how to work a trade show booth
- Communicate to your staff the company’s goals and your expectations of them in the booth
- Don’t use booth staffing as a training ground for brand-new employees
- Ask visitors open-ended questions and listen to their answers
- Get faster at recording each lead by not writing down every visitor’s name and address, but instead using a badge scanner
- Have enough badge scanners to avoid lines with your booth staffers in busy times
- Bring crowd gatherers (not booth babes)
- Keep your booth staffers fresh by giving them regular breaks
- Learn to more quickly disengage with unqualified attendees
- Thoroughly train your booth staffers on the new products you are introducing at the show or just introduced recently
- Make friends with your neighboring exhibitors, and refer attendees back and forth
- Bring your top management to booth staff, and tell attendees they will be there
- Get staffers out of the bowels of your booth and out to the edge of the aisle
- Don’t sit down in your booth, unless you are talking with visitors
- Don’t hide behind tables
- Instead of giving away literature, offer to mail it to attendees, and get their contact info
- Prepare your booth staffers with several good engaging questions
- Arm your booth staffers with answers to common objections
100.Train your booth staffers to know your products and how they solve your clients’ problems
Which of these 100 ideas will you choose? Perhaps you are already doing several yourselves. Some can be combined to be used simultaneously. It’s a long list, and there’s no way anyone can do all 100. Some of them even contradict each other.
Yet as Bob Milam advises, while knowing a lot of tactics is useful, knowing which tactics to use and when to use them is even more useful. Determine your strategy first, then choose among these trade show tactics the most appropriate ones to support your strategy and generate more leads.
Also, while I’ve listed many tactics to get more leads, of course you need to also strive for getting higher quality leads. And if you can do both, go to the head of the class.
Stay tuned for future relevant Event Planning, Event Management, Event Marketing, Exhibit Sales and Sponsorship Sales content.
We at SalesFish Event Marketing & Sales thank you for joining us in our commitment to unwavering Strategic Event planning, Event Management, B2B telemarketing, B2B Tele-Sales, B2B Inside Sales, Sponsorship Sales, Exhibit Sales, Audience Acquisition, Brand marketing and Execution.
The SalesFish team brings more than 30 years’ experience, and more importantly, extreme focus in each of the following disciplines:
- Event Management, Planning and Marketing / Advertising: Positioning, Branding, Brand Identity Marketing, Creative, Public Relations, Advertising, Direct Response, Multi-Media, Interactive Media, Promotional and Web Design
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We welcome the chance to cast your net in the area of Event Management, Event Branding, Event Marketing, Event Sales, Event Promotion and Execution.
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