Using content to maximize your investment in North America’s biggest construction show
By now, your feet have probably recovered from CONEXPO-CON/AGG & IFPE 2017, the global mega-construction trade show, held in Las Vegas, NV, March 7-11, 2017. However, if you were one of the more than 2,800 exhibitors that occupied a record 2.8 million-plus net square feet of exhibit space, and attempted to engage with 130,000 attendees, the real work is just beginning.
The most obvious post-show task is to follow-up with those who visited your exhibit. However, studies show that nearly 70 percent of exhibitors at a given trade show never contact a prospect who visited their exhibit booth. While that stat may be shocking, many companies struggle to find the time and resources for post-show follow-up. However, even now, weeks after the show, it’s not too late to take charge of post-show marketing efforts.
There is still time to capture and maintain the interest in your company and products among those who attended CONEXPO-CON/AGG & IFPE 2017 with the goal of establishing a long-term relationship with them.
Post-Show Success Begins and Ends with Content
Here is a simple guide to post-CONEXPO-CON/AGG & IFPE 2017 content marketing:
Publish content on your company’s website.
The biggest aggravation for any potential or existing customer is not having current information available online. Immediate access to information is what all consumers demand today.
Be sure that your website is up-to-date, especially with information about the products and services that were displayed at CONEXPO-CON/AGG & IFPE 2017. There are probably more people interested in your products who did not attend the show. Consider this an opportunity to make them feel like they were there.
Include access to product specifications, photos taken at your exhibit and photos of equipment in field situations. If products were demonstrated at the show, be sure to include an action-filled informational video. Include other videos as well. Have a company spokesperson, a product manager or company engineer, explain product features and benefits via video because everyone wants to hear from an informed voice.
Collectively, your online content surrounding the show will enhance your sales message and generate enthusiasm and leads among website visitors.
2. E-blast content to those who visited your exhibit.
Be proactive with attendees who visited your exhibit. Send a personalized email to everyone who visited. It should say something like, “Dear Mr. Smith. Thank you your visiting our exhibit booth at CONEXPO-CON/AGG & IFPE 2017. Here is product information about…” The email should link to a digital pdf or web page highlighting your company’s activity at the show, including information about the products and services displayed. To drive response, include as many responsive offerings as possible so you’re not limiting content directed toward a narrow group or low level of interest.
Link to videos of the displayed products working on a job site, specifications, case histories, testimonials, and white papers. Remember, the more relevant content and links you offer, the better chance the recipient will engage in your products, services and company. If possible, include the name of the attendee’s local dealer/distributor or outlet where your products can be purchased, if not, provide the full list.
Finally, include a call to action. Provide the recipient with specific options for engagement, such as “Download our case history,” “Read our white paper,” “Request a product demonstration,” “Download product specs,” and more.
After the person engages, ask for additional information. This can provide you with new intelligence for more successful follow-up efforts. For example, you might ask about the size of the company, products owned or when they plan to purchase.
Be sure to track and store info on who engages with the e-blast content for further follow-up. For example, if Mr. Smith clicked on the link for Product A, be sure you include him on a list of those interested in Product A.
3. E-blast content to those who did not visit your exhibit booth, but attended the show.
As an exhibitor, you can purchase a list of those who attended the show. Request the list by the type of business that reflects your ideal prospect. (i.e. highway contractor, building contractor, sales volume; etc.) After you receive it, remove the names of anyone who visited your booth.
Now create a similar e-blast to those who visited your booth, with a link to a digital pdf or web page highlighting your company’s activity at CONEXPO-CON/AGG & IFPE 2017.
The email for non-visitors should also personally addresses the attendee, saying something like, “Dear Ms. Jones. We’re sorry we missed you during CONEXPO-CON/AGG & IFPE 2017, but wanted to be sure you were aware of the new products and services we had on display at the show…”
The same recommendations for content, calls to action and database management apply to the email for non-visitors of your booth.
4. Use social media for post-show content.
In addition to your website and email follow-up, use social media channels to reach CONEXPO-CON/AGG & IFPE 2017 attendees and others of interest to your company. Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn can be particularly helpful in spreading the word, both domestically and globally. These platforms open the possibility for connecting with other customer groups of interest to your company.
One particular way of using social media is by rolling out, on a daily or weekly basis, a link featuring a product displayed at CONEXPO-CON/AGG & IFPE 2017.
5. Product blog posts extend the value of your investment in CONEXPO-CON/AGG & IFPE 2017.
What better way to get a dialogue started about your products and company than through a blog that can be included on your company website and in e-blasts to your CONEXPO-CON/AGG & IFPE 2017 list?
Let readers ask questions. If you wish to avoid a “comments” section, then include a Q&A, which allows you to maintain control of the conversation. You might even call it “Q&A from the CONEXPO/CON/AGG Show”.
Blogs can also include videos, testimonials and just about any other original or repurposed content you wish to make known. Answer the questions that potential customers might have about new products and new technologies.
6. Explore Augmented Reality and Virtual Reality Content
Augmented Reality and Virtual Reality have arrived and will soon be staples of business-to-business marketing programs. Each technique can be embedded in your content and can serve as an integral part of your CONEXPO-CON/AGG & IFPE 2017 promotion.
Augmented Reality provides a live direct or indirect view of a physical, real-world environment whose elements are augmented (or supplemented) by computer-generated sensory input such as sound, video, graphics or GPS data.
Engagement in Augmented Reality (AR) is relatively easy. In its simplest form, the recipient downloads your AR app (Free from a Google or Apple store). Much like a QR code, the app will scan a code you provide with the recipient allowed to view what you have offered on their phone or other mobile device.
In the case of CONEXPO-CON/AGG & IFPE 2017, the AR offering could be everything you’ve offered on your website, through e-blasts and social media, and more!
Virtual Reality (VR) simulates a real or imagined physical event. Many companies now use VR in product training or to demonstrate a product’s capability..
With the excitement of virtual reality, you might offer various twists and turns to enhance the understanding (and the excitement) of your products and services.
Use Content to Your Advantage
Instead of fretting over the trade show bills, it’s time to allow content, both original and re-purposed, to amortize your company’s investment in CONEXPO-CON/AGG & IFPE 2017. Most of what you need is already at your fingertips. Take the extra steps you need to continue the momentum created by a successful exhibit. If the statistics are correct, you will be among the 30% of companies who are taking trade show follow-up seriously.