Here’s a quick guide to maximize your results post-Expo West
You’ve spent the past several days knee deep in innovation among some of the biggest names in the natural products space. If you spent your time right, your pockets are likely stuffed with business cards from networking your heart out, you’re buzzing with energy and ideas, and you’re surely eager to take action on all of the information and knowledge you picked up during the show. That said, your brain is probably overwhelmed with information overload and you’re unsure of the best plan of attack. Bear in mind that all of the preparation your team has done for Expo West is for naught without continuing the work after March 11th; Expo West was the foundation and now it’s time to build. Below we’ve put together a quick guide to get you started on the road to your next milestone.
The art of the follow up
With a conglomeration of nearly 120,000 attendees and 3,100 exhibits, lots of connections are made. You might have met buyers looking to purchase product, media seeking information about your next product development, consumers providing valuable feedback, and more. Before wasting your efforts reaching out to everyone, pull those business cards out of your pocket and begin identifying which leads are real and which can be put on the back burner. Examine all of the business cards you have collected and organize them. Which do you need to save for reference? Which can you discard? And, most importantly, which need to be followed up on immediately. For example, for any media opportunities, share requested assets, samples, etc. with the writers immediately. For any business prospects, reach out and recap your conversation— everyone is in a fog post trade show and business partners will appreciate the attention to detail of recalling conversations. In terms of follow-up, recognize that all parties are traveling home and catching up on work post-Expo. Give yourself a few days to get organized and then put to good use all of the networking you have accomplished.
Identify mistakes and create new solutions
It’s always a great idea to meet internally with your full team to determine which areas could be improved prior to embarking on your next trade show. Was your booth adequately staffed or would it be a good idea to outsource and work with a staffing agency? Were you short on product, collateral and press kits or did you have an overwhelming surplus after the show? Upon looking at how your competitors set up their booths, might there be ideas you could adapt from them to optimize your booth? Make a list of tweaks for next show, even if you think your appearance was successful; there’s always room to improve, and you may even want to begin taking action for Expo East in Baltimore this September.
Celebrate your wins
Whether it’s a new business deal, an exciting partnership in the works, or even positive feedback on the launch of a new product, celebrate every win with your team no matter how small. The amount of work involved to have a successful trade show experience is exhausting to say the least, so taking time to revel in your team’s success before throwing yourself back into those long nights of work is necessary for morale.
A pat on the back is definitely in order–you’ve made it through one of your industry’s largest and busiest trade shows. Though there may still continued work on the horizon to grow your brand and business to meet its potential, you’ve officially taken a significant step in the right direction.