You purchased a booth sponsorship at a recent virtual event and generated a bucket of leads. Now it’s time to follow up with those leads, further qualify them and guide them down the sales funnel. Here’s a five step guide on how to follow up with your leads via email.
Step 1: Make it Personal
When a child writes a letter to Santa Claus, it’s personal. When you send a follow-up email to prospects, make them feel like you typed it out by hand (even though we all know you didn’t). Tactics include use of the prospect’s first name (e.g. “Dear Adam”) and company name (e.g. “I’m sure we have plenty of solutions for Acme, Corp”).
If you can create the perception that you wrote out the email by hand, you increase the likelihood that the prospect will respond. For instance, when I receive printed mail with an envelope that appears hand-written, I pay attention to it and open it up for a quick read.
Step 2: Make it relevant
Prospects attend a virtual event for a reason – they’re interested in the topic. Be sure to assert your relevancy up front – if the virtual event was on social gaming, then start your email by demonstrating why your company (and your product) is relevant to social gaming. I see far too many follow-up emails that jump too quickly to a solution, before describing why the solution is relevant.
Step 3: Include a Call To Action
Sure, prospects can always hit “reply” on the email to start a dialog with you, but give them more opportunities to take action. Include a link, a document or an explicit “email us” address, so that prospects know how to take the next step. If your follow-up email provides information, but no call to action, then you’re simply “hoping for the best.”
Step 4: Personalize content offers based on past activity
A little trickier to implement in an automated fashion, but the upside is significant. Consider pairing your content assets – for instance, a document describing your technology is paired with a follow-on document about how to justify its cost to your boss. You place the first document in your virtual booth, but not the second.
For visitors who downloaded the first document, include the second document in your follow-up email. If you do a good job pairing the right documents together, then prospects will feel that you’re highly tuned in to their needs.
Step 5: Keep it focused
Keep your email brief and keep your content offers and calls-to-action to a handful. If presented with too much information or too many choices, prospects may feel overwhelmed and skip your email entirely. Give them a small set of offers and let them choose one.
Email is a common means for following up with virtual event leads, but few exhibitors do it really well. Try out this five step approach and let me know how it goes. Alternatively, leave a comment below to let us know your top tactics.