7 Ways to Keep Track of Sales Contacts at Networking Events

Det er enkelt å treffe nye mennesker på en forretningskonferanse eller et nettverksarrangement. Det er en helt annen sak å gjøre disse nye kontaktene til faktiske forretningsforbindelser.

Sales teams often attend conferences and networking events “just to get their name out there,” with no strategy for what to do and how to keep the contacts they collect. Trying to prospect for leads among the masses of a conference hall can be an overwhelming experience.

Here are five things sales reps can do to get the most out of conferences and networking events and come away with more than just a stack of business cards.

How to keep track of networking contacts

Here are seven things sales reps can do to get the most out of conferences and networking events, and come away with more than just a stack of business cards.

1. Find out who’s going

Understanding the event’s audience can help you zero in on your goals. Is the event specific to a certain industry? What topics are people paying to learn more about? Many events and conferences offer ways for sales reps to find out who will be attending. With an attendee list in hand, you can create a targeted list of people to email pre-event.

Ways to discover attendees include:

  • Gjennomgang av foredragsholderlisten
  • Se hvem som tvitrer om arrangementet
  • Bli med i et arrangements Facebook-gruppe og sjekke medlemslisten

Når du kartlegger målgruppen, kan du planlegge slik at du har mulighet til å ta personlig kontakt med potensielle kunder eller identifisere andre nye muligheter for forretningsutvikling.

Det er for eksempel ikke sikkert at programlederen for en podkast som er populær blant kundene dine, er en potensiell kunde for bedriften din, men å finne en måte å presentere deg selv på kan være det første skrittet mot et verdifullt samarbeid om markedsføring.

2. Keep your customer success team in the loop

Hvis noen av deltakerne på arrangementet er eksisterende kunder, bør du sørge for å koordinere med kundesuksessteamet på forhånd. Det kan være muligheter for å informere eksisterende kunder om nye produkter eller sikre at de fortsatt er fornøyde med tjenestene dine. Selskapets supportteam kan gi viktig informasjon om hvem som kan trenge spesiell oppmerksomhet.

But beware of a common pitfall: overspending your time talking to chatty clients. Make sure you have an exit plan in place for customer conversations so that you can maximize your time during the event. Connecting with new and existing clients should be a secondary part of your strategy; pursuing new opportunities should come first.

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3. Use a mobile customer relationship management (CRM) platform

After an event, many sales contacts slip through the cracks when a rep does not enter the information into their CRM. Having a mobile CRM at your disposal means that you can add your new contacts directly after each meeting—and at the touch of a button if your CRM app happens to have a business card scanner.

But what if potential leads don’t have a business card on them? “Take out your phone and open LinkedIn. Hand it to the person you are talking to, and say, ‘It’s been nice speaking with you. Would you mind looking yourself up?’ Invariably, the person does, and you make a connection,” advises Mike Schultz, President of RAIN Group.

I tillegg til rask dataregistrering kan et mobilt CRM-system også hjelpe selgerne med å prioritere innsatsen ved å gi dem informasjon om leads i sanntid. Med mobilvarslinger kan du få varsler hvis salgsadministratorer eller ledere kvalifiserer leads på hjemmekontoret. På den måten kan du følge opp de nye potensielle kundene personlig før arrangementet avsluttes.

4. Give out a memorable business card

Make your business card more than just a piece of paper, instead turn it into a conversation starter. Experiment with creative designs, incorporating vibrant colors, unique shapes, or even unconventional materials that resonate with your business. Consider functional designs, such as a business card doubling as a bottle opener, ensuring it lingers in the memory of those you meet.

Beyond aesthetics, make your card personal. Add a brief, personalized message like one of your favorite quotes that resonates with the person you’re handing it to. A memorable card increases the chances of being top-of-mind when they need your services, turning a casual connection into a potential business opportunity. This is a quick yet effective way to transform your business card and make it more special.

5. Take notes on every meeting

På mange konferanser vil du sannsynligvis ha spontane møter med personer på målgruppen din eller andre potensielle kunder du tilfeldigvis møter. Alle disse møtene må dokumenteres i CRM-systemet for senere bruk. Når du tar notater, må du huske å ta med eventuelle innvendinger og spørsmål som kommer opp i løpet av samtalen, noe som kan hjelpe deg med å få potensielle kunder raskere videre.

Remember, all interactions should be documented in your CRM as quickly as possible. Once the meeting leaves your memory, the opportunity drifts away.

6. Assign follow-ups and prioritize leads

Før et arrangement begynner, bør du ha en prosess på plass slik at alle i salgsteamet vet hvem som skal følge opp etter arrangementet, og hvordan leads skal prioriteres.

‍“If they came by just for swag, that’s not a hot lead,” says Carrie Simpson, Founder of Managed Sales Pros. “They’ll be in our marketing cadence, but our sales team will not be wasting their time on them. Our best leads say at some point during the conversation at an event they either want to work with us, they’re talking with a competitor, or they’re trying to do it in-house.”

Oppfølgingsprosessen kan også omfatte hvilke ressurser (dvs. innhold, spesifikke tilbud) som skal brukes i den oppsøkende virksomheten. Hvis representantene registrerer de personlige interaksjonene nøyaktig, bør det være relativt enkelt å sende personlige oppfølgingsbrev 24 timer etter arrangementet.

Make sure to tie your new contacts to the right event. Many CRMs have tagging features that can be used for this very purpose. You won’t have any way to measure your ROI on events if sales reps aren’t attributing first contacts to each specific event, and that information is critically important to determine how much money your company should spend on event attendance in the future.

7. Evaluate your networking impact

Keeping track of your networking contacts goes beyond collecting business cards and information. The final thing to remember is to regularly review your networking journey, from identifying potential contacts to converting them into customers. Utilize key metrics like acquired contacts, effective messaging, engagement levels, interaction quality, and referrals received.

This consistent evaluation is a crucial step in refining your networking skills. Understand what aspects are working well and where improvements are needed. By incorporating feedback and analyzing metrics, you not only keep tabs on your connections but also enhance your ability to convert them into valuable, long-term customers.

Looking for software to help you manage business relationships?

When it comes to making the most of the contacts you make at networking events, having the right CRM can make all the difference. CRMs manage your customer data and help your team strengthen relationships with leads to close more deals. An effective, powerful CRM is an essential business tool for making more sales and improving customer relationships. 

If you’re looking for a CRM that makes it easy to track metrics through reportinggives you powerful features to help all of your teams, and provides easy-to-access help from support when needed, consider Nutshell. Nutshell offers robust reporting, a lineup of helpful features like sales automation and email marketing, and free support to all our customers. 

Interested in seeing how Nutshell can help your team work smarter? Sign up for a free trial today!

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