So your primary aim at a wedding fair should be to capture details of potential leads. Why? Because your business will only grow when customers bring money into your business. And if you are sitting back waiting for the client to come to you then you are missing a trick!
But capturing new leads has to be seen as one step in a bigger process. Before you can capture leads you should have designed a stand that appeals to your ideal client, you will have decided who exactly you are trying to target at this wedding expo, and you have prepared some conversation starters that don’t start with “so you’re getting married?” With this in mind here are a few strategies for capturing details.
First of all you need to think about how you want to approach these new leads after the show. So do you want to have an e-mail list that you can send them all the same email after the show? Do you want to connect with them on your preferred social media channel, so that you can target them with a social media advert or just engage with them directly via social media? Do you want to see them face to face and book an appointment? The end result that you are looking for should dictate how you capture the leads.
Once you know how you want to connect with your new leads you can then choose the most efficient way to capture their details.
End result – creating an email list of potential leads
Fastest way to do this is to have an app on a tablet or phone that they can add their name, email and wedding date to which saves straight into your email automation product (don’t have one – get one! Cheap packages are out there. For a good entry level package check out Mailchimp). Doing this means that you have the information saved straight to where you will use it after the expo so no need to do anything but send them an email. You can also set this up so that they receive an instant email from you in which you may want to include any special deals you are offering at the show or just some more details about where to find more information about your business.
The old fashioned route is pen and paper taking email addresses, there is nothing wrong with this except that you may not be able to read their writing. If they type it into a device at least you know it’s legible! Pen and paper means that you are also more likely to misplace it when you dress down your stand, and of course you have to take extra time to collate all the emails and do something with them after the show.
End result – connecting on social media
So with social media you have a few different options, and the nice part is that you physically don’t have to do anything – the emphasis is on the client to connect, but that can also be a drawback too!
Run a promotion from your stand that offers something extra with a new booking or a discount to people who have attended the wedding show, but a condition of receiving this is that you must follow a given social media channel. Have your social handle on display and encourage people to follow now to get the desired benefit. You may even choose to offer a great deal to 1 new follower that is randomly selected after the show if you don’t want to give too much away. For a social promotion pick one social media channel only, and select the channel that you have the best success with and the most interactions with.
To make even more of a splash, ask the potential leads to take a photo of something on your stand, or create a selfie station with some of your products on your stand, get them to post it on social media and tag you in and like your account to be included in the promotion. Free marketing and PR!
So there are instant benefits of this connection. Your social media following increases and you can have a number of pre-planned posts ready to send, or scheduled, for the days after the show to keep your business in their mind. If they follow you on Instagram and they have a public account you can then see which other suppliers they follow and this can help you to build up a picture of the kinds of things that your client likes. If you have chosen a Facebook account then you can target your followers directly with a Facebook advert campaign after the show.
End result – booking an appointment
To book an appointment you need to have a calendar. You can go old school and bring a physical diary, or you can set up and use an app. To find one that works for you simply search for “booking appointment app”. So before you even get to the show you can set up the next few days, weekends or weeks with appointment slots that are available and simply book people in to come and see you face to face. Just make sure that you also have some form of contact details either email or phone number so that you can reconfirm their appointment and build rapport with them by sending them directions or other helpful information before they are scheduled to meet you.
For any of these approaches to be successful they need to be part of a bigger plan or strategy. You can’t expect people to leave their details with you if your stand doesn’t scream at them that you are the supplier for them. Depending on the section of the wedding market in which you work, you may need to have a great offer or promotion to entice them to connect with you. And of course you need to have your end game already figured out – once you have their details what next?