For each and every show you run you need to sell enough space to ensure the profitability of your event. How successful you are at this is directly related to your sales team’s experience and ability. But is that on the whole story? Not even close! Here's a little step-by-step approach for comprehensive exhibition sales success.
N°1: CLIENT INFORMATION
In order to sell successfully, you need to know what your clients want. And you need to have a good future outlook on your renewals, as they form the basis for your exhibition's success. Imagine you had an easily accessible overview of your clients' preferences and past bookings. Wouldn't it be nice to get back to them in a super professional and efficient manner to ask them if they simply wish to re-book a 10x10 booth in the same area as last year? A good insight into your clients' booking history also improves your upselling chances.
For new business, a good CRM system is vital to help you win those potential clients and manage opportunities. By working with a consistent opportunity management system, your sales staff will be much better organized and more efficient. Reminders and activity tasks help them in their day-to-day sales routine while ensuring that no opportunity is missed.
N° 2: PERFORMANCE MEASURING
Not selling enough space surely is one of the worst nightmares an exhibition manager could have. But there is no need to be afraid if you make sure you are always the one in control. Keep an eye on your numbers so you can monitor your team's progress. Having a good beat on the real-time performance of your sales team is the only way to have the ability to interfere and steer your business in the right direction, if need be.
Maybe you have some high performers that want to share their experiences within the team? It makes sense to identify your top sales performers in order to replicate their best practices and spread them across the entire team. Who generates most of the touch points with potential clients? Is anyone outselling the rest of the team by a wide margin? Knowing the answers to these questions can help you improve sales and grow your business. Not sure where to look? Start with your CRM & sales system.
Strong reporting leads to meaningful insights – and that leads to better business decisions. If you want to run a successful events business, you need to plan ahead and base your decisions on reliable information. A reporting system works best if all exhibition and client information is stored in one place so you can be sure the information you see is reliable.
Ideally, a software system integrates your exhibition and client data so you can directly pull important reports without having to browse through different sources of information. In the end, this is a key factor in being able to make the kind ofdecisions that will help you increase sales.
N°4: A SINGLE DATABASE
It's pretty obvious that selling requires time. And still, I have spoken to so many exhibition sales professionals complaining about extra-hours spent on adminstrative work they aren’t getting paid for. A frustrated salesperson who feels their time is being wasted is never a recipe for success! Make your team's lives easier by giving them tools to simplify their day-to-day tasks. A powerful CRM system that stores all event and client data in a central database is a good place to start.
Working from one database means your team needs to enter information only once – a massive time-saver! This will also improve the accuracy of your contracts and invoices so you reduce any embarassing moments of customers asking your sales team to correct their mistakes. Nothing worse than information being entered multiple times: Not only does this create useless extra-work, it is also an obvious source of errors.
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