Marketing operations and revenue ops experts: Learn how to automatically upload a list of trade show notes directly into your marketing automation platform and CRM, enabling sales to deliver more seamless and personalized follow-ups that drive better conversion rates. Trade shows and conferences offer a unique opportunity to have face-to-face interactions with a high volume of prospects in a short time. However, gaps in your follow-up process can create headaches and delays when processing leads.
A surprising 76% of sales professionals treat trade show lead follow-ups as cold calls, suggesting that the qualifying and relationship building at conferences isn’t surviving the marketing-sales handoff. However, the situation isn’t as surprising when you consider that the majority of trade show exhibitors are barely capturing any notes on a given lead.
Most exhibitors only record a lead’s contact information and level of interest during a trade show. Source: CEIR
You’d think a sales team would want to ensure the highest possible chance to win every deal by carefully including any notes pertaining to a deal - especially a face-to-face meeting at a relevant event - in their CRM. Unfortunately, recording this kind of intel in CRM is easier said than done. A common reason why trade show intel doesn’t regularly make its way into CRM is the lack of custom fields. Because most operations teams don’t have a way to seamlessly create, populate, or manage custom fields in CRM, they may end up doing a lot of manual copy-pasting. In many cases, exhibitors record just contact information and a general gauge of interest and leave it at that.
However, operations professionals are closing the gap to ensure that warm trade show leads receive warm follow-up by using automation. They’re using new automation technology to not only surface trade show insights directly to sales, but also encourage exhibitors to collect more information on leads, all while maximizing the ROI of resource-intensive events.
Using the power of a General Automation Platform (GAP), your revenue operations team can easily create an automated workflow that uploads insights from trade shows into your CRM. GAPs combine the ability to seamlessly integrate any apps in your revenue stack at the API level with the ability to orchestrate multi-step processes across your CRM and other apps - all with an easy-to-use, drag-and-drop interface.
When revenue operations teams combine automated trade show follow-up with workflows for automated lead list uploads and enrichment, they can ensure their investment in trade shows achieves its maximum impact across their revenue funnel. As a bonus, their events team won’t have to go through the manual process of adding scattered notes to hundreds of leads ever again.
Before we dive into the walkthrough, let’s take a look at some of the details we can capture at trade shows and how these details can prompt more-effective follow-ups. Here at Tray.io, we typically record the following:
Armed with this information, our reps can send personalized follow-ups that build on the relationships made during a trade show. Instead of following up with a message like:
“Thanks for stopping by our booth at ABC Tradeshow! I'd love to connect to learn more about your needs and share how our company can help you.”
You can send a message that stands out and conveys genuine interest in a partnership, like:
“I understand you stopped by our booth at ABC Tradeshow and spoke to my colleagues X and Y. They shared with me that you're interested in XX and are currently facing challenges with YY. It would be great to show you how our company can help.”
For this walkthrough, we’ve separated our workflow into three stages:
The form trigger generates a web form to capture our CSV of trade show notes.
To ensure that our workflow is accessible to any team member tasked with uploading notes from trade shows, we use the Tray Platform to create and host a web form. It captures the information we need to update records in our CRM. Our form includes two fields:
When an end-user submits this form, it alerts our workflow that we have a new list of notes to add and kicks off the additional logic.
Our workflow extracts and formats our CSV from the web form.
Import CSV - Once we’ve received a CSV from our web form, our workflow imports the list to begin processing leads.
Count & get CSV - This stage kicks off a string of CSV helpers used to count the number of rows and pull the notes from each row in our sheet. These helpers provide us context for our loop helper, which we will use to parse each row individually in our next stage.
Our loop helper allows us to parse every record individually to determine its type.
Loop rows - Now that we have all of the information we need from our sheet, we use a loop helper to apply the following logic to each unique record:
Once we’ve determined the CRM record type, our workflow uploads the trade show notes and sends an alert to the owner.
Add note - Our workflow now appends each note to a custom field, using the ‘note title’ supplied from our initial form, separating with a line break if there are previous notes. Since our workflow takes our in-depth trade show conversation notes and populates them into CRM custom fields, our sales teams can use this intel to send personalized follow-ups with a stronger chance of converting leads into sales opportunities, or to accelerate deals that are already active opportunities.
Send alert - Finally, we identify the account owner and send an alert via our internal messaging tool. It details the account information and any new notes to ensure that these valuable insights don’t go unnoticed.
You should now have a better idea of how to use automation to close gaps in trade show follow-up to drive more ROI from trade shows. Learn how to streamline more revenue processes and drive more conversions with a GAP by signing up for one of our weekly group demos.