After attending Material Handling Equipment Distributors Association (MHEDA), which continues to be the only trade association dedicated solely to improving the proficiency of the independent material handling equipment distributor, there are some objectives you can strive for in order to stay connected to the Material Handling industry. If you followed our tips for preparing for the show, you'll be confident in knowing the time you spent at the MHEDA show was worthwhile.
After the MHEDA trade show:
- Segment Materials. Go through all the materials you gathered at the MHEDA trade show and group them by the product and services that your most interested in learning about.
- Register. If MHEDA has a supplier listing or portal, make sure you register and complete all documentation to be considered for future RFQ’s.
- Add Contacts. Add the business cards you collected to your CRM for further nurturing and tracking.
- Email. Send a personalized email within 3 days (up to 1 week) after the trade show. Make sure to include a call to action (visit website, blog post, white paper download). If you decide to send a bulk non-personalized email, which is not ideal, be sure to us the bcc (blind carbon copy) field so that recipients are restricted to seeing their own email address.
- Call. Pick up the phone and call contacts within 1-2 weeks. You may not call everyone you emailed but perhaps the people you made a special connection with.
- Send Mail. That's right, snail mail! Within 1 to 2 weeks of the MHEDA show send your physical marketing collateral (letter, brochure, thank you card) along with a hand written note and your business card.
- LinkedIn. Connect with the new contacts via LinkedIn and endorse them, pay it forward! Join in the conversation, join groups that new contacts are in. If you haven't already, follow MHEDA's LinkedIn group page.
- Referrals. Don’t be afraid to ask for referrals from your new found contacts.
- Keep in touch. Stay top of mind by scheduling to touch base quarterly.
- Evaluate. Identify if the costs of attending MHEDA, admission, hotels, travel, other expenses and your time. Did the amount of new knowledge and connections make your attendance worth while? Evaluate what went well, what didn't, and what could be improved for next time. Keep it real - don't suggest "better weather" for next year. Pay special attention to feedback regarding communication to prospective customers. The "lessons learned" will help improve your efforts for future trade shows.
There is one crucial thing to remember, make sure you don’t lose the momentum. Impressions from the show may linger for a few days to a week but taper off quickly afterward, so you'll want to tap into the buzz while it's fresh.
Valley Box is a San Diego based industrial packaging company. We create custom material handling solutions which are perfect for assembly lines, warehouses, distribution centers, stock rooms and anywhere else that moving loads is required. Visit the Material Handling section of our website.