Updated: December 2nd 2022

Trade shows have always been a staple B2B marketing tactic. The trade show attendance population has changed dramatically since the advent of the internet. The vast array of information available on the internet has made the majority of broad category trade shows not worth the time, effort and money for most businesses to attend. Instead, businesses are focusing on trade shows featuring niche categories, so as to make the best use of their resources. The good news is that, as a result, most trade show attendees are already likely to be highly motivated to learn more about the featured products and services. Therefore the contacts businesses make at trade shows now have a much higher chance of becoming customers, provided the leads are properly nurtured.

B2B Marketing: Timing Is Critical When Nurturing Trade Show Leads

Any B2B marketing campaign should be carefully thought out in terms of what information to capture, what message to deliver and when and how often to deliver the message. The campaign should then be tested for performance. This performance testing is precisely what Craig Mullenbach and MECLABS did in an experiment for an industrial testing equipment manufacturer. The team wanted to determine whether trade show leads were worth contacting and the optimal contact duration. Here is what they discovered.

Maximizing B2B Marketing Trade Show Lead Follow Up Results


Their results confirmed what most marketers already know: in order to retain a lead’s interest, it is imperative to strike while the iron is hot. During this experiment, the leads contacted on the first day accounted for 60% of all the successful lead follow ups. Leads contacted within the first 28 days from sign up accounted for 90% of all successful lead follow ups.

The increase in trade show niche specialization is a blessing in disguise for B2B marketing lead generation. Patrons interested in these highly specialized businesses are proven to be high converting leads, so long as the marketing plan used to contact them is promptly activated.