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Better Ways to Qualify Leads at the Trade Show

Qualifying LeadsYou’re on the trade show floor, ready to make the most of the time and effort it took to get there. People drift in and out of your booth throughout the day and you’ve got to quickly judge who’s hot and who’s not.

B2B Magazine Blog Post of the WeekThe trick is to start a conversation that will help you determine if a visitor is a qualified sales lead. The best way to do that is by asking questions.

Typical closed-ended questions such as “May I help you?” get you useless answers like “No thank. Just looking.”

So start off with an open-ended question like “Out of all the places you could be today, why did you choose to come to this show?” or “With all the exhibits you could visit this afternoon, what brought you to ours?”

Then keep the conversation going by turning your typically closed-ended questions about budget, authority, need and timing into open-ended questions. For example, ask “How does this kind of purchase get funded at your company?” and “Who all is involved in the decision process, and what are their roles?” and “What problems are you trying to solve?” and “When do you think you’ll be making the decision to go ahead?”

And one last tip…

If you have determined that a visitor to your trade show exhibit isn’t qualified, but he continues to monopolize your time, end the conversation quickly but politely. How? By handing him a brochure while saying something like, “Here’s some additional information about our product that you can review back at the office.” Next say “Thanks for stopping by.” and shake his hand. Then turn and walk away.

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