Mastering The Trade Show Follow Up Email



When it comes to building connections, the trade show is only the first part. You made a splash with your exhibit, you made connections, and you have the contacts to prove it – what now? You don’t turn visitors into clients, customers, and connections in just one visit, and the most important part is the follow-up after the fact. Mastering the trade show follow-up email is how you put the hard work to good use.


Preparing for the follow-up contact starts long before the trade show ends. Take notes on interactions, or have a partner take notes while you interact, and keep these notes handy to write out those emails later on. A personalized and friendly experience is one that is always going to make an impact, and in the follow-up email is where you prove just how much you value the personal connections you’ve made. If the attendee mentioned a specific problem they were encountering that your brand could solve, jot this down in your notes. If in conversation you discussed a demonstration you both attended, jot it down to make mention of it later. The more personal details you can include, the more personal connection you’re going to make.

The marketing analytics firm Retention Science performed a study on e-mail subject lines, finding that subject lines that use 6 to 10 words have the highest open rate at 21%. Lines with 5 or fewer words were opened 16% of the time, and lines with more than 11-15 words had a 14% open rate. When you’re starting that subject line, stick to the 6-to-10-word limit and make it personal from the jump. Use your name in the subject line and the brand you represented at the trade show.


Timing is equally important when sending your follow-up email. The Monday after a trade show weekend is a common choice, but it’s best to wait it out just a few days. Most brand representatives will be sending their follow-up emails as soon as possible, which means email inboxes will be getting inundated and many will remain unopened. Waiting about 3 to 5 days after the trade show gives you a better chance to stand out.

Lastly, you will want to keep the email short. A wall of text is the most likely to be ignored, and a standard pitch isn’t going to set you apart. Open with a casual greeting, mention personal details from your notes, and briefly mention the problem your brand can solve. End the email with a friendly invitation to communicate further.

To learn more about maximizing your trade show impact, contact Lighthouse Exhibits.