How ever you do it – do it! You need to think about how you are going to capture and process the details of visitors you meet on your stand. Whether you use a data pen or other type of bar code scanner, whether you are going to input their details manually, use a business card reader or whether you are going to rely on good old fashioned pen and paper doesn’t matter. What’s important is that you capture the details that you can then follow up on later.
The latest technology is excellent in that it allows you to get their details quickly and produce downloadable outputs or reports on a daily basis. There may be some limitations – a light pen may not work so well at an outdoor event if the sun is shining but in most instances you can test them in advance. Think also about how many staff you intend having on your stand and whether they will all require a data capture device or whether you are going to assign roles. Think through the process from scanning a badge through to safe receipt to dissemination to the sales team through to matching it to your company database. Will the person collecting the lead also be the same as the one who follows it up? You might need to grade your prospects into hot, warm and cold so your sales staff have some sort of priority to work from.