Yesterday I was doing some work with Brainshark, building a recorded presentation. I went to their website to watch one of their own recorded marketing presentations to get some ideas and see how a feature worked. A short time later I got a call from an inside sales guy at Brainshark saying that he noticed I had viewed the presentation and offering to help answer any questions or give me pricing if I had a need for their product. I explained that even though I was watching a marketing presentation I was a current user rather than a sales prospect. We both had a quick laugh, he thanked me for using the product and signed off.
Today I was working on some other activities when I got a phone call from an inside sales guy at Microsoft. He said he was following up on a Live Meeting presentation I attended and wanted to see if he could answer any questions. I was puzzled, as I couldn't remember attending a presentation of theirs. Then he said, "Yes, it was a March 28th event." Whoa... March 28th? I glanced over at my desk calendar to make sure I hadn't missed anything. Nope, it was May 1.
I told the guy that I honestly didn't remember anything about the event. Maybe I showed up and left early for some reason. Maybe I watched the whole thing and it just didn't stick in my mind. But the bottom line is that his window of opportunity had long ago closed. I asked whether he didn't think that was kind of a long time ago to be asking for feedback and next steps. He said, "Hey, I just call 'em as I get 'em."
Aside from the sterling attitude and personal commitment evidenced by his answer, it put me in mind of a best practices tenet for conducting web seminars. Followup with attendees (and registrants) is like raw fish in the refrigerator. It rapidly transforms from something with value to something distasteful. Your attendees are more willing to accept a contact from you and give you their information or their time when they have a clear memory of having recently received something from you... The information in your webinar. Once the memory fades, you are back to joining a million other one-sided demands for their attention.
There is a reason that old chestnuts stick around as common sayings. "Strike while the iron is hot" is a good one to remember when driving your post-event actions.