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Medical Trade Shows - Tips to Promote Your Business
By Themedica on February 9, 2009 9:37 AM |
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Aside from offering you an opportunity to study the activities of rivals, examine recent trends and opportunities, medical trade shows can help you grow your business by letting you showcase latest products, and establish profitable relationships. medical-trade-show-medica.jpg

However, in order to make your participation at trade shows a success, you'd need to thoughtfully plan and execute your attendance so that every penny that you spend, turns out a good return. This becomes all the more important considering that the 2009 financial crisis is in no mood to spare any industry, including the medical industry from its onslaught.

The following tips will help you participate better at medical trade shows. The first set of tips will help you plan your participation, while the second is meant to help you seize opportunities by shining at the show.

Plan Your Participation

Identify your objectives/goals

Ask yourself, what all do you want from your participation at a trade event. Of course earning new clients is one goal, but participation at trade shows can yield a number of them. For instance, do you want to become more popular among a group of wholesalers, suppliers, etc? Or do you want to create a buzz just before your upcoming product launch?

Some common objectives that trade show participation helps accomplish include, generation of sales leads, educating your target audience, enhancing your image and visibility, establishing your presence in the medical marketplace, recruiting distributors or dealers, introducing new products and services, personally meeting your competitors, customers, and suppliers, etc.

Be a detective and research well
 
The last thing you'd want to experience is to end up spending your hard earned money on something that didn't quite get you the return on investment you desired. To prevent that you need to research and find out what the objectives of a particular trade show are, who're the target audience, etc and match them to your own objectives. For example if your objective is to establish relationships with wholesalers and suppliers, you may not choose to exhibit at a show that has end-users or consumers flocking it, no matter how popular or glitzy it is.

Plan your budget & space

Based on your requirements, locate the space where you'd want to have your booth set up. You'd need to consider it in the light of your objectives factors such as which floor, high traffic/low traffic area, lighting, other exhibits and exhibitors, etc. Once you're satisfied proceed with booking your space.

Plan the exhibits to display
 
You display exhibit mix will naturally follow from who all are going to be your target audience viz. retail customers, wholesale buyers, other businesses, etc. For example if you are dealing in dietary supplements then you could elegantly display an ensemble of herbal supplement, mineral supplement, nutraceuticals, whole food supplement, etc.


Get the word out early
 
Informing and alerting your contacts including clients, customers, suppliers, other guests in advance will make it easy for them to plan their visit, and ensure a greater participation. However, do take care to include all the details such as your floor, the boot no, etc, in your advertisements, on your website, mailers, etc, so that they've no trouble in reaching your booth.

Shine At The Show
 
  • Orderly and systematic display of products and services makes them look appealing, and they're easy to locate too. A messy and all cluttered-up set-up can put off your clientèle. Properly marked sections, tags, e.g. "Hospital Furniture," "Medical Instrument," "Dietary Supplement," etc. are quite helpful.
  • Make your products look like hot-cakes by placing “sold sign” on some items, leading to the impression that your products are an absolute hit.
  • The more people you attract to your trade show booth the better your chances of meeting your objectives. Simple events and activities such as interactive displays, quizzes, lucky draws, contests, computer games, scheduled demonstrations, etc can all serve the purpose well.
  • Stocking take-away promotional items can help all those who will take them to better remember your business. Keep small promotional stuff handy and well-stocked.
  • Essential and frequently sought information about products such as prices, shipping costs, minimum orders, etc. if made easily accessible to visitors can save a lot of their time and your's too, because they wouldn't have to wait for a rep to ask that information from. Further, it makes the process smooth and also enables you to service a large number of visitors with less staff. For example if you are selling refurbished hospital bed, hospital stools, hospital chair, etc, tagging them with essential information can work wonders.
  • Always be prepared to take orders and do business. This means to ensure that you've a good supply of order forms, credit card slips, pens, to conduct sales and track orders.
  • Schedule breaks for the staff in such a manner that at no point in time your booth should be vacant. Always have someone to engage clients and visitors in a conversation, and provide them the information they need.
  • Your approach towards the visitors to your booth should be friendly, and that your body language should reflect that. Try to find out what aspects of you business the visitors are interested in, and that if you can offer them specific solutions and information. The idea is to attract, yet not intimidate or overwhelm them.
  • Quickly following up the contacts you've made during the show allows you to build the relationship further, and get an edge over other businesses who haven't been as prompt in following up as you. Send emails, call up, or provide the information your contacts asked for as soon as possible.
Trade shows can be an excellent source of making new contacts and striking new business deals, both invaluable for your business growth. Consequently, if you've done your homework well and have participated at the right medical trade shows and in the right manner, the returns are pretty much assured.
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