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7 Ways To Promote Your Health Business At A Trade Show

Ashley Andrews

If you have a health-related business, one of the best ways to grow your business—even grow it at an exponential rate—is to exhibit at a trade show. A trade show for the health industry is an opportunity to demonstrate your products and services. Products may include packaged organic foods or food supplements. Services may include an alternative health practice like acupuncture or massage therapy.

While attending a trade show has the potential to jumpstart your business or take it to the next level, you have to be strategic in how you set up your booth and present your business. It’s not enough to just show up. You have to have a game plan.

Here, then, are 7 ideas on how to make your booth at a health show a success:

1. Set up appointments before you even go to the trade show. Go through your list of contacts. Reach out to vendors, allies, and customers, announcing your presence at the trade show. Use social media, as well as email marketing to get the word out. If possible, offer something to people who come out to support you. If you are selling a product, it might be a free product or a discount on a line of products. If you own a health facility, it could be a free membership to your business for a week or a month. If you have a health practice, it could be a complementary treatment. In other words, promote with creativity.

2. Don't be boring. Although you are not selling anything, you can’t afford to be sloppy. Talk to attendees, don’t sit around your table sipping on drinks and snacking, and be eager to answer any questions. Avoid wasting the opportunity by doing things that turn people off like hard-selling or qualifying future prospects. Treat everyone with courtesy and respect. You never know who you are talking to. The sharply dressed person may only be a company rep while the man who looks like the janitor on his day off might be the CEO gone incognito.

3. Demonstrate what you do. If you are a company that sells healthy green smoothies, then offer to blend drinks all day. Don’t just hand out little packages. If you sell massage products, then have a massage table for sale as an exhibit. If you are a nutritionist, offer quick 10 minute consultations. In other words, don’t just talk, hand out samples, or load people up with brochures. Find some way of demonstrating your business. Make it tangible and something visitors will remember.

4. Find an opportunity to speak. Often this is the best way to get your brand or business known. While it’s nice to be able to chat with visitors, try the strategy of pre-eminence. Show people that you are an authority in your field. When speaking, cover topics that give value. If, for example, you’re a nutritionist, don’t talk about the prestigious school you attended and the exemplary business you’ve set up. Also, don’t go on a rant about the perils of the Standard American diet. Instead, offer practical strategies on eating well that people can take away with them—something along the lines of “5 Ways to Jumpstart Your Morning without Coffee.”

5.Seek ways to continue the conversation. After you’ve met people, get their contact address, especially their digital information. Then follow up with a telephone call and an email. During this contact, simply remind them about where you met them. Then surprise them by not pitching them to buy something, but instead send them something that will help them. If, for example, you’re a massage therapist, send them an ebook on how to reduce inflammation through stretching and natural remedies. The only selling you should do is mention your website link in the book or put a few relevant links in your author section.

6. Stop thinking of other companies as competitors. Instead think of them as possible partners. Focus on cooperation, not competition, form alliances rather than stake out territory. Practically, this means visiting other booths that offer the same or similar products or services, introducing yourself, and just being friendly. If possible make an offer to refer people if your “competitor” offers a specialty. Think win-win. Friendliness and generosity will go a long way in creating unexpected business opportunities.

7. Notice what is working and what is not working. If this is your first exhibit, then learn from those who are seasoned at presenting at trade shows. If you have done trade shows before, then learn from those who are doing things better than you. Also, notice what is not working. For instance, if someone is giving a presentation and you notice that the audience begins to lose interest, try and figure out what he or she did to turn them off.

It’s A Learning Process

Trade shows can be one of the most powerful lead generating mechanisms available to you. But like anything worth mastering, it may take time to figure out how to maximize your opportunity. So, be easy on yourself if things don’t work out as well as you had hoped. Learn from any mistakes you made and try to do it better the next time. Alternatively, your business may take off so fast that it will make your head spin.

___________________________

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