We all know that APP is the biggest and most influential conference in pharmacy’s calendar year, but knowing how your brand can best leverage this is another story.
It’s that time of year again: APP. Everybody is there.
You‘ve pulled together the stand, your satchel insert is pretty effective and your barista makes a good coffee.
You even have a dance crew, Instagram photographer or promotional team tearing it up in the trade-floor aisles drawing the crowds to your stand.
You’re making your brand sizzle. But is this enough to make that lasting impression on your customers?
The first thing to ask yourself is: Why are your customers coming and what do they want to get out of the event?
Is it the Federal Health Minister’s address? What impact the codeine rescheduling will have on their business? What your product is going to do for their patients/business?
The answer is yes – to all of the above, and more.
With 2017 shaping up to be APP’s biggest year ever, consider these five tips to make sure you’re maximizing your brand message.
What’s your strategy to engage with existing and potential customers? What are you offering once they arrive at your stand? Is the experience mutually beneficial?
Being professional and adding value at a trade stand is just as important – and needs just as much planning and training – as a sales call.
For new customers, what will they take away from their first interaction with your company? Will they remember you only for a free sample or will they take away a valuable insight or piece of information for their business?
Partnering with another company or organization means increasing your reach and making a more lasting impression. According to memory experts, memories are more easily retrieved through an association and repetition process.
You can achieve both of these when you partner with another brand at a conference that is either a product that compliments yours, an NGO whose cause aligns with your messages or even a news publication that can amplify your message through sponsored content. Many hands make light work.
A common mistake is trying to achieve too much – juggling multiple initiatives or messages at an event which end up making a company look disorganised and sometimes a bit cheap (ouch!).
Think back to point #1. If you look professional and promote simple but cohesive messages, customers perceive this is how you do business.
Be consistent. Stand for something. Own it. But make sure it’s well thought out and essentially what the customer is after or couldn’t do without. And for the most part, that is simplicity.
The most expensive conference investments are those that don’t work towards a business goal. Instead, they often simply give delegates something free or ‘cool’ at the event.
A great gift or freebie at a trade stand will attract customers, but it won’t instill brand loyalty.
How do you encourage them to continue through the process of becoming a loyalist? Don’t be afraid to ask for the business right then and there, but if they are a careful soul they will want to weigh up their options and you pressuring them won’t help.
So what channels are you using to continue to give these customers the information to drive them to adopt your product?
Do you have a newsletter? A Facebook following would be better, but make sure you have a decent social marketing plan. Can you leverage a news publication to distribute on your behalf through sponsored content?
Sponsored content offers you a chance to be a part of the news. Different news sites offer this as a way to integrate your key messages into their news feeds by producing an article with your brand objectives in mind.
There are different ways that you can do this, but good content always has the readers’ needs as the primary focus. Content that is promotional or lacks purpose for the reader will ultimately fail; they will lose interest and move onto something more interesting.
Pharmacy News is offering a range of different sponsored opportunities for APP 2017 – from articles and videos to social media opportunities to get your brand message in front of your customers. Check out the relaunched Pharmacy News APP website here.
Are you interested in understanding more around sponsored content or these APP opportunities? Contact Lucie Crotwell on 0410 741 796 or click here to email.