Are healthcare events really worth the effort?

18 Aug 23

Are you thinking of attending a medical device event this year but are unsure if it’s worth the investment of time and money? Maybe you’re curious about the impact that events have on your overall marketing strategy.

Healthcare events and conferences populate the diaries of many medical device marketers, but are they really worth the hassle?

Collectively, our team has attended countless healthcare events over the years, and we’ve helped clients to maximise the impact of their attendance, so we’re here to share what we’ve seen.

Let’s look at the pros and cons of event attendance, so that you can make an informed decision for yourself.

What are the benefits of attending healthcare events?

There’s a huge number of events throughout the year, from major international events such as The MedTech Innovation Expo, to smaller local conferences such as the ALSGBI (Associations of laparoscopic surgeons of Great Britain and Ireland) amongst others.

There are three significant benefits of event attendance, which are worth considering when planning your events diary.

  • Brand awareness and networking

    Healthcare events are not only fantastic platforms for raising brand awareness, but they’re also one of the best ways to build your network.

    When you’re at these events, you’re surrounded by professionals in your speciality, offering an opportunity for face-to-face interactions which leaves a more lasting impression than digital communication. This will mean your brand is more likely to be recalled when your customer encounters the problem your technology solves.

    This kind of networking can’t be undervalued. By participating, you’re not just showcasing your technology, but also fostering valuable relationships.

  • Lead generation

    Attending industry events isn’t just about networking and brand promotion; it’s a goldmine for lead generation. Every conversation has the potential to open doors to business opportunities. By showcasing your products or services and engaging in insightful discussions, you’re subtly planting seeds of interest.

  • Education

    Healthcare events can provide a great window into what’s trending in your field. Being there, you get a front-row seat to what others are doing, the innovations they’re introducing, and the strategies they’re employing.

    It’s like a live showcase of the industry’s best practices and emerging trends. By observing and learning from others, you can draw inspiration and even pinpoint areas where you might have an edge.

    It’s not about copying, but about understanding the market pulse, then tailoring your strategies accordingly. In essence, these events offer invaluable insights that can fuel your business growth.

Looking for professionals to manage your events presence?

What are the drawbacks of attending healthcare events?

Whilst there are undoubtedly benefits to attending healthcare events and opportunities that aren’t available elsewhere, there are also downsides.

You need to consider the potential pitfalls of events before you can decide whether your company would truly benefit from attendance.

  • Expenses

    Navigating the medical device events circuit can be an exciting experience, but it comes with its price tag. From booth setups, promotional materials, and travel accommodations to the registration fees themselves, costs can stack up pretty quickly.

    If you’re not fully committed – be it in preparation, engagement, or follow-up—the return on investment may be slim. In this arena, half-hearted participation isn’t just a missed opportunity; it can be a genuine drain on resources.

    You may end up spending a huge chunk of your marketing budget for very little reward. This budget could have potentially been spent on other, more lucrative marketing platforms.

  • Unfocused sales team

    Commitment when it comes to events goes further than the marketing team, it also extends to the sales team, the feet on the ground at your event.

    Your marketing team could spend a huge amount of time doing everything right to prepare for the event, only to be handicapped by an unfocussed sales team who don’t engage leads effectively or following up in a timeline manner.

    Choosing the right team and ensuring they have the correct tools to hand so they can engage and follow up with leads effectively can make a big impact to the success of your events.

  • Potential for issues

    Events can be stressful as there are so many things that could potentially go wrong, and in order for them to be truly beneficial, they need to be done exactly right.

    For instance, you may run into issues with the delivery of your materials. Or perhaps your stand is placed in the corner of the event hall where there is little footfall.

    Although you can take steps to avoid these mishaps, if they do occur, they can be hugely detrimental to the success of your attendance, as well as stressful for your team.

    To avoid this, starting you’re planning early is always a good thing, not to mention checking and double-checking each decision you make. If something is going to go wrong, you’re more likely to catch it and avoid future troubles.

Are healthcare events worth it for you?

We’ve covered what makes them great as well as what makes them not so great and it seems that for every pro, there is also a con.

Yes, they can be great for building brand awareness and driving leads, but could you get the same results from a cheaper channel?

Unfortunately, there is no definite answer for whether healthcare events are worth it, rather you need to weigh up the pros and cons for your company, based on your team and resources.

For some, they’re a game-changer, for others, their budget is best spent elsewhere. Information is the best way to help you succeed, to find out more have a look at our other articles on events to make sure that you’re getting the most out of your experience if you choose to attend.

Do you have an exhibition coming up on the horizon and need help getting started? Check out our healthcare exhibition presence page on our website and find out how we can help you.

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Are you thinking of attending a medical device event this year for the first time but are unsure if it’s worth the investment of time and money? Maybe you’re curious about the impact that events have on your overall marketing strategy.

Are you thinking of attending a medical device event this year for the first time but are unsure if it’s worth the investment of time and money? Maybe you’re curious about the impact that events have on your overall marketing strategy.

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