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The American Academy of Ophthalmology, the largest national membership association of Eye doctors in the United States, hosts an annual trade show hosted at different venues located around the United States. The event brings together ophthalmologists, medical and osteopathic doctors, administrators, and medical equipment suppliers in order to advance the lifelong learning and professional interests of ophthalmologists, making it possible for their patients to obtain the best possible eye care year after year.

More than 90 percent of practicing U.S. eye professionals who provide medical, surgical and optical care are currently Academy members, and the Academy has more than 7,000 international members, many of whom attend the event, making it one of the largest medical trade shows in the United States. For these visitors, the event means product exhibits covering innovative new technology, lectures from respected leaders in the field, educational courses, and networking opportunities
For exhibitors, however, it can mean a competitive environment full of highly intelligent and opinioned prospects. Thus it is important that presenters enter into the AAO trade show prepared with accurate expectations and clear goals using the steps below:
1. Identify goals
Trade show goals may include lead generation, completed sales, or simply increased brand awareness. Once a goal has been chosen a brand’s entire trade show strategy should be built to support the successful meeting of that goal.
2. Target the Right Visitors
It’s important to lay a foundation with the right prospects before the show even starts. Consider investing in a direct marketing strategy to reach certain high priority prospects before beforehand. An email campaign and social media updates on the event’s pages may be worthwhile ways to start.
3. Have a Follow-Up Plan
Develop a streamlined plan for collecting customer information at the show for future follow-up. For instance, you could offer an incentive such as a topical white paper or discount opportunity in exchange for email addresses and/or give booth staff iPADS with a streamlined form to use to enter information following conversations. You should also have a plan in writing for the post show in which these contacts are systematically contacted by your reps in order to maximize ROI.
4. Make a Statement
Invest in an AAO trade show display or booth design that conveys the message of your product or service successfully and memorably. ELDS, Inc. has experienced both designers ready to help you with any conceptual work and our in-house fabrication and printing services can deliver high quality results. For more information on renting or purchasing booths for medical trade shows, please contact ELDS, Inc. today at (626) 969-3399.