We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again:
Even if you’re not attending VMX 2019 — and even if all your customers aren’t going — it’s still worth discussing the event with practices in your area.
Held on January 19-23, 2019, VMS is the biggest veterinary conference of the year and also the first major conference for 2019, which means just about every product manufacturer is showcasing its best and latest innovations for animal health.
It’s important to be aware of what’s being rolled out at VMX 2019, so you can be proactive with your clients who are going… and even with those who aren’t.
The reason is, as manufacturers launch big promotion campaigns to introduce new and top-selling products at the VMX, the entire veterinary community will also hear about those launches through trade journals, industry websites, email marketing, online ads, direct mail, and perhaps even through distribution company websites and sell sheets.
Just think, there are more than 700 different exhibitors at the VMX 2019, with many of them promoting new products or show specials. Plus, several of the exhibitors are first-time exhibitors bringing exciting new technologies to market.
You don’t want to be caught off guard if a clinic asks you, “What’s this new product I’ve heard about?” You want to be walking in the door, ready to talk about what’s new.
And it’s not just about products.
Each year, the NAVC and now the VMX has always been the first-of-the-year kick-off moment for new CE programs and industry initiatives that affect all practices across the U.S., Canada, and beyond. For instance, consider these past initiatives and shifts that have affected practices everywhere — all making a big splash at the NAVC/VMX:
- Fear Freesm veterinary practice
- Cat Friendly Practices®
- Zoonoses and infectious diseases
- Holistic care
- Better wound management
- Battling online pharmacies that bypass vet visits
- Using smart technology to track pets and their vitals
- Human-Animal Bond certification
- Veterinary forensics
- Veterinary Nurses initiative
Many of these initiatives have impacted the way you sell products and services to the clinics in your territory, right?
This year at the VMX, the NAVC is launching two new certifications:
1.) Certified Pet Nutrition Coach and
2.) Veterinary Business Leader
Let’s consider what this alone can mean for your sales. If you’re on a mission to help practices sell more prescription diets, dental treats, and other food products … you’ll want to know about the Certified Pet Nutrition Coach program and talk to your customers about it.
Certified Pet Nutrition Coaches may need more input from you on food and treat options. And, it’s very likely that they’ll order those products from you.
And, if you ask your customers if they’re aware of the Veterinary Business Leader certification and they say yes, you may be able to help them upgrade to a new practice management system or discuss tools and initiatives from different manufacturers, supporting business growth. (Such as, adding a new oral-care suite or laser therapy treatments… or recommending wellness care visits during boarding sessions. Imagine the possibilities!
How can you be informed about everything happening at VMX 2019 if you’re not actually attending?
- Begin by following the major manufacturers and seeing what they’ll promote at VMX. For starters, you can view the VMX 2019 Preliminary Program Guide and see who’s advertising — and what they’re advertising — along with the CE schedule and main topics.
- You can also check out the entire VMX 2019 Exhibitor List and click on the manufacturer websites to see if they’re promoting new products as it gets closer to the VMX dates.
- You may also see email and social media alerts from different manufacturers, letting you know about new product launches or show specials.
Of course, you’ll also want to be proactive with your customers.
Find out which of your practices are sending someone to VMX, and map out a plan with them. We already know that most practices prefer to order products from one source (YOU), so talk about the VMX show specials, new products, and possible upgrades the practice may be considering… so you can help them order those products through you, during or after the show.
For practices that aren’t sending anyone to VMX, you can still bring up new products being launched at the show… to see if the practices are aware and may have interest.
Whether or not you attend VMX 2019, it’s still a major door-opener for you.