My First Dental Conference

March 20, 2015

A couple of weeks ago, I attended Chicago Midwinter Dental Conference, the largest annual dental conference in the Midwest. It was the 150th such conference, and it was a supersized celebration, hosted at the McCormick Place. Hundreds, if not thousands, of businesses rented tables in the exhibition hall, trying to sell their products and services. Tens of thousands of health care professionals attended, listening to lectures, browsing the exhibition hall, and collecting everything from pillows to scalpel blade samples.

One point struck me the most, though. I was amazed by how many businesses rely specifically on trade shows and conferences to reach their potential audience and sell their products. Clinicians browse dozens of rows of vendors, looking for supplies they need or new products that interst them. Vendors of all sorts staff their booths, hoping for the right foot traffic at the right time. And, of course, most participants find it a little overwhelming at first.

The experience really drove home the importance of having an online platform that allows this kind of marketplace and communication. All vendors ought to be able to reach their potential customers and sell their supplies. All clinicians ought to be able to find the products they’re looking for and communicate to one another the value of these items. Communication should be year-round; transparency is a necessity.

Scott and I hope to fill this need with Supply Clinic. We’re rapidly signing more vendors and adding more products to be able to give clinicians a more complete view of the marketplace. And although it’s still early, we’re adding more beta testers every day, and emphasizing the importance of quality feedback, especially in the form of ratings and reviews. (If you’d like to be an early part of our community, please don’t hesitate to reach out to us or request to be a beta tester.) Because we shouldn’t need to wait for trade shows to do business, or give each other vital feedback and advice.

Although I will readily admit that we don’t give out pillows. For that, you’ll need to wait for a conference.


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