The Natural Products Expo joins the list of events postponed due to Coronavirus fears (see: The growing list of world events canceled due to coronavirus). With Expo West postponed until a new date is announced mid-April, companies are reassessing how to market their brands without the largest natural products trade show. Here’s how you can grow your brand while you wait for Expo West to be rescheduled:
Plan to Attend or Exhibit at Additional Trade Shows: If you were planning on attending or exhibiting at Expo West, there are quite a few trade shows that will likely have cross-over appeal depending on your product. Please be aware that depending on the length of the Coronavirus outbreak, some of these events may be postponed as well. The Summer and Winter Fancy Food Shows are huge for the specialty food industry and food importers. The Sweets and Snacks Expo is essential for chocolate, confectionery and snack manufacturers. The PLMA Show enables brands to market their private label capabilities to retailers and distributors. The Food Shippers of America Conference is a great event for forming industry connections. And, most importantly, The Natural Products Expo East in its new Philadelphia location is expected to drive in new traffic, which should help alleviate some of the downsides of Expo West being postponed.
Leverage Owned and Earned Media Marketing: Even though Expo West is postponed, the buyers, retailers, distributors, service providers, business owners and employees are all still looking to make connections and learn more about brands. Owned and earned media, such as websites, social media pages and e-mail campaigns, are an effective way of getting the word out about your products. Much of the pressure to postpone Expo West came from social media, and those same social media sites, such as LinkedIn, can be used to start discussions and form connections within the industry. In the chaos of the show postponement, more discussions than ever have been generating on social media. Now is the perfect time to join those discussions.
Work with Industry Partners: Beyond trade shows and marketing, another way to gain the attention of retailers and distributors is by partnering with companies they are already working with. For example, partnering with a logistics provider that has connections to distributors and retailers such as KeHE, UNFI, and Wakefern gives you a competitive advantage in your distribution network. Anything you can do to help make the operations of your retailers and distributors run smoother, will make your business more attractive to them. Warehousing consolidation programs and transportation consolidation programs created in collaboration with retailers and distributors ensure that your distribution model links up efficiently with the distribution models of your most important customers.
Port Jersey Logistics has been deeply involved in the natural products industry for decades. We know what it takes to service the warehousing, transportation and distribution needs of natural and organic products. Whether it’s food, beverages, ingredients, health and beauty aids or consumer packaged goods, we have a solution for you. Contact Port Jersey Logistics today.
Read the official Expo West 2020 Postponement message: Expo West Community Message for March 3, 2020