AAD Conference Comes Back Strong After COVID-Related Hiatus

After a two-year hiatus due to COVID-19, physicians and suppliers convened in Boston this past weekend for the American Academy of Dermatology Association’s 80th annual convention. According to the AAD, some 15,000 attendees were expected to attend — just shy of pre-pandemic levels. 

The Exhibit Hall was filled to bursting with the latest products and services from over 300 exhibitors, including those offering aesthetic products/devices, pharmaceuticals, publications, and more

Physician sessions focused on new devices, therapies, and the impact of climate change on skin health, in addition to topics related to the business aspects of practices. Hair health, loss, and restoration were key topics at this year’s conference, with a presence in both physician sessions and the Exhibit Hall. The Nutrafol and Virtue booths were surrounded by attendees eager for free samples and information. 

 

Our mission was to speak with our subscribers about their business, what they were seeing on their radar, and new ideas. Here are some of the most salient highlights we gathered: 

Eye on Education 

Be it current dispensing physicians or new medical residents/dermatology fellows, nothing can replace the important pillar of education. This became even more important during the pandemic lockdown periods, when many brands pivoted to virtual education. Today, virtual education continues as part of a hybrid offering paired with in-person learning. Brands such as PCA Skin expressed pride in the services they’ve been offering to physicians. Other marketers spoke of their efforts to educate the dispensing doctors of tomorrow, along with the specific programs they had in the pipeline to accomplish this goal. 

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Procedure Pairing 

Nearly all marketers were focused on how to make their products more relevant in terms of pairing them with aesthetic procedures such as lasers, micro needling, fillers, and neuromodulators. There was strong interest expressed in our idea for a new Kline report whereby physicians would be surveyed about how they incorporate this concept into their aesthetic practice and where they believe the largest opportunities lie. Stay tuned for our new report! 

With regard to Galderma’s January 2022 acquisition of ALASTIN Skincare, the opportunities have multiplied exponentially, as Galderma has a vast international foothold with its Dysport product, which can now be co-promoted with ALASTIN products that are specifically designed for injectables.

 

Growing Headcount 

Throughout our many conversations, there was emphasis on internal headcount growth due to the strong market demand and needs. Most companies have incorporated a digital/social media team or have expanded headcount on the team. Field sales-rep headcounts have also grown significantly for many brands, while other brands are focused on international expansion and building their teams on the domestic and international fronts. 

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