Attending NACDS Total Store Expo 2021? Here’s How to Maximize Your Experience


NACDS highlights tools designed to help you build relationships, discover the next industry trends, and get what you want out of this year’s Total Store Expo.

The 2021 National Association of Chain Drug Stores (NACDS) Total Store Expo (TSE) kicks off on August 23 and continues through August 25. In a meeting this week, NACDS highlighted the ways that registrants can leverage TSE tools to get the most out of their virtual trade show experience.1

The virtual program is interactive and tailored to each participant, offering both retailer and exhibitor resources, as well as a marketplace exchange. The platform is structured to foster communication and build relationships between retailers and manufacturers.

“Today, more than ever, creating and building relationships with your trading partners is crucial,” said Jim Whitman, senior vice president, member programs and services, NACDS. Whitman cited recent moves by industry leaders - Walgreens, Rite Aid, and Walmart among them - toward enhanced patient experiences, like credit cards and loyalty programs.

The Participants page is a good place to start your exploration of the NACDS virtual site, according to Steve Perlowski, vice president, industry affairs, NACDS. Updated every 4 hours, the page features a comprehensive list of everyone who has registered for the meeting, offering access to a database of attendee contact information, including emails and phone numbers. Registrants can download the registration list, but don’t worry – “this version of our registration list does not contain email or phone numbers to ensure it cannot be used for mass emails or auto calls,” Perlowski said. The resource is helpful in developing a contact list and scheduling meetings.

Retailers and exhibitors can be found alphabetically, by type of store, by product category, and by first time attendees, so registrants can easily find products and organize meetings with prospective partners.

The NACDS Market Exchange helps retailers find the latest products, discover new trends, and connect with suppliers. Products can be searched by new, by category, or by most popular to tailor the platform to the specific needs of diverse retailers. Teams and colleagues are able to collaborate and share information through the planner tool, as well as invite and schedule meetings with potential buyers.

Retailer and exhibitor resource pages are functional dashboards with valuable information and insight. The exhibitor resource page offers meeting tips and advice, including pre-meeting preparation and meeting execution. NACDS even created email signatures and graphics to help retailers and exhibitors promote their presence on social media and across their networks.

Ultimately, it’s up to the attendee to take advantage of these resources and decide how they’ll be empowered by NACDS TSE. “No company uses a meeting like Total Store Expo the same,” said Whitman.

Check back to Drug Topics® next week for conference coverage of 2021 NACDS TSE, including exclusive expert interviews with speakers on leading industry trends.


  1. Whitman J, Perlowski S, et al. Maximize Your Total Store Expo Experience. NACDS. August 17, 2021. Accessed August 17, 2021. 
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