Redefining & Redesigning

Record-Breaking Attendance at IMSH 2019


Society for Simulation in Healthcare (SSH)


The International Meeting on Healthcare in Simulation (IMSH) is hosted by the Society for Simulation in Healthcare (SSH). SSH is a 4,000-member organization that seeks to improve performance and reduce errors in patient care using simulation. International membership includes physicians, nurses, researchers, educators, technicians and others.

IMSH 2019 took place January 26- January 30, in San Antonio, TX. The conference theme: “Redefining and Redesigning Healthcare, Powered by Simulation,” was developed by the IMSH planning committee, and set the tone for the entire meeting.

This is the fourth year that Gavilan & Associates, LLC partnered with SSH to develop and implement a comprehensive attendance-building strategy.


The 12-month campaign included:

  • A “Thanks for Attending” postcard to IMSH 2018 attendees, with the 2019 date
  • A conference look based on the theme
  • Email series
  • Social media posts and ads
  • Promotional video; video testimonials; and videos from speakers promoting their sessions
  • A dedicated microsite,
  • A Marketing Toolkit for the planning committee and exhibitors
  • Ads in SSH’s publications and on their website
  • “Who Attends” infographics
  • Downloadable Justification Toolkit for attendees
  • Media outreach in the San Antonio
  • A messaging strategy


  • A retargeting ad campaign tested two versions of creative to see which one generated the most registrations
  • Registered attendees were offered the opportunity to bring their C-suite executive for free
  • Social media graphics were offered in Chinese and Spanish


Attendance exceeded expectations with a 24% increase over 2018 and a13% increase over 2017, which was historically their highest attended conference. Of those, 38 C- suite executives used the “attend for free” offer.

  • The retargeting ad campaign generated 38 registrations at a CPU of $2.26
  • A Facebook boost reached 1,391 individuals and generated 294 Post Engagements for a $100 investment
  • Exhibitor attendance increased 8.24% increase from 2018
  • Media coverage (television, print and online) earned a total reach of 2,709,503

IMSH 2019 Microsite:

  • 12.6% increase in microsite users from 2018 to 2019
  • 11.88% increase in the number of countries represented between 2018 and 2019
  • Page Views: 186,276

Social media:

  • #IMSH2019 generated 17.110 million impressions; 5,194 Tweets; 1,070 participants
  • 137% growth in Facebook post reach from December 2018 to January 2019
  • 224% increase in Facebook Likes from December 2018 to January 2019

Followers gained:

  • 170 new on Facebook
  • 91 new on Instagram
  • 106 new on LinkedIn