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Health Fair Attractions - How to get your employees out to your health fair

Posted on Saturday November 12 2016

Each employer group has their own, unique organizational and employee culture.

Meaning, attaining a high (or above average) employee attendance rate at your company health/wellness fair can be easier to accomplish for some, while others have more difficulty.

This is what I can promise you:

Bringing out the right attraction to your health/wellness fair will increase employees turnout.

I have no doubts.

Now, don't confuse onsite screenings and flu shots at your health/wellness fair as an attraction.

The attraction is what you're going to use to increase the participation for those screenings, flu shots, etc..

You want your employees leaving the event and going to tell their peers they need to go and see (or try) attraction "X" at the health/wellness fair.

Make sense? Good.

Now let's dive a little deeper, and I'll even show you a couple examples of some attractions that really made a difference.

Picking the Right Attraction

Getting just any attraction you can find is not the ideal way to go. You want an attraction that you honestly believe will spike the interest of your employees.

Seems simple, but quite a few folks miss the mark here.

The first question you should ask yourself:  "Does my employee population mainly consist of males, females, or a combo of both?"

Second question: "What type of industry is our company a part of (blue collar or white collar)?"

And the third question (you need to really to be in touch with your employees for this one): "What do a majority of my employees like to do outside of work?" Do they run, bike, shop, hunt, fish, etc.? Are they competitive? Do they like sports?

These questions are a great starting point to picking the right attraction for your health/wellness fair.


Unique Health/Wellness Fair Vendors = Attractions

Here are a brief story and example of a company who applied those three questions when selecting attractions for their employee health/wellness fair:

Back in 2014, HFC produced and attended a health/wellness fair for YadTel Telecom in Yadkinville, NC.

Yadkinville, NC is in the foothills of the Appalachian Mountains (just a little background here).

YadTel’s employee base is roughly 90% male, and a majority of them are out on the roads servicing phone lines and doing similar things.

So, how do you get males - we can be very stubborn believe it or not :) - who are on the road a majority of their day to show up to a health/wellness fair?

You bring out attractions...

The HR manager who planned the event secured several attractions related to hunting and fishing.

She knew the hobbies of her employees and what would spike their interest.

The unique health/wellness fair vendors secured included:

  • Yadkinville’s Fish & Game (pictured with me above)
  • A Gun Safety Vendor
  • A Camping Vendor (who brought out an actual camper to show employees)
  • A DJ

Yes, she went the extra mile.

But guess what?

The employee turnout was through the ROOF!!!

The event was fun, interactive and the multiple attractions made the health/wellness fair feel more like a carnival.

When speaking with YadTel, they confirmed that without these attractions, it would have been difficult to get their employees excited about a heath/wellness fair and that turnout would have been 60-70% lower.

And trust me.

I had been at this health/wellness fair the year before (with no unique health/wellness fair vendors), and hardly anyone showed up.

The next year was an 180-degree turn in the health fair experience - and that made the difference.

Most of YadTel's employees did not even work in the office and still made time (and wanted) to attend.

So, no excuses HR and benefits pros - if they can do it, you can too :)

The #1 "Attraction" (in my opinion)

The Limited's Corporate Office in Columbus, OH host an annual health/wellness fair.

This past year, they brought out an "attraction" that is my personal favorite:

The local animal shelter...

Employees were allowed to play with puppies, kittens, cats, and dogs that were all up for adoption.

How awesome is that?!

Bringing out the local animal shelter is an excellent idea for many reasons...

One: Most all cities have a local animal shelter (you're probably thinking of yours right now), so this idea is most likely something you can seriously consider.

Two: Shelters and adoption organizations (South of The Bully is one I work with in NC) look to have adoption events monthly (if not weekly), so it's going to be free to your company to have them at your health/wellness fair.

Three: This most likely is going to appeal to your employees (no matter how different they might be) and increase your employee turnout. How the heck could it not?!

Four: You increase the chances of saving a dog or cat's life..duh :)

I'm sure I could keep going, but you get my point.

So, keep this "attraction" in mind when planning your 2017 health/wellness fair.

Possible Attractions For Your Health/Wellness Fair

Now, you might want to go a different route than the two examples above when selecting attractions (and unique health/wellness fair vendors) for your heath/wellness fair, but now you know the three main questions you want to ask before making that decision.

So, keep those questions in mind when deciding if the attractions (unique health/wellness fair vendors) listed below might be an excellent add for your health/wellness fair...

  • Magician: He or she can captivate your employees and get them out to your health/wellness fair.
  • Music (DJ or musician)
  • Obstacle course: This can be a blast for your employees if you have the room (best for outdoors)
  • Cooking Demo: You can't ever go wrong with a vendor that not only entertains but provides food.
  • Food Trucks: An excellent way to bring your employees out to an outdoor health/wellness fair

I hope this post has shed some light on the thought of attractions at your health/wellness fair and why it's an excellent idea to have one.

Please feel free to share this posts or comment, as I'm always hoping to hear new ideas and stories of attractions that made (or can make) a difference in the employee turnout at your health/wellness fair.

Thanks for reading!


More About Health Fair Connections (HFC):

Simply put, we offer the only nationwide health fair planning tool that helps HR and benefits professionals automate 95% of the health fair planning process. The coolest part: it's like online shopping for health fair vendors. This tool is completely free to use, and you can get started at any time by clicking here.

  • Tim Sackett's (President of HRU Tech) post about HFC: Click Here
  • 19 Competitive Advantages for those who use HFC’s Platform to Plan & Organize Health Fairs: Click Here
  • HFC made William Tincup's Recruiting Daily List of 100 HR Technologies worth watching: Click Here

  • HFC's Competitive Matrix:

Link to large PDF of Competitive Matrix.

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Kyle Pickett


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