Growing the NEXT generation of natural businesses
The NEXT Product-to-Shelf Workshop is the place to come for the essential solutions that your young and growing brand needs to succeed. Our one-of-a kind conference program is packed with the premium speakers, experienced insights, and wise solutions targeted to natural products entrepreneurs - solutions you can’t get anywhere else. This year, our brand new, full-day program offers four strategic tracks packed with the information your band needs to succeed.
Product-To-Shelf Luncheon Keynote: Bill Whyte, CEO, Badger Balm
Bill Whyte, CEO & Head Badger of the W.S. Badger Company, is an herbalist, storyteller and self-taught entrepreneur. He traces his success in business back to his first start-up - the weaving and selling of cloth pot holders back when he was about 9 years old.
Bill became a carpenter in the 80's and was the owner of White Light Builders - a company focused on healthy, creative, non-toxic design and construction. When Bill's fingers became severely cracked one bitterly cold New Hampshire winter, he developed the formula for Badger Balm in his kitchen. His fingers were healed fast and a business was born. Now in its 18th year, The W.S. Badger Company is known for its safe effective sunscreens and for a wide variety of simple, healthful balms sold worldwide. Badger occupies a fine new building designed by Bill, where a committed crew of hardworking Badgers formulate, fill, market and sell more than 80 Badger healthy bodycare products. Badger serves a daily free organic lunch for all employees. They have a babies-at-work program, a childcare center and an ecology center to promote healthy, earthy living. Badger donates 10% of pre-tax profits to charitable organizations with a special focus on the health, education and welfare of children.
Wednesday, September 25th 12:00 – 1:30 pm
Fundraising – The NEXT Natural Products Pitch-Slam will provide 4 lucky companies with the opportunity to compete for valuable prizes, networking introductions, and expert advice. We’ll also dig into crowd-funding, the hot topic of Slow Money, and share the winner of the pitch slam at an awards reception and networking event.
Manufacturing – Getting your product made and on the shelf means navigating a maze of suppliers, producers, distributors and pricing issues. This track will feature insights, advice, tools and strategy from the winning brands, founders, and industry consultants you’d love to have on your team. Topics include choosing the perfect manufacturing partner, finding the right ingredients and maximizing value in your supply chain and operations.
Branding and Packaging – Building a brand that resonates in the marketplace is more complex than just a logo and tagline. Learn from the best natural products branding and packaging companies in the country to glean the actionable steps you can take to create and grow a winning brand. You can even take part in a hands-on packaging review to see how your packaging measures up!
Sales and Marketing – You’ve got a great product, now you need to sell it? What’s the best sales and marketing strategy for you and your brand? We’ll help you navigate the complex maze of direct sales to retailers, reps, brokers and distributors and provide insight into how you can make the most of your marketing dollars through powerful social media and cause marketing.
8:30 - 9:00 am - Networking Breakfast
Half day morning option: 9:00 – 1:30 pm $125
Half day afternoon option 12:00 – 5:00 pm$125
Full day: 8:30 am – 5:00 pm $225
5:00 – 7:00 pm NEXT Pitch-Slam Awards Reception
Networking Breakfast, Tasty Luncheon with Keynote Address, and Pitch Slam Awards Reception included for ALL options.
NEXT Natural Products Accelerator Pitch-Slam
Fundraising Track: 9:00am
If you’re looking for funding for your natural products business, this is the place you must be. We’ve gathered the industry’s top venture funds and investors to check you out! The winner will receive a prize package of goods and services valued at more than $15,000, including a free booth at Expo East in 2014! Three lucky companies will have 10-minutes to pitch their businesses, and receive priceless feedback. Later that day, you’ll attend an awards reception and networking party where the lucky winner will be announced! This is where the magic happens. Don’t miss it!
To register, email firstname.lastname@example.org by July 30, 2013 for your pitch-slam application.
Brokers and Reps and Distributors, Oh My!
Sales and Marketing Track, 2:00pm
What’s the best way to get your product on the shelf? Learning to navigate the maze of distribution channels can be daunting! We’ll cover the best ways to work with reps, brokers, and distributors, the most strategic ways to spend your marketing dollars, and foolproof ways to maximize these relationships and increase your sales. Nitty-gritty advice that will take you from pale sales to sittin’ pretty!
Your Packaging Speaks! Hand’s on Packaging Review
Branding and Packaging Track, 4:00pm
What’s it saying? Your packaging is one of the most important aspects of your marketing strategy. Your eye-catching package design will identify your product and reassure consumers that their purchase is the right one. Find out how your brand measures up, and learn how to communicate the most essential components of your brand through your choice of packaging. 5 lucky attendees will be selected to have their packaging reviewed by natural products branding and packaging experts. Bring a sample of your packaging/product to this session for your chance to be selected.