AGENDA

The Workshop will begin at 11:30 am Eastern on both days, and adjourn at 5:30 pm Eastern, with Retreat activities available both evenings.  Please select your activities during registration.

Thursday, November 12

TIME (EST) SESSION SPEAKER  SESSION DESCRIPTION
11:30 am Welcome Remarks George White, GCA President and Nora Weiser, GCA Executive Director  
11:45 am Impact of COVID on the Greeting Card Category

Ryan Myers
VP, Insights
Hallmark

This session will take a deep dive on how COVID has disrupted global commerce and specifically how it has impacted the greeting card industry. Because of COVID, consumer behaviors have shifted— people are leaving their homes less and have reduced physical shopping trips, accelerating the growth of eCommerce by several years, Greeting Card sales have been disproportionately negatively affected in stores due to reduced trips, altered celebrations and shopping discomfort. Yet consumer sentiment towards the card category has materially improved during COVID, and getting cards in people’s hands can increase consumption
12:30 pm Pivoting in the New Retail Climate and Current Trends

Kyle Williams
Director of Merchandising,
Paper Source

We are all being pushed outside of our comfort zone. Through the short time we have together, I hope to enlighten, inspire, and challenge us all to think outside box by discussing the current trends and changing environment in our industry.
1:00 pm

Stationery Storytelling in the Age of COVID-19

 

Sarah Schwartz, Editor, The Paper Nerd, The Paper Fold, Stationery Trends

So much has changed, so fast. However one thing remains abundantly clear: We still want to connect. Join Sarah Schwartz, editor of Stationery Trends, The Paper Nerd and The Paper Fold, as she shares a few of the trend stories running through customers’ minds right now. Whatever your current selling stage, she’ll show you how to dazzle, inspire and engage your audience.
1:30 pm The Convergence of Diversity, Inclusion, and Marketing

 

Regina Patterson
Owner and Principal
RRP Marketing

Read Regina's Bio

Speaker. Writer. Activist. Marketing is Regina Patterson’s superpower. She fights for the underdog, has a passion for marketing, and is really good at what she do…because she is a nerd. A cool nerd; yet, still a nerd. And she brings all of this passion, zeal, and rockstar energy to RRP Marketing, a full-service marketing agency intent on helping small and mid-sized businesses and non-profits create sustainable businesses through smart marketing decisions. Regina’s passion for marketing strategy and communications can be seen through her dedication to my craft, where she brings several combined years of experience. She possess a diverse background including retail, higher education, ministry, manufacturing, B2B, and B2C; all of which have positioned Regina as a well-versed contributor and leader in multiple areas. Known as a strategic thinker, Regina is a results-driven. She prides herself in combining traditional as well as out-of-the-box thinking to develop holistic plans and executes accordingly. Praised for having a knack to bring things together with minimal or extensive details/direction, she possess proven track record of optimal results throughout various project stages. When Regina isn’t working, she enjoys spending time with her dog, Murphy, family, and close friends – and, of course, on social media.

Embracing the idea of diversity, inclusion and equity is not about numbers. It’s not about the number of people you have on your team from a marginalized community nor is it about the potential for revenue. When an organization embraces multiculturalism in it’s purest form, it acknowledges that the experiences of marginalized communities are their business. These organizations adopt actions and proclamations that emphatically say “I see you, I appreciate you, I support you, and I am WITH you.”
2:00 pm BREAK    
2:30 pm Breakout A: Code Blue: Reviving a Paper Business in a Pandemic

 

Janna Wade, Owner and Designer, Paper Mummy Co.

Read Janna's Bio

Janna Wade never went to medical school, but married someone who did. She’s an eye surgeon’s wife, and a mother of three little ones. Her husband loves helping his patients see more clearly while she loves helping her customers see the humor in health challenges. Research shows humor can heal the body and soul. Everything is a little bit easier with laughter. Paper Mummy Co. is her ever-changing line of stationery and gifts. It’s all inspired by “real life” health challenges, staff and funny medical moments. All products are physician-approved.

Just when you think your stationery business is on life support, visit an E.R. (GCA Workshop) STAT! Think your business needs C.P.R. (Cards & Product Resuscitation)? Learn how to breathe new life into it while catering to an ever-changing customer base during a global pandemic. Don’t reinvent the wheel; channel your inner marketing guru, Seth Godin; and get a full workup on your approach to customer service. Same-day testing available and labs are covered by assurance that you’ll feel better after attending this workshop.
2:30 pm Breakout B: The Power of Influence: What Happens When You Show Up

Regina Patterson
Owner and Principal,
RRP Marketing

Read Regina's Bio

Speaker. Writer. Activist. Marketing is Regina Patterson’s superpower. She fights for the underdog, has a passion for marketing, and is really good at what she do…because she is a nerd. A cool nerd; yet, still a nerd. And she brings all of this passion, zeal, and rockstar energy to RRP Marketing, a full-service marketing agency intent on helping small and mid-sized businesses and non-profits create sustainable businesses through smart marketing decisions. Regina’s passion for marketing strategy and communications can be seen through her dedication to my craft, where she brings several combined years of experience. She possess a diverse background including retail, higher education, ministry, manufacturing, B2B, and B2C; all of which have positioned Regina as a well-versed contributor and leader in multiple areas. Known as a strategic thinker, Regina is a results-driven. She prides herself in combining traditional as well as out-of-the-box thinking to develop holistic plans and executes accordingly. Praised for having a knack to bring things together with minimal or extensive details/direction, she possess proven track record of optimal results throughout various project stages. When Regina isn’t working, she enjoys spending time with her dog, Murphy, family, and close friends – and, of course, on social media.

Users continue to see social media platforms as a place where they go to catch up with friends and family, crack a joke, and voice their latest rant. Social media channels are personal. The last thing a person is looking to encounter is advertising.

So why not be personal? The reality is that 1) people buy from people or 2) people buy because they were influenced by another person. Whether real or fictitious, top-performing organizations and individuals with rising personal platforms are leveraging personality and authenticity as a key differentiator.

From insane scenarios to relatable stories to savage tweets, organizations have turned real life and awesome stories into emotive connections. These connections move from brand affinity to purchase to loyalty. Ultimately, you will see brand evangelism; i.e. Word of Mouth, which is the best (and cheapest) form of marketing. The outcome: one big thumb up. (I apologize for the pun. I couldn’t resist.) More importantly, you will unleash a tactic that has a history of driving revenue.

2:30 pm Breakout C: Working with Sales Reps for Small Brands


Charlie Wright
, Founder, Minor Thread

Welcome to Working With Sales Reps 101! We’ll talk about the basics of working with sales reps with a focus on small brands. Join us for a fun presentation followed by a Q&A session.
3:00 pm BREAK    
3:15 pm Breakout A: How to Form Strategic Partnerships for Growing Your Business

Tara Tonsetic, Owner/Founder, taratonsetic.com

Read Tara's Bio

Tara has worked and consulted for organizations in both the for-profit and non-profit industries. With more than 18 years of experience in the world of marketing + events, she has quality experience in a variety of areas. She recently launched a passion business based on her love of greeting cards + events. Tara is married with a young son and resides in Cleveland, Ohio.

In this session, you will learn how to successfully form strategic partnerships, as well as cultivate existing relationships to increase exposure and growth for your business. The session will provide attendees the tools and tips they need to work on this area of their business with practical examples, such as some insight on the launching of a greeting card quarterly subscription mailer and real-life scenarios. Within the theme of Reset. Recover. Reimagine., attendees will walk away with a solid plan to interject this strategy into their already existing marketing plan.
3:15 pm Breakout B: Digital to Print in 2020
Phil Linder, Director of Operations, Sandboxx

Read Phil's Bio

Phil Linder is the Director of Operations for Sandboxx, a mobile technology company that offers a digital to print mail service for military families and recruits in basic training.

 

 

Sam Meek, CEO and Founder, Sandboxx

Sandboxx is a mobile technology company that offers a digital to print mail service for military families and recruits in basic training. Sandboxx users can use the app for your smartphone to send a physical letter and photo to a loved one in military basic training. Sandboxx was created to enable people to send letters to anyone in basic training from the convenience of their smartphone. We have create a service that blends both digital technology and paper letters that keeps families connected with their loved ones while in training. To date Sandboxx users have sent 5 million letters since 2015 to recruits and service members in the country and around the world. Sandboxx letters are printed and mailed overnight from Arlington, VA.
3:15 pm Breakout C: Navigating the World of Sales Reps & Maintaining Relationships with Stores Allison De Meulder, Former Owner of Matrick & Eve and Invitation Consultants, Emerson Built That

Read Alison's Bio

In 2014, I founded Matrick & Eve, a wholesale greeting card and gift company that offered a personalized, hands-on approach and dedication to hand-crafted design, printing, packaging, and shipping. Within a 3 year period, I cultivated strategic retail partnerships that enabled our company to achieve product placement in over 2,500 retail locations in the U.S. & Canada including Target, The Container Store, corporate-owned Hallmark, Paper Source and Sur La Table stores, as well as over 600 privately owned specialty stores. I not only focused on directing the company’s end-to-end product development, creative direction/concept design, merchandising & omni-channel digital marketing strategy but simultaneously was dedicated to client service and building long lasting relationships in the industry that enabled the company to operate in a very difficult, low-margin industry with few barriers to entry. I worked with multiple showrooms and rep groups, in addition to exhibiting at trade shows. We also won a Louie Award and had a few nominations. I built Matrick and Eve on the heels of Invitation Consultants. I had a vision for a better way to create and deliver invitations leveraging technology and founded IC, an Ecommerce invitation company specializing in a personalized approach for B2C & B2B clients. Within a 6-year period, IC achieved $6 million in revenue through a cohesive brand strategy across all online platforms. I also mentor and host a weekly podcast about entrepreneurship.
Love designing cards and gifts, but not sure how to sell them? Your designs need a home, so find them places to land. We’ll discuss three types of goals: brand, rep, store. Brand goals address getting the brand into paper loving stores; and deciding between sales rep groups versus independent reps. Once you’ve made it through the door and are in the company of other fabulous brands, how can you stand out? Well, that is where rep goals come in. How to make rep lives’ easier, get your product seen at stores and get feedback that is uber important to keep growing, as they have all of the juicy details. Now that your product has been picked up by stores, you have store goals and a captive audience. Build those relationships, as you never know when you and your rep group break up. It’s all part of the wholesale puzzle!
3:45 pm BREAK    
4:00 pm Industry and Buying Insights from the Online Marketplace, Faire

Sara Ittelson
Head of Strategic Partnerships
FAIRE

Read Sara's Bio

Sara Ittelson is the Head of Strategic Partnerships at Faire. Prior to Faire she spent four years on the Global Business Development team at Uber, working first on the ride-share business and then on Uber Eats. Prior to her time at Uber Sara led a global BD team at an Edtech startup in NYC building adaptive learning technology. Through these experiences, she is passionate about technology platforms ability to support individuals in reaching their full potential and pursuing their entrepreneurial passions. She is an alumni of the Stanford Graduate School of Business and Northwestern University, and is the mom to a fiery 3 year old daughter.

As the retail industry navigates this unprecedented holiday season, online wholesale marketplace, Faire has been working to analyze buying behavior on the platform, gathering insights to help brands and retailers be as prepared as possible for the unpredictable nature of this season.

During this presentation, Sara will share an overview of the results and trends collected from Faire’s first virtual trade show, Faire Summer Market, which gathered thousands of independent brands and retailers at the end of August to kickoff the holiday buying season. The presentation will also share new insights gleaned from a November survey to arm the GCA community with up to date intel on what strategies are working for Faire’s community of over 100,000 brands and retailers.

4:30 pm Digital Strategies to Reach New Customers

Ariana Waller, Wallway Technologies

Read Ariana's Bio

Ariana Waller is a 3X founder, full stack-software developer, tech consultant and host of the technology podcast, Women in Tech with Ariana podcast. Ariana is the owner of Wallway Technologies, a technology company that helps non-technical founders develop tech solutions through consulting and development. With a listener base in 10+ countries, Ariana was featured in Forbes for her tech podcast work in and rated Top 5 podcasts for product managers in 2020. Ariana previously served as Chief Technology Officer of Michigan’s first uber eats style platform for cannabis based products and is a 2019 Forbes 30 Under 30 semi-finalist for the company. Ariana has consulted 60+ startups and business owners into developing modern technology solutions to help scale their companies and develop digitally efficient business models.


Let’s talk about tangible digital strategies to Reach New Customers. Ariana waller, CEO of Wallway Technologies will walk you through a 20 minute session
sharing 4 apps your business must use to reach new customers and 3 apps every greeting card business owner needs for their website to help with lead generation
and enhancing your customers digital experience! In the last 10 minutes attendees will have the opportunity to vote on which technical strategy they would like to
be demonstrated live on Friday!
5:00 pm

An Adventure in Shopping: Independent Retailer Pivot Story

 

Mary Liz Curtin, Owner, Leon & LuLu

Set in the historic Ambassador Roller Rink and Clawson Theater in Downtown Clawson, Michigan, Leon & Lulu offers one-of-a-kind & custom furniture, as well as a spectacular selection of gifts, books, toys, accessories, and greeting cards. This virtual tour through side by side locations ends with a socially distanced conversation with Dave Phipps and Mary Liz Curtin inside the Clawson Theater. Discover the philosophy driving the success of Leon & Lulu and the techniques Mary Liz employed to pivot – or scramble, as she puts it – during the Pandemic. From live social media events to e-commerce to the ins and outs of selling greeting cards, Mary Liz candidly shares her struggles and successes as an independent retailer in 2020.
6:00 pm Retreat Activity:  Passion with Purpose…and Cheese

John and Kendall Antonelli

Don’t miss this opportunity for a fun, private cheese tasting while you learn about how one small retailer incorporates social impact into their business. You’ll receive a custom tasting box that includes 7 cheeses with 7 food pairings (serves up to 4). This husband-and-wife pair of cheese experts will walk you through 7 delicious pairings, giving you a chance to explore products made by passionate makers like you. Made from milk, not paper!  

John and Kendall Antonelli opened their specialty food shop in Austin, TX in 2010 and have received numerous awards and accolades, including Travel + Leisure Magazine’s “Best Cheese Shops” and Local Heroes (8 consecutive years). On the surface, it’s a success dream story – a business launched after a honeymoon decision to quit their jobs. But the Antonellis have faced their share of challenges, and in the past two years have had to recover—from business losses, personal struggles, and most recently, the impact of a global pandemic. Learn how they persevered and pivoted by relying on their true north ethos of “Passion with Purpose” to guide them through the challenges, all while you explore and learn about their passion – cheese. Here’s a preview of how they share their vision with new hires, making sure their team is in alignment from day one! 


FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 13

TIME(EST) SESSION          SPEAKER  
10:45 am Retreat Activity: Restorative Morning Yoga Instructor:  Christine Hyatt, West Side Yoga Collective This gentle, restorative yoga practice combines mindful movements, breath awareness and stillness, helping to reset your mind and mood. This all-levels class will open and expand the body and mind and can be experienced from a yoga mat or seated in/supported by a chair. Kick off day 2 of the GCA Workshop & Retreat with this 30-minute session and get into the right mindset to learn, engage, and RESET.
11:30 am It Wasn’t a Cliff…It Was a Launchpad: Using the Ashes of 2020 to Reimagine New Possibilities

Shannon Cohen, Founder/CEO, Shannon Cohen, Inc.

Read Shannon's Bio

Shannon Cohen is founder and CEO of Shannon Cohen, Inc. – a boutique firm with a mighty imprint and reputation for excellence. Her clients include: The White House Office of National Drug Control Policy, Helen Devos Children’s Hospital, United Way, American Heart Association, Blue Cross, Blue Shield of Michigan, The University of Michigan, The University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill, and Steelcase, Inc. Using a head+heart approach, Shannon excels in engaging change agents in transparent conversations about the unspoken truths of leadership. Shannon doesn’t just ‘speak’ to leaders; she speaks ‘into’ the lives of leaders. Shannon is an author, podcaster, and owner of a greeting card and inspiration product line called Tough Skin, Soft Heart. Her Tough Skin, Soft Heart products are available at a host of retailers nationwide. Her Tough Skin, Soft Heart podcast reaches subscribers nationally and globally with weekly grab-and-go encouragement for difference makers. Her 2nd book, “It’s Normal to Shake as You Soar” was released in September 2020. Shannon is respected and renowned for empowering organizations to integrate innovation, research, emerging trends, and creativity to cultivate continuous improvement and spur ongoing learning. Shannon is the 2020 YWCA Tribute Award recipient and was named one of the 2020 and 2018 50 Most Influential Women in West Michigan by the Grand Rapids Business Journal. Shannon is an alumnus of the prestigious W.K. Kellogg Foundation Community Leadership Network Fellowship and a former Encore Innovation Fellow.

 

We have lamented the losses of 2020 long enough. Now is the time to release, reset, and reimagine. In this interactive session, Shannon will share inspiration + strategy designed to uplift and ignite. Attendees will leave this session inspired to reimagine the cliffs of 2020 as launchpads for their next BIG idea!
12:00 pm Q&A with GCA UK

Amanda Fergusson, Executive Director, GCA UK

 

 

Nora Weiser, Executive Director, GCA US

Join Greeting Card Association UK’s Executive Director, Amanda Fergusson, and Nora Weiser, Executive Director of our own stateside GCA for an interview style discussion about, well, greeting cards! Amanda will share insights from GCA UK’s own recent conference, trends from the High Street, and some of the challenges and opportunities publishers and retailers will have to overcome in year ahead. You’ll also get a chance to view this year’s fun Thinking of You Week video created to promote greeting cards within the industry and to consumers.
12:30 pm Industry Fundamentals: What’s Changed And What Hasn’t

Todd Litzman, Co-Founder and CEO, Brandwise

Read Todd's Bio

As the Co-Founder and CEO of Brandwise, Todd has spent the last 24 years as an impassioned advocate of the Gift and Home industries. Todd spent 5 years on the GHTA Board including serving as President 2013-2014. Todd actively engages with the Brandwise client community and guides the company’s vision in everything from product development to sales. Together with his wife Jannetta, Co-Founder and CFO of Brandwise, they have built a reputation as trusted partners to thousands of professionals in the Gift and Home segment.

 


Ari Lowenstein, Chief Strategy Officer, Brandwise

Read Ari's Bio

As Chief Strategy Officer for Brandwise, Ari Lowenstein uses his unique experience and extensive network within the industry to guide Brandwise’s strategy in a new era of growth for the Brandwise Ecosystem. Ari has a broad background, including owning an Italian gift company, acting as an Intergalactic Business Development Manager, co-owning Canopy and serving as a current board member of Gift for Life and Past President of the Gift Sales Managers Association.

 

What’s changed? Almost everything and nothing at all! What’s the same? Almost everything and nothing at all! Salespeople present products to retailers to create orders, these orders, in turn, are delivered to suppliers, and finally these orders are shipped to the retailers. These haven’t changed. Fundamentally, what we’ve experienced over the past seven months comes down to a rapid adjustment to HOW we work with each other and our customers. During this session, Todd and Ari will cover a broad range of topics, focusing on this adjustment and the impact on gift and home stakeholders. Specific to the the Greeting Card industry, Brandwise has aggregated the sales data from 50 GCA members for every state in the country over the past 25 months. Combined with 170 Agencies, 4,000 Salespeople, 3,500 Suppliers and 300K retailers Brandwise holds a broad base of experience and data. Todd and Ari will combine feedback collected from Brandwise hosted roundtables and discussions, 46 combined years of hands-on experience with the gift and home industry, and the analysis of over $4B in SKU level sales data that has passed through the Brandwise Ecosystem over the past couple of years. Learn how the past year has impacted many of us and how the new Brandwise platform is uniquely positioned to help all stakeholders evolve and thrive.
1:00 pm The Power of Mail

Wendell Brown, Inspirational Speaker

Read Wendell's Bio

Wendell L. Brown Sr. is a Ball State University graduate and Hall of Famer. He obtained his Bachelor’s Degree in 2008 in Criminal Justice and has worked as a lawyer’s assistant in the Michigan Law Firm Plunkett Cooney. Wendell applied his education and knowledge in Criminal Justice to serve at risk youth as a treatment specialist at Don Bosco Hall in Detroit, Michigan. He is also the founder of Brown Elite Youth Elevation Foundation, a youth and community empowerment organization. Wendell began playing multiple sports as an adolescent but his sports career includes playing professional football in America, Canada, Austria and other European countries. He also has experience coaching youth, high school and collegiate football in North America, Europe and Asia. The Detroit native uses his work ethic, his athletic and education background, along with his passion for community service and love for uplifting and growing others, as his driving force for success. Wendell is currently mentoring and training Detroit’s inner-city youth through the Sound Mind Sound Body Football Academy, along with coaching high school football, at his Alma Mater Detroit Martin L. King Jr. Senior High School.

In today’s society we have become accustomed and maybe even reliant on communicating through our cellphones, tablets and laptops for human interaction. We also rely heavily on our ability to communicate verbally. What happens when these forms of communication are no longer available to us? Wendell will speak on what it was like to be in a situation where our most common forms of communication were stripped away and he was forced to rely solely on cards and letters.  He will also emphasize on the power and importance of interaction through written word.
1:30 pm Update on the USPS Partnership with the GCA: A Dialogue with Steve Monteith

Steve Monteith, Chief Customer and Marketing Officer, USPS

Update on the USPS Partnership with the GCA: A Dialogue with Steve Monteith, the newly promoted Chief Customer and Marketing Officer. USPS has faced numerous challenges from COVID, the contentious election season, and new leadership. Learn how the USPS is managing these challenges and their impact on the partnership with the greeting card industry to grow cards in the mailstream.
2:00 pm BREAK    
2:30 pm Breakout A: CTRL-ALT-DEL (Reboot Your Systems for Success)
Tiffany Chalk
, Owner/Leader Planner, Tiffany Chalk Events and Simply TC Designs

Read Tiffany's Bio

Tiffany Chalk is a sought-after event planner. Dedicated to her craft, Tiffany stays abreast of what she calls ‘T3™’ (the latest techniques, technology and talent boosters), making her the go-to for forecasting industry trends. Amplifying the WOW factor of her client’s experience regardless of the limited budgets, especially during space transformations is Tiffany’s expertise. It is this expertise that has also made her one of the Delaware Valley’s most sought-after speakers at industry conferences and retreats both internationally and state-side in recent years. Her charismatic demeanor coupled her spontaneity to conceptualize creative party and entertaining ideas has led to several guest appearances on Fox 29’s Good Day Philadelphia and WBOC TV’s Delmarva Life. In addition to being a businesswoman, Tiffany is a loving wife and mother. She has served as adjunct instructor for over five years at Delaware Technical Community College for the Wedding and Event Planning Certificate course. In her spare time, Tiffany volunteers for several charitable organizations and serves on the board of several non-profits.
Are you spending more time working in your business than working on your business? Looking for proven tactics to implement solid systems in your business to garner success? Beyond perfecting your craft, being a design maven, and hiring great team members, you must dedicate attention to building an organized and systemic approach to running the actual business.
2:30 pm Breakout B: Bridging the Digital/Physical Divide: Unmasking eCommerce Greeting Card Sales During the Pandemic

Stephan Sabo
CMO/Co-Founder, Card Isle Corporation

Read Stephan's Bio

Stephan Sabo is the Co-Founder and CMO of the Card Isle Corporation. At Card Isle, he is involved in marketing, content strategy, product design, customer experience and high level company direction. Card Isle is a greeting card technology company that provides a platform for selling and printing personalized greeting cards, both in store and online. Card Isle works with a network of hundreds of florists, retail gift stores and eCommerce gifting brands across North America that sell their personalized greeting cards. Card Isle licenses thousands of designs from hundreds of artists on a non-exclusive royalty basis.

During this Pandemic, retail has seen an explosive growth in eCommerce and online ordering volume. As customers do their best to avoid unnecessary social contact, they are leaning heavily into eCommerce technologies offered by their favored brick and mortar retailers. For milk they are choosing click-and-collect at their grocery, and when they need to send condolences or wish a happy birthday, they are ordering flowers for no-touch delivery from their florist’s website. Unfortunately in this time where we need greeting cards most, the traditional brick and mortar greeting card retail model has not been able to make a smooth transition to eCommerce. Too many SKU’s and low inventory make online availability difficult, if not-feasible for most retail brands. As we look toward a post-pandemic world, many industry experts believe that the retail landscape has changed permanently and customers will continue to use the eCommerce tools they became accustomed to during the pandemic. In this presentation; Stephan Sabo, co-founder and CMO of Card Isle, will discuss how his company’s greeting card retail solution bridges the gap between eCommerce ordering and sales in physical storefronts. He will share how Card Isle’s eCommerce driven print-on-demand greeting card system is solving these problems for retailers; how a print-on-demand approach can open up new opportunities for greeting card sales; and a case study for how one artist leveraged the Card Isle platform to become a top seller with her line of Covid themed designs.
2:30 pm Breakout C: How Two Wholesale Stationery Brands Leverage Faire

Sara Ittelson
Head of Strategic Partnerships
FAIRE

 

 

Jill Shephard, Owner and CEO, Ruff House Print Shop

Beth Snyder, Owner / Creative Director ,1canoe2

Faire is an online wholesale marketplace taking a data-driven approach to connect local, independent retailers with the best brands to stock their shelves. Hear from the owner and CEO of Ruff House Print Shop, Jill Shephard, and the owner and creative director of 1canoe2, Beth Snyder on how they’re leveraging Faire to streamline their only wholesale operations and reach new buyers during this critical time.
3:00 pm BREAK    
3:15 pm Breakout A: Are Paper Greeting Cards a Sustainable Choice? Kathi Rowzie
Vice President of Operations, 
Two Sides North America

Read Kathi's Bio

Kathi Rowzie is an accomplished communications, public affairs and sustainability professional whose career spans more than 30 years in corporate and consulting roles with Fortune 500 companies, including extensive experience in the paper and forest products industry. Before joining Two Sides as Vice President of Operations in March 2020, she served for five years as vice president of communications and public affairs at Verso Corporation. During her previous paper industry career at International Paper she was both executive communications counsel to the chairman from 2013 to 2015 and communications leader for the company’s Printing and Communications Papers and Coated Papers businesses and their 12 paper mills from 2003 to 2006. Among her other responsibilities, she worked with many of the industry’s leading organizations, campaigns and coalitions, including Two Sides. As a sustainability issues management and communications consultant, Kathi helped guide paper industry customers in the development of innovative sustainability strategies, programs, responsible paper procurement policies and communications, and in their response to the claims and demands of ENGOs. She has authored sustainability-related feature articles and more than a dozen CSR annual reports, and was instrumental in helping Two Sides North America launch many of its initial educational and marketing materials. She began her corporate career at GEICO, where for nearly a decade she was director of Business and Community Relations and led the company’s public relations, community relations and legislative action coalition building. Kathi is a Washington, D.C. native and received her B.S. in journalism from the University of Maryland College of Journalism.
Most people agree that we should do all we can to protect the environment, and they want to do the right things to help. This includes choosing products that are produced, used and disposed of in an environmentally responsible manner – but that’s not always as easy as it sounds. When it comes to paper products, we often hear claims that using paper destroys forests, contributes to climate change and creates an excessive amount of waste, and that electronic communication is a greener option. Some of these are intentional claims that twist the facts to promote a particular environmental agenda while others are simply misguided corporate marketing messages. Regardless of where they come from, these claims confuse consumers and leave them feeling bad about using paper – one of the most sustainable products on earth. That’s why it’s so important for Greeting Card Association members to know the facts and share them at every opportunity. “Are paper greeting cards a sustainable choice?” will provide the information needed to effectively share the great sustainability story of print and paper.
3:15 pm Breakout B: Live Tech Hack with Wallway Technologies

Ariana Waller, Wallway Technologies

Read Ariana's Bio

Ariana Waller is a 3X founder, full stack-software developer, tech consultant and host of the technology podcast, Women in Tech with Ariana podcast. Ariana is the owner of Wallway Technologies, a technology company that helps non-technical founders develop tech solutions through consulting and development. With a listener base in 10+ countries, Ariana was featured in Forbes for her tech podcast work in and rated Top 5 podcasts for product managers in 2020. Ariana previously served as Chief Technology Officer of Michigan’s first uber eats style platform for cannabis based products and is a 2019 Forbes 30 Under 30 semi-finalist for the company. Ariana has consulted 60+ startups and business owners into developing modern technology solutions to help scale their companies and develop digitally efficient business models.

In this session attendees will get to watch a live session of Ariana Waller, CEO of Wallway Technologies, going through a live STEP BY STEP demonstration
 of how a business owner can use apps to enhance their customers experience and get new customers! 
3:15pm Breakout C: Small Business Productivity Management & CRM

Paul Minors
Productivity Blogger and Consultant

Read Paul's Bio

Paul Minors is a productivity blogger and virtual consultant. Paul grew his business “on the side” while working full-time and now consults to companies all around the world helping them with tools like Asana, Pipedrive and Zapier. Paul’s website now receives 100,000+ visits per month and his audience of 35,000+ email subscribers love hearing about how to be more productive in business and life.

Andy Meehan interviews Paul Minors about the importance of having a project management tool and sales CRM within a small business. Paul shares some thoughts on how a project management tool is better than email, how to get started and how the two tools work alongside one another.
3:45 pm BREAK    
4:00 pm Closing Remarks George White, GCA President  
4:30 pm Retreat Activity: Cocktails and Connections   GCA is reimagining happy hour! You’ve missed spending time with your industry friends and colleagues. And while virtual is never quite the same as in person, it can make for a fun and engaging opportunity to kick back with a drink, pop into a chat room, and expand your network. Join Executive Director, Nora Weiser, and Board Member, Susan January of Leanin’ Tree Cards, as they mix up the exclusive 2020 Workshop & Retreat cocktail recipes then invite you to network, connect, and wrap up this year’s event.