Shoptalk -2017's hottest retail & ecommerce event - is fast approaching and excitement is in the air at the Decibel Insight offices. To get the inside scoop on what’s in store for attendees this year, I spoke with Shoptalk’s Chief Content Officer Zia Wigder.
How many years has Shoptalk been running and how has it grown in that time?
"We launched our inaugural event in May 2016 -- we started with a goal of 2,000 attendees for year one and ended up with over 3,100. At our second event in March 2017, we expect well over 5,000 people to attend."
What makes Shoptalk different to other conferences?
"Shoptalk is different in multiple ways. First, we are the only event that brings together all the different players across the commerce ecosystem, from large branded manufacturers and retailers to venture-backed startups, and from real estate developers to investors. Second, we are a large-scale conference, not a trade show -- that means we have a laser-like focus on building world-class content and communities rather than a massive expo hall. And third, we have an extremely senior-level audience -- last year 1/3 of our attendees were C-level executives and we had almost 400 CEOs in attendance."
What would your advice be to a first-time attendee?
"I'd advise a first-time attendee to take in a variety of different types of content. Don't just stay with one track -- explore different topics; check out the amazing tech companies on our Demo Track and Startup Pitch; listen to Wharton professors talk about how retail is changing. There are a wide variety of ways to gain insights at Shoptalk -- this is the time to go outside your comfort zone and learn from the best."
What are you personally most looking forward to at this year’s event?
"I'm very excited by all the new networking programs we're launching this year -- we're introducing one-to-one conversations, peer dinners, startup/investor meetings and more. We also have just a phenomenal lineup of speakers in 2017 including the CEOs of Target, eBay, HSN, Kohl's, Houzz, Harry's and Wish, as well as the President of Alibaba and the Heads of Amazon Marketplace and Amazon Prime Now. I'm biased, but it's pretty much the most amazing group of senior-level speakers in the retail and ecommerce industry anywhere."
There you go folks, you’ve heard it direct from Shoptalk on what you shouldn’t miss over the jam-packed 3 days. Thank you Zia for your recommendations!
Are you heading to Shoptalk? If so, let me know in the comments below – and come say hello at the Decibel Insight booth (L106).