The first of four virtual segments is ‘Changes in Retail’ on Thursday, January 28.
The distinguished lineup of guest panelists include Marc Brush, principal in the consulting firm Bend LLC and former editor of Nutrition Business Journal.
As the former editor of NBJ, Brush is an expert in the dynamics and history of sports nutrition. Brush will use his background to put the current retail landscape in context and forecast where the category is headed, based on larger trends that are affecting supplements and nutrition.
Currently, Brush provides counsel and market insights for a wide range of brands in nutrition. “From startups to large CPG, from sports to immunity, from e-commerce to personalization, it's all on my client list,” explained Brush.
Like pretty much everyone else, Brush admits he has packages showing up on his doorstep daily. “It's a broad-based shift toward e-commerce to stay out of stores, and the pandemic has stretched on long enough to make these habitual. I expect we'll never go back to shopping as it was. If you know what you want, buy it online. If you want to browse and discover, go to a store.”
Brush will use his skill set and experience as a consumer to take a deep dive into this shift to e-commerce.
“The impact of gym closures during COVID plus the decline of the big box retailers plus market dynamics as the sports category shifts younger, less male, more holistic — all of that fuels online sales and boy, I'm hearing that it's super competitive now,” commented Brush.
With so many businesses' success hanging in the balance, Brush will also lay out strategies to win online.
“Social media has diminishing returns, but it's the only game in town. Smart brands are figuring this out in real time, working their own website base alongside Amazon, adding stickiness with special discounts and promos for their fans. Special SKUs and flavors, beta testing new products,” said Brush. “E-commerce is a young channel with changeable dynamics, but you've got to dive in and try these things now. It takes commitment, because there are so few known answers with lasting value.”
The panel also includes Mike Archbold, CEO at the Council for Inclusive Capitalism and former CEO of GNC, Joshua Schall of J. Schall Consulting, and Steve Hanson, founder and CEO of Nutrasocial.
During the panel segment, attendees will have a chance to ask any burning questions they may have to these prominent voices in the industry.
Additional segments of the retail event will include a fireside chat with moderator Danielle Masterson and Joshua Schall on how the COVID-19 pandemic has accelerated e-commerce adoption and shifted consumer behavior, as well as a short presentation by Steve Hanson on the retail landscape from a business development, branding and marketing standpoint.
This event is the first of a four-part series, which will take place on a weekly or biweekly basis through February. Other events will take a deep dive into Recovery, the Microbiome as well as Whitespaces in Sports Nutrition, including the female athlete and e-sports opportunities.