AFTER A SUCCESSFUL LAUNCH IN 2015, this year’s Best Practices for Consumer Products con- ference moves to Chicago, October 3-5. The conference
theme, Digital Readiness: Evolving the
Consumer Enterprise, echoes what Eventful
Conferences’ in-depth research tells us: the
impact that digitalization will have on consumer behavior and therefore, consumer
products companies, is changing how they
make, distribute, and market their products.
In the age of the digital consumer, “it is
no longer the consumer ‘products’ industry, it is the consumer
‘outcomes’ industry.” This
quote from SAP’s head of
consumer products, E.J.
Kenney is a brilliant encapsulation of the transformation that is going on—
and will continue to drive
change and growth—in
this diverse industry.
This perspective is supported by the hundreds
of research calls, visits and
focus groups that Eventful
with consumer products companies over
the course of the last two years.
“The way we build relevant and value-
driven learning experiences depends on
understanding a given industry from the
inside out, and bringing together content
that honors attendees’ current realities
while taking them on the journey that lights
the path to a successful future, from both a
technology and a business process stand-
point,” says Steve Morris, managing partner
for content at Eventful Conferences.
This year’s Best Practices for Consumer
Products event will again feature dynamic
keynote presentations from industry executives and thought leaders, more than 40
sessions reflecting the needs and interests
of the industry and technology partners
that can help attendees plan for and get the
most out of their investments.
“The conference last year was extremely
valuable to the several Georgia-Pacific busi-
ness and IT professionals who attended,”
says Jim Fletcher, director of IT strategy at
Georgia-Pacific. “The breakout sessions
were some of the best I have seen in por-
traying customer experiences with various
technologies and applications.”
Consumer products organizations are
trying to balance consumer trends toward
convenience, wellness and sustainability
with shifting preferences around in-store
versus online shopping experiences, declin-
ing brand loyalty, and price-consciousness.
They have to compete with nimble, start-
up, direct- to-consumer companies or with
digital intermediaries like Farmzie, an app
that connects local farmers with consum-
ers, offering both a convenient, cost-effec-
tive platform for local, sustainable food
farming and sourcing. Subscription-based
services are taking a bite out of the in-store
grocery business as well, with companies
like Blue Apron, Hello Fresh and dozens of
others piling on.
Companies in every consumer segment
want to understand how, where and when
to grow their organizations, while keeping
cost cutting and efficiency at the forefront.
They still have to make, ship and sell prod-
ucts, so how do they do all of this in light
of digital transformation? What does that
mean for supply chain? How does a com-
pany handle the transition from traditional
sales and operational planning to a process
that is informed by demand sensing and
response? How can they improve financial
forecasting and month- and year-end close
The Best Practices for Consumer Products
conference tells this story and the sessions
and expert presenters are the cast of characters that give life and meaning to it, not
only in the two tracks dedicated to technology, but in the other six tracks focused on
various functional areas like finance, supply
chain and procurement, sales and marketing, data and analytics and a special track
dedicated to agri-business.
Even more powerful than the formal content, attendees at all of Eventful
Conferences’ Best Practices industry events
come back year after year for the amazing
connections, learnings and networking
with industry peers.
“The highlight of events like this is
always the networking” says Lori Plate, of
Johnsonville Sausage. “And being able to
connect with other people who are struggling with the same things and focusing on
what best practices are.” Conference participants can network with executives from
the world’s leading companies, including
PepsiCo, Kellogg’s, Under Armour, Frito-Lay, SABMiller, Whirlpool, Tyson, Edgewell
and many others.
Best Practices for Consumer Products
is a collaboration between, SAP, Eventful
Conferences and ASUG (America’s SAP User
Group). For more information and to register,
DIVING INTO THE DIGITAL DYNAMIC
Industries gather to discuss best practices for connecting with the digital consumer.
By Melissa Reider
Melissa Reider is conference
producer of Best Practices
for Consumer Products at
Eventful Conferences. She can
be reached at melissa.reider@