ICBA 2020 Conference

Read ICBA 2020 session and event descriptions below, organized by date and time. Click on a speaker's name to read a complete bio. Looking for Marketing sessions? View Marketing Track sessions here.

Tuesday, February 4, 2020

ICBA Business Meeting & "State of ICBA" Strategic Update
8:30 AM - 9:30 AM

ICBA CEO Jon Bibo & ICBA Board of Directors

ICBA CEO Jon Bibo and the ICBA Board of Directors share the latest ICBA activities and vision for the future of the organization. During this meeting, Members will elect nominees to the 2020 ICBA Board of Directors. Please note that the ICBA Annual Business Meeting & Strategic Update is for ICBA Members only.

Sarah QuinlanMacro versus Micro: How the Latest Economic Trends are Affecting the Consumer….and What you can do about it!
9:45 AM – 10:45 AM
Sarah Quinlan

We’re pleased to welcome back Sarah Quinlan to the ICBA Conference stage. Sarah presented at ICBA’s 2016 and 2017 Conferences, and will share her no nonsense views of what’s really going on in terms of consumer spending behaviors across multiple segments in the U.S. and around the world. Sarah will make sure you do not fall prey to the hype! Sarah will help you separate the myths from the realities to provide valuable insights that can help you develop smarter, more informed business strategies.

The Truth about Shopping vs. Buying: How Retailers Can & Must Serve Both Groups
11:00 AM - 12:00 PM
Suzanne Powers & Toby Southgate

McCann Worldgroup is a leading global marketing and branding consultancy with over 20,000 employees in 100+ countries. McCann’s Suzanne Powers & Toby Southgate will share their insights and proprietary data on how business and brand strategies must intersect to achieve overall success and to best serve customers. Suzanne and Toby will identify the macro-level truths that will help you separate fact from fiction in today’s omnichannel world of retailing, and they will explain why independent retailers must understand the different needs and wants of “shoppers” vs. “buyers” to serve them both well.

Suzanne Powers

Suzanne Powers

Toby Southgate

Toby Southgate

ICBA Success Stories
1:15 PM - 2:10 PM

ICSR 2018 Award Winners in course materials, apparel, technology products, and supplies will share their formulas for success. Each 2018 ICSR Award Winner will present the strategies and tactics that have helped them maintain outstanding performance in a market that has become only more challenging in recent years.

ICSR Award Winner Announcements
2:10 PM - 2:30 PM

The Independent College Stores Report is the most comprehensive financial and operating survey in the college store industry. Each year, the ICSR Committee reviews hundreds of pages of data from the ICSR to identify stores that have achieved sustained high performance over a 5-year period. The 2019 award winners will be announced and recognized in this session.

Store2Store Leadership Networking Discussions
2:45 PM - 4:15 PM

Attendees in the Strategic Direction track participate in Store2Store Networking Discussions. Discussions are grouped by total store sales and cover important topics, industry trends, and current challenges. Store2Store Discussions build on the constant flow of ideas and help leaders identify opportunities for collaborative solutions. Everyone benefits from sharing their experiences and knowledge.

Buyer2Buyer/Marketer2Marketer Smartest Thing Networking Discussions
2:45 PM - 4:15 PM

Buyers and Marketers participate in the Smartest Thing Networking Discussions, with buyers grouped by product category. In these discussions, participants look back on the past year to discuss what worked and what didn't, then share what they're planning to try next. At the end of the session, all participants write down the "Smartest Thing" they heard, so the ideas can be shared with everyone during the recap sessions.

Store2Store & Marketer2Marketer Networking Discussion Recap
4:30 PM - 5:00 PM

All Store2Store breakout discussion groups and Marketer2Marketer Smartest Thing discussion group come together for a recap of all the items discussed.

Buyer2Buyer Smartest Thing Networking Discussion Recap
4:30 PM - 5:00 PM

All Buyer2Buyer Smartest Thing discussion groups come together for a recap of all the items discussed.

Open House Preview Night Reception
5:30 PM - 7:30 PM

All attendees informally browse exhibit areas—PowerHall, D&H Pavilion, Specialty Zone, and PowerSuites—over appetizers and drinks, and play the PRIMEtime BINGO game to win prizes! Last names A-L start in PowerSuites in the Casita Village and last names M-Z start in the exhibit areas on the main floor of the hotel (PowerHall and D&H Pavilion). Attendees switch zones between 6:20 and 6:40 PM (listen for the chimes).

Wednesday, February 5, 2020

Algernon Callier

Practical Innovation that Moves the Needle
9:45 AM - 10:45 AM
Algernon Callier

We’re pleased to welcome Algernon Callier to the ICBA Conference stage as someone for whom innovation has not just been an occasional business tactic, it has been an effective and essential business strategy. Al will share hard won practical insights about achieving scalable innovation and its impact in the “new normal” of omni-channel and increasingly experience-driven retail environments. He’ll focus on how to excel beyond “pilots and demos” to help bring about substantive innovation that can be adapted to stores and campuses of all types and characteristics. He’ll touch on key themes such as: Hacking Creativity and Resources, Thinking Inside & Outside The Box, Developing An Innovation Mindset, and more. Al brings a unique point-of view about experiential retail based on extensive experience working in the dynamic and creative theme park resort environment.

Ken Wincko

Understanding Students is the Key to Supporting Students: Insights into Student Behaviors & Trends
11:00 AM - 12:00 PM
Ken Wincko

Student behaviors and expectations are changing rapidly – not only in terms of academic support and retail experience, but from a social and career perspective as well. From Gen Z to Millennials, it is critical for your entire team to understand these trends so you can create an action plan for making your store an even stronger component of student support on campus. In this session, Ken Wincko, Barnes & Noble’s Vice President of Marketing, has agreed to openly share their internal and proprietary research with ICBA Members on critical topics such as:

  • Student Pulse – A national survey of 120k+ students assessing student expectations and progress in affordability, access and achievement, as well as their expectations and engagement with our stores, general merchandise, and communications/marketing
  • Conversations with Gen Z – Understand their values and what’s important to them
  • Mental Health & Well-being – A view into key triggers of stress for students
  • Convenience Wants/Needs – Overall snack/beverage trends (i.e. healthier snacking) and shopping

In addition, tips and concepts will be shared that provide insights into how B&N is thinking about ways to better position college stores to meet the current and emerging needs of students going forward.

Paul Erickson Management One

Creating A Salesroom (not a Showroom) In Your Store
2:15 PM - 3:15 PM
Paul Erickson

Learn the magic and secrets of traffic-stopping stores. Retailers around the globe, as well as in North America, are focusing on creating compelling and distinctive experiences for their customers that drive sales and loyalty. It’s doesn’t require a massive budget and it doesn’t require an army of associates. Creativity, empathy, and a focus on customer wants and needs is what you need to adapt and win in today’s changing retail environment.

Retail Technology Innovation Showcase
3:30 PM - 5:00 PM

Learn about several cutting-edge technologies that have begun to emerge in general retail at the Retail Technology Innovation Showcase. The “showcase” will be followed by a reception, during which attendees can talk informally with representatives from the featured tech companies.

Thursday, February 6, 2020

How Did Digital Education Become a Thing? Gradually, then Suddenly.
8:30 AM - 9:30 AM
Phil Hill

The first e-book was shared over the Internet (or its predecessor ARPAnet) five decades ago, and web-based online learning started approximately 25 years ago. There has been a continuum of changes taking advantage of digital platforms and content, including long-term developments by textbook publishers themselves. In one view, the change towards digital course materials is nothing new and is an extension of the past. A complementary view, however, is that digital education, in general, is entering its next generation, and we are in the midst of an inflection point in higher education - a period of transformative change. Entire business models for the multi-billion dollar publishing and course materials industry are being up-ended, with changes or threats to distribution channels, the offering of inclusive access models, and even changes in how students pay for content. The changes over the past three years are significant and chaotic. This talk will explore the broad trends driven by digital learning and substantial changes in the course materials market.

Oven Fresh Data: Course Materials Insights From January Rush and Beyond
10:35 AM - 11:20 PM
Ryan Petersen & Jared Pearlman

For over a decade, Verba has helped independent college stores stay current with the changing demands of the course materials business. With Verba and VitalSource now unified, the company is able to draw insights from its unmatched data on what students are purchasing, where they’re shopping, and how much they’re paying. These insights help independent stores set strategy and stay ahead of the competition.

Ryan Petersen and Jared Pearlman will premier their latest insights from the terabytes of data they collected from the January 2020 rush season, including (but not limited to):

  • Comparative trends in student purchasing behavior
  • Market share developments between new, used, rental, and digital
  • Student choice and store performance under all-inclusive models
  • Trends and emerging models in the industry

With the pace of change in the course materials business, you’ll want to have the very latest snapshot of student behavior and course materials sales to chart your strategy and set your objectives.

Going Campus-Wide With Course Materials Access
2:25 PM - 3:10 PM

Panel Discussion

For ICBA Member stores, Inclusive Access Course Materials programs are growing in popularity and scope because they’re helping to drive Course Materials affordability. But what’s next? In this session, three independent stores (serving CU Boulder, San Diego State, and UC Davis) will share detailed progress reports on their initiatives to truly provide all students with access to all of their required course materials, regardless of publisher, at the best price possible. Hear how they’re blazing a trail and overcoming obstacles in ways that could very well be something to consider for your campus.

ICBA Innovators
3:30 PM - 4:40 PM

Higher Education has never been more scrutinized than it is today. Efforts to increase accessibility, affordability, and accountability have changed campus dynamics and expectations. This session will feature ICBA Members whose innovative programs have made an impact on their campuses, and in so doing have attracted positive attention from presidents, provosts, and key campus stakeholders. Representatives from Brown University, Oklahoma State University, Grand Canyon University, and University of Arizona will share their innovation stories.