Islandboy Spices Shows How to Network Like a Champ at ECRM Sessions  4/24/2024

The opportunity to pitch buyers in private meetings is just one of the benefits of ECRM Sessions; there are also TONS of networking opportunities, and Islandboy Spices Founder Ihsan Sewer maximized every one of them at ECRM's recent Baking, Spices & Breakfast Foods Session

In addition to his 10-minute RangeMe Discovery Hub buyer meetings (which are open to RangeMe subscribers new to ECRM), he went to the educational sessions presented by NIQ's Patrick Dougherty and Fair Trade USA's Olga Preston, and participated in the roundtable discussions. 

But that's not all. He also networked with buyers in the hallways, in the elevator, during the cocktail receptions, and during each meal, getting as much value from these serendipitous meetings as he did from the scheduled ones. 

Tons of networking opportunities at ECRM Sessions

ECRM typically holds several Sessions of related categories concurrently at the same location, as some buyers from mid-market retailers and foodservice operators cross categories. During this particular week, we hosted Sessions for Candy; Snacks; Canned, Dry & Boxed Goods; Condiments, Sauces & Spreads; and the Spices Session in which Ihsan participated (click here for info on each). 

This means we have a lot of buyers floating around, and as Ihsan discovered, this leads to opportunities as well. When a buyer from the Candy Session tried his spices, he hooked Ihsan up with his company's spice buyer, who was not at the session. 

The Recipe for Retail Facebook group

Ihsan is also a member of the Recipe for Retail Facebook Group, an informal community of brands helping each other to get into retail. During the Session, he invited ECRM's Joseph Tarnowski and Tyler Barich to join in in a Facebook Live event for the group, during which they fielded questions related to sessions.

In the video above, Ihsan discusses his philosophy around networking and taking advantage of every opportunity to meet as many people as possible when at an industry gathering. After all, as Ihsan says: "It's who you know and who they know and what we can all do together that makes the difference."


Joseph Tarnowski

VP Content

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