Coverings, which will take place April 14 to 17 in Orlando, Fla., will offer conference sessions geared toward retailers and distributors.

In addition to over 1,000 global exhibitors showing a range of products and technologies, the free conference sessions for distributors and retailers will cover industry updates on tile standards and specification issues, best practices in relations with interior designers, architects and consumers, upcoming economic trends effecting the ceramic industry and how to implement customer engagement through digital media.

Sessions will include: 

•How to Sell to Interior Designers & Architects: During this panel discussion, moderated by Christopher Ramey of Affluent Insights and The Home Trust, Lauren Cherkas of Artistic Tile and Barbie Kennedy of Barbie Kennedy Designs will address how to best serve the specifier community to increase sales. Tuesday, April 14, 8 a.m. to 9 a.m. 

•Secrets to Creating Remarkable Customer Experiences: Join speaker, Sandy Smith, as he advises on the escalating expectations of today’s 24-hour customer. Tuesday, April 14, 10:45 a.m. to 11:45 a.m.

•Future Trends in the U.S. Economy and Ceramic Industry: This two-part session, presented by Donato Grosser of D. Grosser and Associates and Santo Torcivia of Marketing Insights will focus first on the changes in the U.S. economy and housing market and will then concentrate on analyzing the effects on distribution in the ceramic tile industry. Tuesday, April 14, 1:30 p.m. to 2:30 p.m.

•Stone Trends 2015: President and owner of Marazita & Associates, Vince Marazita, will deliver the 17th Annual ‘State of the Industry’ presentation on the dimensional stone market in the U.S. Tuesday, April 14, 1:30 p.m. to 3:30 p.m.

•A Bigger Slice: Using Customer Engagement to Increase Sales: Presenter Ryan Fasan, Professional Attention to Tile Installations, will discuss how the dramatic rise of tile consumption offers increased business opportunities, thanks to the inherent benefits and emerging innovations in the ceramic tile industry. Wednesday, April 15, 9:15 a.m. to 10:15 a.m.

•Image is Everything! How Houzz and Pinterest Steer Clients to Your Tile/Stone Business: A Case Study and Guide for Visual Online And Social Success: This session, presented by Arpi Nalbandian of Tileometry and Christine Whittemore of Simple Marketing Now will address how to offer potential customers with visual inspiration online as they begin the buying process. Wednesday, April 15, 1 p.m. to 2 p.m.

•Six Trends that will Dramatically Change Your Life: President of Affluent Insights and The Home Trust, Christopher Ramey, will share insights on how consumer trends will change the way people do business. Wednesday, April 15, 2:45 p.m. to 3:45 p.m.

•10 Best Practices to Maximize Your Store Experience & Sales: This presentation, led by Nicole Leinbach Reyhle of Retail Minded, will unveil 10 best practices to help retailers and designers increase their success in today’s crowded marketplace. Thursday, April 16, 10:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m.

•Trends in Tile. Representatives from Ceramics of Italy, Tile Council of North America and Tile of Spain—Christine Abbate, Marianne Cox and Ryan Fasan, respectively—will present on the advancements in cutting-edge digital technology and the revival of artisanal processes that have transformed the look and application of tile. Thursday, April 16, 2:45 p.m. to 3:45 p.m.

•Installation Design Showcase Deconstructed: The designers and NTCA Five Star Contractors of the Installation Design Showcase will present on the planning and on-site work dedicated toward bringing their vignettes to life in just five days. Thursday, April 16, 3:30 p.m. to 4:30 p.m.

•The Millennials: The New Generation of Employees and How to Motivate Them: Join Lisbeth Calandrino of Fabulous Floors Magazine as she shares insight into the difference between baby boomers and millennials in the work place. Friday, April 17, 9:30 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. 

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