Marla Bosworth is the founder and owner of Back Porch Soap Company. She is a modern alchemist, shamanic practitioner and soul destiny coach. She travels worldwide, teaching conscious beauty experiential workshops that combine making soap and herbal skincare with alchemy and energetics.

March 06, 2011

Blog Post Series: Top Five Tips for Attending the HSMG Soap Conference in Miami

It's March, and I can hardly believe the Handmade Soapmakers Guild Conference in Miami, Florida is only two months away. I've been busy working on my two presentations and demo for the conference. Held May 18-20 at the Miami Downtown Hilton hotel, this fun and inspiring conference attracts entrepreneurs for lectures, classes, workshops and networking.

This is the third year I've been asked to speak at the conference. I'll be giving a presentation on "How to Successfully Wholesale" and a demo called "Wild Child Soapmaking: Combining MP & CP Methods."

This is a six-part blog post series to share what I've learned from attending past conferences. I've been picking up tips each year and thought it would be helpful for new attendees. If you have been attending the soap conference please leave your helpful suggestions and tips in the comments and I'll share them in this series as well.

Here are my top five tips that I'll publish in detail this week:
  1. Proof That An Open Mind Could Lead to More Sales

  2. Even If You're Shy, Just Say Hi

  3. How to Get Your Social Media Game on During and After the Conference

  4. Why You Should Pack An Extra Suitcase

  5. How Not To Miss Each and Every Workshop
The keynote speaker for the 2011 Annual Conference is Barbara Corcoran, head of The Corcoran Group and real estate contributor to NBC's TODAY Show and a "shark" on the ABC reality show Shark Tank. Barbara is also a regular columnist for the New York Daily News and MORE Magazine.

There are many other fabulous speakers: Debbie May of Wholesale Supplies Plus, Kayla Fioravanti of Essential Wholesale, Marie Gale of "Soap and Cosmetic Labeling: How to Follow the Rules and Regs Explained in Plain English,", Larry Plesent of Vermont Soap, Tina Howard of Majestic Mountain Sage, world reknown aromatherapist Robert Tisserand and many more.

In addition to informative workshops, there is plenty of time to network with other business owners (one of my favorite parts of the conference). The evening sponsored dinners and entertainment are relaxing, informal and included in the conference package. Speaking of dinner, you won't go hungry at any HSMG conference. Last year I won more than $250 in raffles and giveaways - in addition to the $100 highly coveted goodie bag!

Two years ago the conference was held in Palm Springs, CA and I spoke about "Differentiating Yourself in the Highly Competitive Market of Soapmaking." Attendees learned how to increase sales by targeting niche and vertical markets. There I presented on how to develop an "eye" for demands and trends in other industries to stay ahead of the competition.

Last year at the HSMG 2010 Soap Conference in beautiful Denver, CO I presented on "New Opportunities in the Melt and Pour Soap Market." After the Palm Springs conference I didn't know how the Soap Guild could possibly top such a fantastic event, but they did.

It's not too late to join us in May. Simply visit the HSMG website and sign up. Hope to see you in Miami!


Beth said...

Very good tips, Marla. I'm getting so excited about the conference!

backporchsoap said...

Thanks, Beth! Looking forward to networking and having fun. I need some Miami heat about now.

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