Call for Speakers

Smoke Jumpers 2020 • Chicago

✧ Do you have an exciting story to tell?
✧ Can you help solve trade and sales planning challenges?
✧ Does your company dabble in promo best practices?

This year at Smoke Jumpers, there are multiple speaking opportunities available.  We're calling on you to speak to our audience!
If you are a foodservice guru, CPG retail expert, Blacksmith customer, industry professional, distributor, operator, retailer or are otherwise connected to trade excellence and promotion planning - we'd love to hear what you have to say.
Those selected to speak will earn free admission to the conference for themselves and a colleague or guest of their choice. 

Submissions are due by Friday December 20, 2019.

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2019 Smoke Jumpers meeting

What is a smoke jumper anyway?

A smoke jumper is sent in as the first line of defense to fight forest fires. They protect natural resources.

Our growing trade community, Smoke Jumpers, is hard at work blazing new trails, acting as the first responders to emerging trends and sharing insights on the cutting edge of foodservice & retail. 

Why speak at the conference?

  • You want to help foodservice and retail manufacturers improve profitability and revenue generation through deal and event performance.
  • You want to share insights about how technology is enabling the industry to evolve promotion and planning strategy.
  • You want to be part of a forum that addresses ideas and challenges which can be directly addressed by Blacksmith's SaaS solutions.

Speak at the conference    

If You've Never Attended Before, Here's What to Expect:


Submission Requirements:

Remember to be clear and descriptive in your proposal. Enter details in the form above.

To help you get started, think about these questions and include the responses as part of your submission:

1. How long will your session be?

2. What's your topic? Does it address or solve a common industry challenge? Outline your talking points.

3. How will attendees benefit from your topic?

4. Incorporate clear takeaways.

5. Highlight your success or the ways in which you have helped others suceed.

Past Speakers:


Jack Li, Datassential



Tom Theis, J.M. Smucker



Mike Druga, Butterball



John Davie, Dining Alliance 


Julie Michel, Rich's



Amy Clark, J.R. Simplot


Past Attendee Companies Include


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Every year, organizations spend too much time going through their annual budgeting process. Each budgeting season brings new challenges for consumer goods companies to navigate. Namely, how can we better manage trade promotion costs while spurring revenue growth?

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Brokers work on behalf of food manufacturers to market products, develop strategic connections, and help determine the right price. A good food broker markets your products to get maximum sales volumes. Brokers and the right broker commission process can be crucial to your business.

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Back in 2017, Sysco announced it would change its deduction policy. Here are some of the questions that are important to ask: What is the dispute process for collecting repayment of unauthorized deductions? Will food show booth fees and food show allowances also become deductions?

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When a company’s focus is on what is spend, there is only a need to monitor the impact on budget rather than monitor the impact on the positive organic growth of the business. 
As is the case in many CPG companies, when this happens trade spending becomes a sunk cost.

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