Past NAMM Show Educational Sessions

Saturday, January 27

1:00pm

5 Unconventional and Incredibly Effective Store Events

Find out how Plum Grove Music drives foot traffic though its doors and forms priceless connections with the community—and what it means to your business. Join the company’s Rick and Alexis Thacker as they reveal their five most effective, and unconventional, store events. Their proven ideas will help you deepen your connections with local schools, civic groups and the community at large. Get specific event models you can make the most of when you return to your business. And take heed: Only...

Session Materials: No downloads for this session.

1:30pm

Essential Tips From Social Media Trendsetters

Looking for proven ideas to improve your social media and online marketing? Look no further than the teens and trendsetters who’ve mastered the fine art of social media traffic, “Likes” and engagement. NAMM’s 2016 Dealer of the Year, Menzie Pittman of Contemporary Music, has studied the best of the best and applied their ideas successfully to his own company’s marketing. Here, he’ll share best practices for successful social media content, covering everything from creative images to tag...


12:30pm

Millennials and Gen Z: Motivating the Next Generation

The future of your workforce depends upon how you hire and engage the next generation of talent. Are you ready? Join CJ Averwater of Amro Music and Ryan West of West Music as they discuss the new realities of finding and motivating millennial and Generation Z employees. Averwater and West will look at proven best practices, including how to attract the best prospects, set clear expectations and prime them for success within your organization. There may even be participation ribbons handed...


10:30am

Proven eBay Success Tips, Secrets and Hacks

In the past decade, Quinn the Eskimo Vintage Horns has become a major online seller of used and vintage horns, due in large part to its success on eBay. Here, company owner and eBay guru Matthew Stoecker will share his top tips, secrets and hacks to help you increase your own eBay business. He’ll cover how to make an attractive listing, photography pointers, best practices for eBay’s condition categories and much more. This session is designed for new and seasoned eBay sellers alike.


2:00pm

5 Ways to Add Value to Your Business—Fast!

Adding value to your music retail business is critical, whether you’re looking for a competitive edge, a line of credit or even a successor. Plus, successful entrepreneurs do it every day with limited time and resources. In this session, financial expert Jaimie Blackman will show you five unique ways to maximize the value of your music store in just 90 days. He’ll look at value-building activities—employee talent, processes and technology, customer relationships, community outreach, and...

Session Materials: No downloads for this session.

11:00am

5 Ways to Upgrade Your Facebook Ads

Be sure you’re getting maximum return on your Facebook ad budget. In this session, Ryan Sargent, social media manager for MakeMusic, and Billy Cuthrell, founder of Progressive Music Center, will show you how to improve your Facebook ads. They’ll cover every step of the ad process, from ad objective to ad creation to ad image. You’ll find out how to use Facebook’s tools to build lookalike and retargeting audiences, tie Facebook ads to your website analytics and optimize your ad’s message....


2:30pm

The 5 Reasons People Don’t Buy—and What to Do About It

What we don’t know about customer behavior can hurt us. Don’t let this affect your business! In a session for owners, managers and salespeople alike, Sean Samson of Sean Samson Training will look at the five REAL reasons customers don’t buy and what you can do about it. He’ll offer a practical, easy-to-follow approach to diagnosing problems and reveal how to create consistent, profitable customer interactions that will accelerate sales. Start the new year by giving yourself and your team a...


4:00pm

Group Classes Done Right

Group classes are an affordable way to increase enrollment in your private lesson program, add value to your business and foster a community of loyal customers. Still, many music retailers and lesson studios have a hard time turning group classes into a sustainable part of their businesses. Here, Jonathan Shue, education director of Dusty Strings Music Store & School, will share his strategies for steadily growing enrollment in group classes and nurturing a community of eager students,...


11:30am

How to Increase Your Sales With Music Lessons

The competition for your customers’ business is fierce. How can you stabilize and boost your sales? Look no further than your music lesson program! Your lesson operation can significantly increase your retail business, and vice versa, but it requires a conscious effort. Here, music lessons authority and Music Inc. magazine columnist Pete Gamber will offer proven, real-world ideas to grow your retail business with music lessons. Don’t miss this opportunity to take your lesson program and your...


12:00pm

Instagram Power Tips for Music Retailers

Instagram is the third-largest social media platform, behind only Facebook and YouTube, and provides a powerful way to connect with your customers and drive real business results. In this jam-packed session, presented by the world’s leading Instagram blogger, Jenn Herman, you’ll discover the best tips and tactics to turn your Instagram account into a lead-generating tool. Walk away with actionable ideas to update your Instagram profile for maximum results, take advantage of business profile...


4:30pm

The Anatomy of a Successful Instagram Post

Why do some Instagram accounts get incredible results while others flounder around? It all has to do with the type of content you create and how you present it to your audience. In a session filled with real-world examples, leading Instagram expert Jenn Herman will show you what performs well on the platform and offer tips to help you create your best content. You’ll get ideas you can implement right away, including sneaky tricks to get more likes, ideas for creating effective Instagram...


3:00pm

15 Simple Ways to Deliver Mind-Blowing Customer Service

Instrumental Music Center has won Music & Sound Retailer magazine’s Best Customer Service and Best Sales Staff awards, among others. And in this high-energy half-hour, you’ll find out why—and what you can take away from the company’s best practices. Instrumental Music Center co-owner Leslie Faltin will share how her staff consistently delivers an outstanding “tailored” experience to every customer, every time. Walk away with ideas you can apply right away to improve the customer...


3:30pm

The Biggest Lesson Program Challenges—and How to Fix Them

If you have a music lesson program, you’ve seen it all: impossible makeup scheduling, teachers leaving and taking students with them, and everything in between. If this sounds all too familiar, you’ll want to be at this hard-hitting session. Mike Risko of Mike Risko Music School will walk through the biggest challenges in running a lesson operation and offer proven, no-nonsense solutions that have worked in his own successful program. Get ideas to help fix these issues once and for all. A...


5:00pm

How to Build Your Audience With Live Streaming

Want to reach a wider audience for your live performances and musical events? Look no further than the power of streaming. Join Craig Moffat, managing director of Datavideo, and find out how to stream simultaneously on multiple online platforms: Facebook, YouTube and your website. Whether you’re a musician or music business hosting live events, Moffat will look at your different options for streaming high-quality video—with minimum bandwidth.


Thursday, January 25

1:30pm

Retail Makeover Tips: Before-and-After Store Design

What do you do when your business changes and you run out of space? In this before-and-after session, Lauren Haas Amanfoh of Royalton Music Center will delve into how she effectively redesigned her store to accommodate its growing lesson program and product offerings, while still maintaining versatility in the layout. She’ll share ideas for growing your own business without increasing your footprint, covering everything from repurposed fixtures to custom solar shades. Before-and-after photos...


12:00pm

5 Hacks to Make the Most of YouTube

Your YouTube channel is an invaluable tool for building your customer base and improving your online visibility, but are you using it to its full advantage? Join Dan Abel, director of marketing for Reverb.com and former content partnerships manager at YouTube. In this session, he’ll explore five little-known tools and features that will help you create better content, get your videos in front of a larger audience and more.


2:00pm

The Top 5 Mistakes in Social Media Marketing

Doing social media is easy—anyone can open a Twitter account and spew out 140 characters of spam. Mastering social media marketing, on the other hand, is an art, and a science. And it’s achievable for music businesses given some direction. Join Link Walls, vice president of digital marketing strategy for e-commerce giant ChannelAdvisor. He’ll walk you through the top five mistakes you’re probably making in your social media marketing, and offer tips and strategies to fix these mistakes. Make...


11:00am

Do You Have the Answers Google Is Looking For? (Double Session)

One in four of your customers’ online searches is a question. Do you know what it takes to have the answers they’re looking for? Between Amazon Echo (Alexa), Google Home, Siri and Windows Cortana, your customers are becoming conditioned to use voice search to find anything at any time. Is your store’s search engine optimization strategy accounting for the extreme growth of natural language search? On the heels of his Retail Boot Camp presentation, Larry Bailin of Single Throw Marketing will...


4:00pm

10 Space-Saving Merchandising Secrets

In this fast-moving session, expert store designer Chris Miller will reveal 10 tried-and-true ideas to increase the selling space in your music retail store. Miller, who has designed more than 3,500 stores worldwide, will cover new and improved fixture ideas, how to add up to 75 feet of wall space to any store and cross-merchandising tips to boost impulse buys. He’ll also identify key selling space and lost space that can be used more effectively and, most of all, share ideas to help...


3:00pm

How to Double Your Lessons by Retaining Your Students

Nothing will stunt the growth of a lesson program faster than low student retention. How can you turn this around? Join Rand and Cindy Cook of NAMM’s 2014 Dealer of the Year, The Candyman Strings & Things, as they share their best practices to keep students coming back lesson after lesson, year after year. The Cooks will reveal new activities, strategies and techniques for engaging students, parents and the community. Walk away with new ideas to create an addictive learning environment;...


3:30pm

Simple Tricks to Improve Your Website

Looking for simple tips and tricks to take your website to new heights? In this exclusive NAMM U interview, Music Villa’s Paul Decker and Dustin Tucker will share their best practices for a successful website with John Mlcynzak of Noteflight. Decker and Tucker, who have one of the most effective (and hippest) online businesses in independent retail, will call upon tried-and-true examples from their own site. They’ll look at everything from proven online content ideas to guidelines for taking...

Session Materials: No downloads for this session.

1:00pm

8 Essential Strategies to Grow Your Lesson Program

Wentworth Music has expanded its lesson program from 90 to nearly 1,000 students—and in a mid-size city of less than 200,000 people. In an essential session for anyone with a music lesson program, NAMM Top 100 finalist Noel Wentworth from Wentworth Music will share the eight strategies that made this possible. He’ll dive into proven ideas for student retention, team development, teacher interviews, lesson do’s and don’ts, and more! Find out how to grow a lesson program, even in challenging...


2:30pm

How to Motivate a Cross-Generational Workforce

At any given time, you’ll have multiple generations—from Gen Z to millennials to baby boomers—working side by side at your store. How are they representing your brand? Are they working together to present the same consistent experience to every customer, every time? In this powerful half-hour, Tim Spicer of Spicer’s Music will host a panel discussion with music retail leaders Sammy Ash of Sam Ash Music, Robert Christie of A & G Central Music and Tim Pratt of Dietze Music. They’ve...


12:30pm

Website Makeover: What I’ve Learned

Does your website need an all-out makeover, or are you just looking for some good ideas to update your site? Tracy Leenman of Musical Innovations, NAMM’s 2015 Dealer of the Year, recently gave her website a successful revamp, and during this session, she’ll lead a panel of music retailers who’ve done the same. Jeremie Murfin and Geoff Metts of Five Star Guitars and Michael Santander of Instrumental Music Center share their best practices for navigating a website makeover, discuss what they...


10:30am

NAMM Top 100 Tactics: Beacock Music

Beacock Music took home NAMM’s Dealer of the Year Award in 2013 for exemplifying best practices in all areas of retail. Five years later, the company has even more successful ideas to share. Join power duo Gayle and Russ Beacock for a roundup of the biggest retail tips, tactics and advice you’ll take in all year. They’ll look at everything from the customer experience to merchandising to operations, covering new ideas and tried-and-true best practices you’ll want to know about—plus underused...


4:30pm

How Norman’s Rare Guitars Mastered YouTube—and You Can, Too!

Norman’s Rare Guitars has more than 50 million views on YouTube and 225,000-plus followers on Instagram. But more importantly, the guitar shop harnesses the power of these online platforms to boost sales, create a global customer base and drive profitability. Here, company owner Norman Harris discusses his strategy for success in an exclusive live interview with digital marketing pioneer Mitch Joel of Mirum Agency. Find out how Norman’s Rare Guitars does it, and get powerful takeaways for...

Session Materials: No downloads for this session.

5:00pm

5 Proven Promotions for Your Lesson Program

You’ve built a successful lesson program, but do you still have room to grow enrollment in your existing space? Could more people in your community know about your program? In this session, Tom Hemphill, retail services expert and Yamaha marketing manager, will reveal new and effective ideas to promote your lesson operation. This will include zero- and low-cost tactics to engage the local market through media, events, social networking, customer referral plays and community partnerships....


Friday, January 26

4:00pm

NAMM YP Presents David Kalt of Reverb.com (Double Session)

At this special session, NAMM Young Professionals (NAMM YP) welcomes guest presenter David Kalt, founder and CEO of Reverb.com. Kalt founded Reverb.com in 2013 when he became frustrated trying to buy and sell guitars online. He began with a simple idea: an online community created and run by musicians where buying and selling musical gear is easy and affordable. Join NAMM YP to hear from Kalt about his career path—and his advice for you. After the session, join NAMM YP in the NAMM Member...


11:00am

What Google Wants (Double Session)

Are your web pages ranking on Google? No? Then join online marketing expert Scott Dailey of Single Throw Marketing and find out why—and what you can do to improve your search engine optimization. This special double session will feature a step-by-step introduction to creating a web page that Google values enough to reward with good rankings. Discover how to get to page one on Google, and how to stay there. Find out how to be found, how to be chosen and how to maximize your SEO efforts.


12:00pm

Retail Web Design: Small Decisions for a Huge Impact

Music retailers and web designers alike can get caught up in the look and functionality of a store’s website, forgetting that every decision made needs to be supported by an underlying business strategy. In this hard-hitting session, Michelle Schulp, website developer and lead designer for Inbound Audio Video, will help you identify your website’s primary call to action and create online experiences that support that goal. Discover how seemingly minor web design choices have a huge impact on...


3:30pm

Employee Vs. Contractor: What You Don’t Know Could Bankrupt You

Do you set the lesson rates for your independent-contractor music teachers? Do you provide the tools for your contracted repair techs? Do you have non-compete agreements for any contract labor at your store? Then you’ll want to be aware of the potential liability from an ever-increasing surge in labor audits. In many cases, classifying music teachers, repair techs and other employees as independent contractors can literally bankrupt your company. In this eye-opening half-hour, music industry...


3:00pm

Powerhouse Store Events That Drive Sales and Traffic

In just five years, Spicer’s Music has gone from startup to go-to store—taking home multiple NAMM Top 100 Awards, including Best Marketing & Sales Promotion in 2017. Here, company owner Tim Spicer will share his award-winning promotional events, how he made them work and how you can, too. Discover tips and tricks on how to plan, coordinate and execute in-store and out-of-store events that unite the community and boost your profits. Get creative event ideas, ranging from open mics to...


1:00pm

New Technologies to Grow Your Lesson Program

YouTube, Skype and smartphones have changed the way people learn music. Is your lesson program keeping up? Join Billy Cuthrell of Progressive Music Center, a successful lessons business with 1,100-plus students weekly. In a follow-up to his popular Summer NAMM session, he’ll show you how you can expand, modernize and update your lessons using video and online learning. Discover how to effectively use YouTube to promote your teachers, create in-house videos that improve the student experience...

Session Materials: No downloads for this session.

2:00pm

Already have a presence on Instagram, YouTube and Facebook? That’s just the beginning. Now find out from the experts how to grow and engage your audience, create excitement with online promotions and use your social profiles to highlight your store’s advantages. Join Ashley Atz of Premier Guitar for a special double session as he moderates this panel of high-profile, savvy marketers, including Dan Abel of Reverb.com, Rob Mestric of Port Mac Guitars, Mike Dias of Ultimate Ears Pro and Lance...


10:30am

How We Got 75 Million Views on YouTube

Andertons Music’s YouTube channel has more than 75 million YouTube views and 315,000 subscribers. Join Lee Anderton for an insightful look at how he did it—and what it means to your business. In this fast-moving presentation, Anderton will show how he grew his store’s YouTube channel, how it’s expanded his customer base and what you can take away from his best practices. Expect helpful online marketing tips, proven advice and more than a few entertaining examples.


12:30pm

The 2018 Store Design Summit

Looking for innovative and effective store design ideas to give your showroom a new look for 2018? Or, how about just some helpful merchandising tips? If so, you’ll want to be at this high-powered panel, hosted by Chris Miller, merchandising guru and head of Pacific Store Designs. He’ll lead a discussion with your successful peers from different parts of music retail, and they’ll share their most powerful design and display concepts. Expect stunning visuals, helpful examples and more than a...


1:30pm

The Top 7 Ways to Increase Online Sales

Are you frustrated by weak sales from your e-commerce store? Do you want your website to increase in-store business? In this session, Peter Malick of Inbound Audio Video will provide a roadmap to generate more revenue online. You’ll leave with seven actionable techniques and technologies to grow your business. Ignore your online presence at your own peril! You can compete in the future of retail, and this is where you’ll get started.


5:00pm

Groove – The No Treble Podcast Live Recording With Billy Sheehan

In the past few years, Groove – The No Treble Podcast has become one of the biggest audio shows for bass players, and is building one of the largest oral histories of the bass in the world. Past guests have included Victor Wooten, Jeff Berlin, Tony Levin, Jerry Jemmott, Michael Manring and many more. In this session, Groove goes live at NAMM! Join Mitch Joel, president of Mirum (a global digital marketing agency), best-selling author and bass enthusiast, as he goes deep with Billy Sheehan,...


Sunday, January 28

1:00pm

The Future of Hit Songwriting: The Next Five Years (Double Session)

Imagine having your very own crystal ball where you could look into the future of the music business. What would the next five years look like? Here, award-winning songwriter and author Thornton Cline and singer-songwriter Bryce Hitchcock will moderate a panel of hit songwriters, producers and artists who’ve navigated the music industry from present to the future. They’ll make their best predictions about the creative side (songwriting, producing and performing), the technical side (software...


11:00am

Next-Level Live Streaming Tips for Musicians (Double Session)

Anyone can Facebook Live, but how can you take your live video streaming to the next level? Join Laura B. Whitmore, marketing expert and partner in the BackStory Events live-streamed interview series, as she share tips and techniques for live streaming success. She’ll show how you can create quality live video content that engages and informs, whether you’re a musician, music retailer or manufacturer. Get tips and ideas to elevate your video and cut through the noise.


2:00pm

Women in Music Sound Off (Double Session)

In this special double session, female leaders share their insight and experience in navigating the music and audio industries. Featuring tips, anecdotes and stories from the front lines, this panel will inspire and energize both men and women—and focus on creating real change and moving forward in relation to gender in the music industry. The session will be hosted by Laura B. Whitmore, founder of the Women’s International Music Network and producer of the She Rocks Awards.


10:30am

Video Marketing That Gets Real Results

Discover video marketing strategies that will absolutely get results. Dan Shinder is the CEO and founder of Drum Talk TV, the premier online platform for the world of drumming—with an average 1.5 million video views weekly on Facebook. In this session, he’ll reveal video marketing strategies you can begin using immediately that will have a tangible impact on your visibility and bottom-line revenue, regardless of whether you’re an artist, producer, retailer or music brand.


3:00pm

Lessons Learned With Dave Audé (Double Session)

Every musician experiences ups and downs on the road of life, but you can avoid big pitfalls by taking other people’s advice to heart. In this session, Chandra Lynn, MI marketing veteran and host of glowliving.com, takes her “Lessons Learned” video interview series to the NAMM Idea Center’s live stage for hard-won wisdom from Dave Audé (www.daveaude.com). Dave is a Grammy-winning producer, DJ, songwriter. He operates his own label Audacious Records, and...


12:00pm

Getting Your Music Featured in the Media’s Digital Age (Double Session)

Getting your music reviewed and featured in today’s digital age is an art form of its own, with media companies consolidating and more indie artists vying for a piece of the pie. Join this panel for an exciting hour of hands-on tips and tricks by renowned music journalist Dan Kimpel, Music Connection magazine’s Hillorie McLarty, seasoned entertainment publicist Hunter Scott and musician Gabrielle Wortman of the band Smoke Season. You’ll hear how each aspect of the machine operates from the...