By Lenore Fedow
“The Couch Conference” will hold sessions led by retail jewelers and industry experts via webinar.
New York—With jewelry trade shows and conferences on hold for the foreseeable future, the experts are turning to tech to connect with the industry.

The teams behind client management app Clientbook, marketing and media consultancy agency The Smithee Group, and jewelry website design firm Punchmark are holding “The Couch Conference,” a digital summit designed to share their combined sales, marketing and communications skills with retailers.

The conference will be held Thursday, April 16 and Friday, April 17 from 12 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. EST.

The theme of the event is “reset,” featuring sessions led by retail jewelers and consultants about how to navigate the COVID-19 crisis.

Noted speakers include Caryl Capeci, CEO of Chow Tai Fook North America and president of Hearts on Fire; John Carter, president of the American Gem Society; Tiffany Stevens, CEO, president and general counsel of the Jewelers Vigilance Committee; and Jennifer Markas, executive director of the Women’s Jewelry Association.

Sherry Smith, a National Jeweler columnist and the director of business at Edge Retail Academy, will hold “How to Prepare for Returning Back to Business” on Thursday, and Mariel Diaz, founder and managing director of Accounting for Jewelers LLC, will present a session on active budgeting Friday.

The latter session features a chance to win one free month of budgeting setup and training, including a customized setup of your business budget and one 15-minute one-on-one virtual training meeting per week for four weeks.

“Attendees should view The Couch Conference as a chance to transform your mindset, rethink your business strategy and prepare for what you can do to navigate toward greater success—all from the comfort of your couch,” said Ben Smithee, CEO of The Smithee Group, in a press release announcing the event.

The sessions, which are expected to be 15 to 20 minutes long, will be held via a webinar with a Q&A segment afterward.

The full speaker list and session lineup are available online.

In the spirit of fun, attendees will be nicknamed Couch Potatoes while the speakers will be called Spuds.

“We want it to be fun, casual and different from other available events, while still adding a tremendous amount of value,” said Ryan Blumenthal, vice president of business development of Clientbook and owner of Corinne Jewelers in Toms River, New Jersey.

“Spuds and Buds” happy hour events and giveaways will also be available.

Registration for the conference is $10, with all proceeds going to Feeding America, a network of more than 200 food banks across the U.S.

For more information or to register for the conference, visit The Couch Conference website.

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