Cha-ching. Cha-change.

In February of this year, the federal government reported that online retail sales overtook in-store sales for the first time ever. Which begs the question: How do retailers deal with this changing landscape, find and serve customers and keep them coming back? Innovators in this space have answers.

Join us on September 18 for an in-depth discussion with experts in the field.

Doors open at 7:30 a.m. with coffee and networking until 8:00 a.m. when the program begins. Program ends at 9 a.m.

Maine Technology Institute is at 8 Venture Street in Brunswick. Parking on-site is free.

About the moderator:

Hosted by Business editor Carol Coultas. Carol Coultas has been practicing journalism in Maine since the mid-‘80s and focusing on business journalism since 2003. She’s been the business editor at the Press Herald, overseeing an award-winning staff, since 2014.

On the panel:

Steve Pogson, founder and principal of Helm Digital

In 2008, Steve answered the call to live life ​“the way it should be” and moved from New York to Portland, Maine after a brief but powerful weekend visit with his now-wife and business partner, Rebecca. After leading multi-million-dollar strategic technology efforts for some of the world’s largest companies, including Pfizer, Johnson Johnson, Sony, and other Fortune 500s, Steve started First Pier, the first iteration of Helm Digital, in 2009 to help local businesses with their digital needs. In the last ten years, the company has grown from an in-home operation to a full-service digital marketing agency with offices in Portland and Biddeford. As of 2019, First Pier, the total commerce solutions division of Helm Digital, is certified as an official Shopify Expert— the first agency in Maine who meets the criteria for certification.

Brian MacLeod, Associate Director of Customer Service, Wayfair

Brian MacLeod is Wayfair’s Associate Director of Customer Service. In this role, Brian leads Wayfair’s Customer Service Operations in Brunswick and leads multiple strategic initiatives across the organization to further improve Wayfair’s customer experience, employee engagement, and operational excellence. Prior to joining Wayfair in October 2018, Brian was Vice President of Contact Center Operations at Barclays. In that role, he served as the Site Director for the Barclays contact center in Maine and was the business owner of phone, email, and chat servicing operations for the Barclays US Consumer Bank.

Eric Blom, Director of External Communications and Community Relations, Hannaford

Eric Blom is Director of External Communications and Community Relations for Hannaford Supermarkets.  In that role, he collaborates with all aspects of the business to help communicate what makes the grocer distinctive and to navigate an ever-changing retail landscape.  He and his team also oversee the company’s charitable giving, including 12.5 million pounds of donated food in Maine last year, as well as extensive financial contributions to charities focused in the areas of hunger relief, health & wellness, and child & family development.  Prior to joining Hannaford seven years ago, Eric worked in public relations in Greater Portland, representing companies and nonprofits in a wide range of industries, and had a lengthy career as a newspaper reporter and assignment editor.


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