Join us on October 1st, 2018, in Dallas, where top industry experts will help female entrepreneurs take their business, product or concept to the next level! Get one-on-one mentoring from the best in the business, who will share important trends and insights, and provide you with invaluable education, support, and guidance. WIT Empowerment Day is made possible in part through the generous support of The Toy Association.
Meet face-to-face in private pitch sessions with Walmart buyers across multiple categories, and Inventor Relations executives from Hasbro, Spin Master, PlayMonster, Jazwares and Basic Fun! for feedback and licensing opportunities. To be eligible for Walmart pitches, your product must be currently sold online or in stores. To qualify for all pitches, your company must be women-owned or women-led.
Meet one-on-one and learn from top industry experts in over 20 areas of specialty at Speed-Mentoring Info Sessions. Get important insights from a Walmart buyer panel, and learn what toy companies are looking for in the “Be An Inventor” panel, with product acquisition executives from Hasbro, Spin Master, Play Monster, Jazwares and Basic Fun! Learn best practices at educational sessions on Social Media/Influencers, Google & Facebook Advertising, and Licensing 101. Click here to view all speakers and industry expert mentors.
Have questions? Click here to get more details about Empowerment Day.
Monday, October 1, 2018
8:00 AM – 5:00 PM
Fall Toy Preview® at Dallas Market Center
This is a free event for WIT members only.
|7:45 AM||Registration Opens|
|8:00 – 8:30 AM||Light Breakfast & Networking|
|8:30 – 8:45 AM||Welcome, Introductions, Overview of Day|
|8:45 – 9:15 AM||Inventor Panel (Open to all Fall Toy Preview registrants)|
|9:15 – 9:45 AM||Walmart Buyer Panel (Open to all Fall Toy Preview registrants)|
|9:45 – 10:00 AM||BREAK|
|10:00 AM – 1:00 PM||Walmart & Toy Company Pitch Sessions // Speed Mentoring Info Sessions|
|1:00 – 2:00 PM||Lunch & Networking – Generously sponsored by Hasbro|
|1:30 PM||Keynote Speaker|
|2:00 – 4:00 PM||Toy Company Pitch Sessions // Hasbro, Spin Master, PlayMonster, Jazwares, Basic Fun!|
|2:15 – 4:15 PM||Educational Sessions
|4:15 – 4:30 PM||BREAK|
|4:30 – 5:00 PM||Sharing, Feedback & Empowerment Day Recap|
|5:30 – 7:30 PM||Cocktails & Connections Networking Event|
Pitch products to Walmart buyers, or products and concepts to top toy companies Hasbro, Spin Master, PlayMonster, Jazwares and Basic Fun! for feedback or licensing deals.
Register early – Limited pitch sessions available!
Get your concept or business off the ground or to the next level while making priceless connections. This is a once-a-year opportunity you cannot afford to miss.
Entrepreneurs, start-ups, small manufacturers, inventors, designers, consultants, freelancers, and any women wanting to take their play product, concept, idea or business to the next level.
Expect to grow your business and your career, both professionally and personally. Join us for an intimate and highly educational day of insights, inspiration, opportunity, and actionable ideas. Participate in Private Pitch Sessions, Speed-Mentoring Info Sessions, Panel Discussions, and unrivaled opportunities to network with industry thought leaders.
Learn the Ropes Webinar Series: WIT EMPOWERMENT DAY 101
Learn everything you need to know to prepare for Empowerment Day. Hosted by Co-Chairs Nancy Zwiers and Deb de Sherbinin.
Date: Monday, June 25, 2018
Time: 12:00pm – 1:00pm EST
Location: Online—Join us from anywhere!
Register for Empowerment Day 101 Webinar
Visit the WIT Empowerment Day FAQ page for additional information.
I learned so much and have a new plan and direction. I’m very grateful to WIT!
This venue afforded me the opportunity to meet with so many different cutting-edge companies. I would never have been able to single-handedly do this myself in a million years! I appreciate all the support WIT has given me to boost my product to new heights. Thank you!
Great job! The women at the helm of Women in Toys are not only making a difference in the industry as a whole, but also empowering women entrepreneurs to achieve tangible goals.
In one single day, entrepreneurs have an opportunity that would take years to gain access to otherwise. The event truly is "empowering" for women on so may levels. Thank you!
It is not easy to take a few days away from the office to go to an industry event, even if the event is designed to help improve and grow ones business. The WIT Empowerment day was very valuable not only because I took away so many new bits of information, it was very inspiring and provided a needed energy boost going into the 4th quarter.
I'd hoped to be able to lend my experience to help the entrepreneurs attending, and found myself completely inspired and energized by the dynamic, creative force of tens of talented women collaborating and encouraging each other. What a gift of a day!
WIT Empowerment Day provides a rare inside glance into the industry and into the minds of experts who are eager to share their knowledge.
Between the opportunity to pitch major retailers, the amount of info learned, and the networking opportunities, WIT Empowerment Day is a must-attend event.
I have delayed launching our craft kits for years using my lack of “know how” as an excuse. In one day, every question was answered. I no longer have an excuse and I was completely energized by the conversations. I will be in a very different place next year when I return.
I am an industry veteran, and this event is so much more than networking. I met some of the most inspirational people whose thoughts and experiences created new ideas and solutions for thoughts I’ve had on the back burner.
It was a really awesome event and an amazing opportunity for talented inventors to connect. The work WIT does is very meaningful, and there is no better opportunity for entrepreneurial, innovative women in toys than to become involved with WIT.
Empowerment Day 2017 was my first WIT experience, and I found it to be a very comfortable space to ask questions and get to know other talented women and men in the industry. I'm incredibly happy with my decisions to join WIT.
WIT provided me with unparalleled access to toy industry leaders and terrific opportunities for networking.
It's a wonderful way to meet fellow entrepreneurs, get industry experts' advice and buyer feedback. To have one-to-one moments with so many experts in one day is just extremely helpful for my business.
Being green to the toy industry and event like empowerment day gives me great encouragement and insight. Thank you WIT for this fantastic opportunity.
The WIT Empowerment Day provides attendees with a rare gift - the assembled industry leaders and experts who are all focused on helping you get the answers, connections and support you need, whether you have an idea, a prototype or an existing business. So powerful!
It provides mentorship, guidance and support to all toy industry professionals, whether just breaking into toys, or those with decades of experience.
Unwind, mix & mingle over delicious food, drinks, and great networking with other Empowerment Day participants and Fall Toy Preview attendees and exhibitors. Takes place immediately after Empowerment Day, and open to all – WIT members and non-members. TICKETS ON SALE NOW.
WIT Learn the Ropes Webinars are generously sponsored by the Nancy Zwiers Empowerment Fund.
Knowledge is power! Join thought leaders to learn about timely topics in the toy, licensing and entertainment industries. Get important insights, best practices, and tips for success. These interactive webinars offer you the chance to ask questions and connect with our expert hosts. Join live or view archived webinars at your leisure.
All live webinars are recorded and available to members at any time in the Learn the Ropes Webinar Archives. You must be logged in and a current WIT member to access the archives.
Recorded on Monday, June 25, 2018
Deb de Sherbinin – Principle, Perk Consulting
Nancy Zwiers – EVP & Global CMO, Spin Master
2018 WIT Empowerment Day 101
Recorded on Tuesday, May 15, 2018
Will Cusey – CPSC Deputy Small Business Ombudsman
Toy Safety 101: Navigating the Complex World of U.S. Product Safety Requirements
Recorded on Tuesday, April 24, 2018
David Becker – President, Blue Plate Media Services
Build a Winning Media Plan to Drive your Retailer Sell In and Consumer
Recorded on Wednesday, November 15, 2017
Matt Phillips – Executive Director, Tier 1
The World’s Product Catalog & How to Leverage It
Recorded on Tuesday, October 18, 2017
Michele Martell, Esq. – Martell Media House
What You Need to Know in a World of Connected Toys and Smart Homes
Recorded on Tuesday, September 12, 2017
Julio Terra – Director of Design & Technology Outreach, Kickstarter
Julie Kerwin – CEO, IAmElemental
Best practices for crafting a great Kickstarter campaign, strategies for community outreach and engagement.
Recorded on Tuesday, June 20, 2017
Deb de Sherbinin – Principal, Perk Consulting
Nancy Zwiers – CMO, Spin Master
Learn how WIT Empowerment Day will help take your product and your business to the next level. Join Empowerment Co-Chairs Nancy Zwiers and Deb de Sherbinin to get critical insider tips and advice on what to expect and how to prepare to make the most of your Empowerment Day experience.
Recorded on Tuesday, April 25, 2017
Rita Street – Executive Producer and Indie Development Artist at Radar Cartoons, LLC.
Rita Street has done what some say is impossible; she’s turned a doll design, a multi-player game and soon, a vinyl toy concept, into TV shows. This busy executive producer and development artist has sold 16 shows in the last ten years, five of which have made it out of development and into production. Her secret? Listening to buyers’ one request—give me a unique hero that kids want to be like or have as their best friend.
Watch this WIT Learn the Ropes Webinar and get the inside scoop on Rita’s development system including:
Recorded on Tuesday, March 28, 2017
Michelle Nelson-Schmidt – Founder, MNS Creative
Kelli Coucheé – Account Director, UBM Global Licensing Group
Learn about Michelle Nelson-Schmidt’s (founder of MNS Creative) journey to developing a successful licensing program. We’ll explore each step of her journey, from her brand’s debut at Licensing Expo and her first licensing deal, to her full-blown licensing program that now extends to products on Walmart shelves. Kelli Coucheé, Account Director with UBM’s Global Licensing Group, will offer insight into Licensing Expo, how she helps emerging brands launch their own licensing programs, and how you can benefit from attending or exhibiting at Licensing Expo.
Recorded on Tuesday, January 31, 2017
Kristen McLean – Director, New Business Development, Nielsen Book | Entertainment
Baby Boomer Generation they are replacing which has implications for the choices they are making for their children on everything from clothing and toys, to digital content and even what they eat for dinner. Come join Nielsen Book’s Director of New Business Development and resident Children’s expert, Kristen McLean, as she shares highlights from Nielsen’s recent Global Millennial research, draws a picture of the key drivers for this generation, and helps WIT members connect the dots so they can optimize their strategies for connecting with this increasingly important consumer group.
Recorded on Wednesday, December 7, 2016
Ashley Mady, WIT President
Mary Kay Russell, WIT Executive Director
Deb de Sherbinin, Empowerment Co-Chair
Amy Good, WIT Staff
Peg Prom, WIT Staff
WIT members around the globe are invited to join us for our Annual Membership Meeting webinar. You’ll meet the WIT Staff and hear from Board Members about new programs and initiatives, and how you can get more involved in WIT.
Recorded on Tuesday, October 25, 2016
Karen Kilpatrick, Vice President of JazWings, Jazwares
Luis Ramos, Associate Counsel of JazWings, Jazwares
Evelyn Fornell, Digital Marketing Specialist of JazWings, Jazwares
Calling all creators, innovators and inventors! Join us for this exciting webinar and learn about an incredible opportunity to partner with global toy and entertainment company, Jazwares, and their incubation arm, JazWings, to launch or build your brand. Meet Vice President, Karen Kilpatrick, and find out about JazWings’ team of passionate industry professionals who support independent creators, and its supportive community of creators, innovators, inventors, and fans who want to have a say in “the next big thing.” Learn how JazWings helps launch and grow new or young brands, from crowdfunding through manufacturing, distribution, content creation and retail placement.
Recorded on September 20, 2016
Ashly Sands, Esq. – Epstein Drangel LLP
Kimberly Klibert, Esq. – Epstein Drangel LLP
Protecting Playtime. An interactive webinar with two attorneys who develop and implement Intellectual Property protection and enforcement strategies for everything inside the toy box, outside the toy box, and for the toy box itself.
Recorded on August 24, 2016
Lisa Shamus – Executive VP of Commonwealth Toy, and CEO, Lisa Shamus and Associates
Kelli Couchee – Account Director, UBM for Licensing Expo and Brand Licensing Europe
The licensing business has changed dramatically over the years, and consumers and manufacturers are much more brand conscious than ever before. Tune in and get professional insights and knowledge on the basics of obtaining a license to use for your product, and to understand how a license agreement works for your product or invention.
Recorded on June 16, 2016
Deb de Sherbinin and Nancy Zwiers – Empowerment Day Co-Chairs
Recorded on January 20, 2016
Nancy Zwiers – CMO, Spin Master
Recorded on October 21, 2015
Stacie Speaker – Stacie Speaker Coaching, Founder
There are many opportunities to do live presentations to internal teams, to clients, or to buyers for your product line. Being in front of a room or even thinking about it can cause unsettling feelings of worry, nervousness and fear or it can even create negative thoughts. Special Guest, Founder of Stacie Speaker Coaching, Stacie Speaker will share 5 must have skills to be a dynamic presenter. Join us to learn how to engage an audience in your next presentation.
Recorded on March 18, 2015
Nancy Zwiers -Founder and CEO, Funosophy, Inc.,
Marty Brochstein – Senior Vice President Industry Relations and Information, LIMA,
Check back soon for next webinar.
Traveling to another city? Tell us where you’re going and we’ll connect you to WIT members worldwide for a coffee, a meal, or just a chance to see a friendly face. The WIT Concierge Service is a members-only benefit, so you will be prompted to log in to your WIT account to submit the Concierge Service form.
Let WIT connect you with expert industry speakers on a wide variety of topics in toys, licensing and entertainment.
Are you an expert speaker in one or more of the topics above? Apply to be a featured in our Speakers’ Bureau.