1. Has there been a change in the name of the annual convention?
Yes, the convention is now called UNITE. It was formerly the International Christian Retail Show (ICRS). The name change reflects the shifting focus toward unity in the industry between the many parts—publishers, distributors, retailers, authors, artists, filmmakers, and others.
Furthermore, in 2017, the event is being communicated as a convention rather than a trade show. While a trade show is an integral part of the event, other aspects that contribute to networking, training, and idea sharing are extremely important. The event is being called a convention to highlight these aspects that contribute to the industry’s growth and unity beyond sales on a trade floor.
2. What is this year’s theme?
“Envision the Legacy”
UNITE 2017 will be a time of looking forward and building on a foundation in a way that sets up future leaders to continue building.
3. What can I expect if I attend?
At UNITE 2017, media representatives will:
- Receive interviews with leading authors, artists and musicians
- Learn about the current issues affecting the industry as a whole
- Be among the first to see the newest Christian products
With a press badge, you will have access to the trade show floor and CBA-hosted events with high profile leaders.
4. Where do I find out about special events?
Media representatives are invited to attend any of the events listed on the UNITE 2017 public Attendee Schedule.
Booth Happenings, such as author signings or giveaways that take place in a booth will be listed in the UNITE Onsite program onsite. Media are encouraged to participate in Booth Happenings to stay on top of trends and new releases.
Please note that CBA’s policy does not allow for media to receive free food or product at special events unless stated otherwise. Media representatives can choose to purchase meals during Retail Academy, the Global Crossroads Tea, and the Church Bookstore Connection Center Breakfast.
5. Where do I find out who is exhibiting?
See the Exhibit Hall Floor Plan to see exhibitors online.
UNITE Onsite, the printed onsite program, will also include lists of exhibitors.
6. How do I find out what authors will be there?
Sign up to receive the list of Authors/Artists Available for Interviews from Audra Jennings (firstname.lastname@example.org). The list will be emailed regularly prior to UNITE.
You can also view press kits from exhibiting companies and their authors/artists online. Press kits will be added to this page as they are submitted by exhibitors.
7. How is the convention different than in years past?
New Showcase Suites, meeting rooms that extend an exhibitor’s presence from the exhibit floor, give exhibitors new opportunities to create comfortable environments that enhance meetings and presentations. The traditional exhibit floor is managed so that buyers can more quickly navigate their opportunities.
Changes to programming include a session called “Rep Arounds” where exhibitors give 5-minute presentations to tables of retailers, rotating every five minutes. Exhibitors will be able to meet 120 retailers in two hours, and buyers will be quickly introduced to the 12 of the newest products and trends.
Brand new this year is a Big Idea Stage where anyone with a UNITE badge can sign up to share from a stage. Presenters might talk about new trends, the state of the industry, changes that have worked for retailers, etc. Media reps will be able to see the schedule posted near the stage onsite.
8. Can I get new products?
Media reps may request free products directly from exhibitors or exhibitor publicity staff on their own as part of their media or publicity coverage.
Some special events at the convention include product giveaways for retailers. Media are not authorized to accept or take product from any of these events, such as the Rep Around session or other workshops and events with free products and samples designated for retailers. These events and product numbers are planned based on registered attendees or ticket sales.
9. Will I have access to Internet?
Yes. The convention provides a media room with wireless Internet for your use. The media room also has space for interviews and press conferences to meet your needs.
10. When is the Media Room available?
Media Room Hours:
Tues–Thurs, June 27-29: 8 a.m. – 5 p.m.
Friday, June 30: 8 a.m. – 12 p.m.
11. May I have dedicated space for conducting interviews?
Yes, some space for media representatives is available. Contact Audra Jennings (email@example.com) ASAP to reserve dedicated space before it fills up.
12. When and where should I register?
To receive a complimentary press badge, please register pre-show. With a press badge, you will have access to the exhibit floor and CBA-hosted events with high profile leaders. Begin the registration process online. You may be asked to provide evidence of your work or credentials. See our Media Policy for applicable credentials.