I sat down recently and talked with Catalyst AV distributor member Brett Neiderman of Tech Source Distributors, about his latest Sony Road Show, why these events surpass expectations, and what business opportunities can arise.
Maureen Jenson: Tech Source Distributors just finished your 2019 Sony Road Show…hosted in two locations, Fairfax Marriott at Fair Oaks, Northern VA and at your own Tech Source facility in Montgomeryville, PA. Was there much variation in turnout per location? Any interesting demographic breakdown on dealers and their customers?
Brett Neiderman: It was listed as a Multi-Vendor Event featuring the new TV line up from Sony. Turn out in Virginia was about 28 dealers. We think it was due to the weather getting nice that week allowing dealers to do outside work. We also heard traffic in the area was crazy as well. We had a much better turn out at our facility. Closer to 50-60. We had a combination of distributor customers and direct dealers.
MJ: Even though it is highlighted as a, “Sony Road Show”, these events are really so much more than just new Sony product announcements, right?
BN: Yes, we had a total of 10 vendors that provided opportunities to interface with them throughout the day. The attending dealers were pleased to have quality one-on-one time to ask questions, learn about new products and solutions, and learn ways to grow their businesses.
MJ: Tell us a little more about some of the business opportunities?
BN: Dealers learned how to differentiate the new Sony TVs in order to spec the right TV for each particular application. They also learned about the importance of installing fiber for future projects as well as how to properly manage HDR content. Networking, surveillance, and quality audio offerings were also discussed as well as offering options in managing smart devices.
MJ: Who were some of the other manufacturers in attendance and what were some of the takeaways from them?
BN: Sony, AVPro Edge, Cleerline, IC Realtime / Clearview, eero, TiVo, Brilliant, Amina, Sonos. Rapid Video Mounts.
MJ: Anything overheard from some of the dealers you would like to share?
BN: They appreciated the opportunity to interface with all vendors and not just sit there and get presentations or infomercials. They got a great understanding of the new Sony TV models. They learned about managing HDR content and getting involved with fiber. They learned ways to build better networks and offer stealth options when it comes to speakers, as well as learning ways to simply access and control a Ring doorbell, Nest thermostat and Sonos system.
MJ: Putting together a roadshow, open house, distributor event is a lot of work. Not all distributors do these, why take on the additional workload and challenges of these events?
BN: It is a great way to have vendors interface with a large group of dealers in one day at one location. It is worth it for dealers to efficiently learn about new products and technologies in one setting. We believe it is a value-add that other distributors do not offer.