As businesses continue to bounce back from the great recession, pro AV technology is experiencing a rapid uptick in installations across the country. In fact, an expert at InfoComm International recently stated that the pro AV industry is “growing at a faster rate than the economy.” For value-added resellers (VARs), this growth means an exciting opportunity to gain a toehold in today’s competitive commercial AV marketplace.
But in such a dynamic field, how can a single VAR differentiate itself from the others? It’s all in your knowledge of the technology and how you leverage AV systems to meet each customer’s unique needs.
Here, we take a closer look at some of the best ways to make strategic use of your customer’s pro AV systems:
1. Consider the big picture
Whether your customer is seeking an entire building-wide integrated AV system or a single device, each new job is an opportunity to get your foot in the door of a business. A single project could create a lifelong customer, so consider the big picture: Learn about how the company operates, where its employees are located, and how they work on a day-to-day basis, where collaboration happens, and what some of the company’s current and long-term goals might be.
Armed with this knowledge, look at some of the ways that pro AV technologies could provide better collaboration, cost savings, and other benefits to each customer. Show clients your recommendations, and let them know that you would be happy to work with them in the future. Even if they simply stick to the original plan, you’ll help them to realize the ways in which pro AV systems could benefit various parts of their businesses.
2. Think long-term
When designing and recommending pro AV systems, be sure to consider your customer’s future needs as well. AV technology is always evolving, and you’re in a strong position to serve as a long-term partner for your customers. So think of ways in which additional devices might integrate with each client’s new and legacy AV technology; for example, a video conference system that is currently used to communicate with remote office branches might one day incorporate tablets, smartphones, and even telepresence robots to better serve telecommuting and traveling employees.
3. Stay in the know
The pro AV industry moves quickly, and VARs must stay up with the newest technology releases and trends. Join industry associations, such as InfoComm International, and keep an eye on AV trade publications. Consider partnering with a technology distributor to learn the ropes of the industry and stay up to date with the latest.
Finally, embrace any opportunity to learn from other VARs’ experiences. After all, you’re likely encountering some of the same challenges and questions. When you have the opportunity, reach out to fellow VARs and discover what you might be able to learn from each other.
What are some of the other strategies you would recommend when leveraging pro AV technologies? In what verticals have you had the most success with AV installations?