Many customers and even solution providers who are new to pro AV often think of the technology as monitors and other digital displays. Although digital signage makes up a significant portion of today’s pro AV industry, with sales for digital displays near $15 billion, the commercial AV market is much more than just monitors. And it holds exciting potential for your customers from a wide range of verticals.
The Goal of Pro AV
Pro AV is a very diverse, highly functional group of technologies that can achieve a great many goals. No matter who your customers are, think of pro AV as a tool for them to improve their business, whether through increased sales, better customer service, improved employee engagement or other means. Really, pro AV technology is simply a modern means of communication, using not only monitors and digital signage, but a whole range of systems and devices.
Let’s take a look at the various types of pro AV technology on the market today:
- Digital signage
- Video walls
- Integrated meeting rooms
- Video conferencing
- Whole-house audio
- Projector systems
- Recording and broadcast technology
Although digital signage and video walls are two of the largest and fastest-growing segments of pro AV, they are really just part of a whole. Today’s pro AV customers are increasingly requiring unified, streamlined AV systems that work together in order to provide a clear, cohesive message. Rather than sticking a single digital screen up on the wall in order to fill a particular need, customers are interested in discovering how multiple systems and devices can work together throughout their entire facility in order to help them reach their goals.
The various pro AV systems and devices listed above require a solution provider to become familiar with many different components. These include the following:
- Digital displays, such as LCD screens and LEDs
- Projectors: a low-cost alternative to digital signage
- Cameras: used to facilitate video conferencing
- Digital whiteboards: collaboration technology that is popular in integrated meeting rooms
- Microphones: used for recording and broadcasting
- Processors and media players: the “brains” of a digital signage or video wall installation
- Mounts and cables, as well as other back-end infrastructure
- Lighting: a complementary component to many pro AV installations
Of course, a solution provider will encounter many other components when working with pro AV technology, which goes to show you how complex the industry has become. Although getting up to speed on pro AV might take some time and effort, the industry offers plenty of opportunity for success, no matter what your target market may be.
With such broad application for pro AV technologies, it’s only natural that customers from a wide range of verticals seek out these systems for their facilities. The public sector is one of the largest pro AV customers in the U.S., with correctional facilities, K–12 schools and college and university campuses representing a large percentage of the government market.
Close behind government customers are corporate offices and headquarters, healthcare facilities and retail shops. Entertainment venues, hospitality locations and houses of worship also help round out the market, which goes to show that pro AV offers potential for solution providers in all areas of the country.
What pro AV systems make up most of your sales? In what vertical do you find the majority of your customers?