Widgets Magazine

Local and Live

Typically “Local, Live” are followed by “Latebreaking” to indicate the prowess of your local news. The idea is to communicate to you, the viewer, that the channel you are watching is in your area, understands your needs/wants/desires, and will deliver it to you as quickly as it comes and in person via the magic of broadcast television.
A local and live AV event works in much the same way. The idea is a distributor, integrator, or trade organization thinks your community could use with some up front, hands on time with the manufacturers with which they associate.
Over the last three or four years, it has been my pleasure to be a part of some these with various organizations. I’ve spoken at InfoComm Connections, AVI Systems regional shows, and recently was at Symco’s two events in Philadelphia and Maryland. AVNation’s editor, Josh Srago, has helped out at Almo’s E4 events talking about IoT and security. Here’s why I see these events as not only necessary but crucial to the industry.

  1. The technology. No, not everyone in the sector can attend InfoComm, ISE, or CEDIA every year. It may be hard to fathom, but some AV professionals have never been to an InfoComm show. These regional events provide the chance to get up close and personal with the technology and people they had missed at a trade show. The manufacturers typically bring along a sampling of what is new and updated. Also, engineers and reps are on hand to answer questions directly from the manufacturer.
  2. The Training. Again, not everyone gets to go to tradeshows or can take the time to travel to a facility. These regional shows provide CTS holders the opportunity to learn in person the latest AV technology, standards, and trends. Most of the time these classes provide CTS RU (renewal units), so you can maintain your CTS certification.
  3. The Networking. Meeting others in your industry is of vital importance to you as a member of the AV community. It helps you build your network and your knowledge bank. You may connect with someone who you can help out, or they provide insight, later on down the line. It also provides the opportunity to put a face to the name and voice of manufacturers you call from time to time.
  4. The Youth. There have been more articles complaining or wringing of hands over the lack of interest by young people in our industry. Young people in general (think back to when you were a teen and early 20-something) that are technologically inclined love to get their hands on things; play with them and see how they work. Regional shows are an excellent opportunity to bring the AV club from your local high school, scout troop, or church to get them introduced into what the audiovisual industry has to offer.

If you aren’t putting on one yourself, network with distributors or reps in your area to find out about what is going on in your town. In St. Louis (where I am) there are a few each year. Some integrators wait until after NAB and InfoComm to make certain they have the latest to show their customers. It’s not a bad way to go. If that doesn’t fit into your, or your clients’, calendar, then look at a time of year that does. Get out there, get local and live, and connect with your customers and show them what great things AV can do for them.
Thanks for taking the time to read my blog. Have a great week.

About Author

Tim Albright is the founder of AVNation and is the driving force behind the AVNation network. He carries the InfoComm CTS, a B.S. from Greenville College and is pursuing an M.S. in Mass Communications from Southern Illinois University at Edwardsville. When not steering the AVNation ship, Tim has spent his career designing systems for churches both large and small, Fortune 500 companies, and education facilities.

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