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Chris Cook

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Top Manufacturers announced new products, provided great exhibits, and important training sessions
 
North Andover, MA – June 16, 2022 – The Mobile Electronics Association, the Industry’s Leading Trade Association, reports a successful year two in Orlando. The first step was establishing the event in 2021. While a launch mid-pandemic was a challenge, it solidified this new KnowledgeFest as an important event for the southeast and beyond. Year two provided growth in every area including the number of exhibitors, education and training sessions, and attendees.
 
The event boasted 60,000 sq. ft. of exhibits, include more than 45 exhibitors representing more than 60 brands, and more than 100 hours of dealer education workshops and vendor sponsored training. Attendance was strong for a second-year event with nearly 900 industry professionals in attendance.
 
“KnowledgeFest Orlando is our newest event, and it is exciting to be celebrate a strong forth event that caters to the Southeast, mid-Atlantic, Northeast, and beyond,” said Chris Cook, President of MEA. “KnowledgeFest now delivers a truly coast-to-coast footprint when combined with our other events in Las Vegas, Indianapolis, and Dallas that combined now serve over 4,500 specialty retailers nationwide.” KnowledgeFestis the only industry event devoted exclusively to the mobile specialist, the installing dealer.
 
For more information and to register for KnowledgeFest, visit KnowledgeFest.org
 
Upcoming KnowledgeFest events:
  • -- August 26-28, 2022 - Dallas, TX
  • -- February 5-7, 2023 – Las Vegas, NV
  • -- May 5-7, 2023 – Orlando, FL
  • -- June 23-25, 2023 – Indianapolis, IN
  • -- August 2023 – Dallas, TX
 
About the Mobile Electronics Association
Mobile Electronics Association (MEA) is a trade association comprised of installing dealers and product vendors dedicated to serving the needs of the mobile electronics specialist industry. MEA owns and produces KnowledgeFest, regional trade-only industry events that combine educational programming and vendor training with a trade show floor. MEA owns and publishes the monthly Mobile Electronics® magazine, which is the industry’s #1 resource, as well as other digital media, including websites and the industry’s e-newsletter Hotwire. MEA provides software and data-driven services to vendors and retailers. Learn more at mobile-electronics.com.
 
Media Contact:
Chris Cook
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978-645-6434
Becomes new home to kick off the year for the Mobile Electronics industry
 
North Andover, MA – March 7, 2022 – The Mobile Electronics Association (MEA) introduced a new location for a KnowledgeFest in Las Vegas marking an important milestone for retuning the industry back to Las Vegas with an exciting and record-breaking event.
 
Held at the South Point Hotel and Convention Center, February 18-20, the event hosted more than 1,500 attendees, 50 exhibitors with over 30 show vehicles and 80,000 sq.ft. of indoor exhibit space. The experience also delivered over 100 hours of informative vendor training and targeted educational workshops that took place over the three-day event.
 
“The Las Vegas event had an exciting energy that we attribute in part to how long it has been since we all were together as an industry,” said Chris Cook, president of MEA. “Looking at the numbers, we were excited going into the event, but the turn-out and attendee engagement was beyond our expectations. Many industry members shared that it felt like a homecoming for our industry.”
 
MEA keeps that momentum going for 2022 as KnowledgeFest goes coast-to-coast with three additional events: Indianapolis, Orlando, and Dallas. Now with four strategically located annual events, Mobile Electronics specialists—both retailers and manufacturers—have recognized the great value of KnowledgeFest for delivering education, manufacturer training, and the opportunity to network while reviewing the latest technologies.
 
“Las Vegas exhibitors expressed satisfaction with the event as nearly all signed up for KnowledgeFest Las Vegas for 2023.” said Chris Cook, president of MEA. “Their show of support coupled with the great reviews from the attendees solidifies Las Vegas as a new home for KnowledgeFest.”
 
The event closed Sunday evening with the Mobile Electronics Industry Awards hosted by the Mobile Electronics® Association and Sponsored by new MEA partner, SNAP Finance. Top awards went to Marty Adamschek - Installer of the Year, Titan Motoring - Retailer of the Year, Robert Kowatch - Sales Pro of the Year, and HKI USA - Vendor of the Year. The full list of winners can be found at MEIndustryAwards.com.
 
MEA thanks its partners and sponsors for their help in supporting the Las Vegas event and the Mobile Electronics industry.
 
Upcoming KnowledgeFest events:
• April 1-3, 2022 – Indianapolis, IN
• June 10-12, 2022 – Orlando, FL
• August 26-28, 2022 – Dallas, TX
• February 3-5, 2023 – Las Vegas, NV
 
About the Mobile Electronics Association
Mobile Electronics Association (MEA) is a trade association comprised of installing dealers and product vendors dedicated to serving the needs of the mobile electronics specialist industry. MEA owns and produces KnowledgeFest, regional trade-only industry events that combine educational programming and vendor training with a trade show floor. MEA owns and publishes the monthly Mobile Electronics® magazine, which is the industry’s #1 resource, as well as other digital media, including websites and the industry’s e-newsletter Hotwire. MEA provides software and data-driven services to vendors and retailers. Learn more at mobile-electronics.com.
 
Media Contact:
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978-645-6434
Strong Attendance Expected for KnowledgeFest™Las Vegas
State of Nevada joins New York and California removing the mask mandate
 
NORTH ANDOVER, MASS., February 11, 2022 — The Mobile Electronics Association (MEA)reported today that advance registrations indicate a much higher than expected attendance at next week’s KnowledgeFest Vegas event. This is the first KnowledgeFest to be held in Las Vegas which will now host the Mobile Electronics Industry Awards, as retailers and vendors are gearing up and looking forward to meeting in person again.
 
Yesterday, Nevada’s governor announced that masks are no longer required for in-door events, joining New York, California, and most of the rest of the country, who have either removed the requirement or announced a plan to in the near future. The Nevada announcement is effective immediately and supported by the South Point Hotel and Casino. This will allow KnowledgeFest Vegas attendees to have the option to wear a mask or not.
 
 
“These are certainly unique times where companies recognize that business continues and the mobile electronics industry needs to come together to support them” stated Chris Cook, MEA President. “The show must go on and the record number of attendees are being heard loud and clear”. MEA now projects attendance to reach 1,500 which would be a record for a first-year new venue. Previous KnowledgeFest locations included Dallas, Indianapolis, Long Beach, and Orlando.  
 

KnowledgeFest Vegas will be a three-day event featuring hundreds of hours of education utilizing three workshop tracks (Owner & Manager -- Sales & Marketing -- Technician & Fabricator), manufacturer specific training sessions, and over 80,000 square feet of exhibitor space with more than 50 booths, capped off with an evening of celebration and entertainment as the industry recognizes the best-of-the-best at the Mobile Electronics Industry Awards.

 

Discount rooms are still available at the beautiful South Point Hotel and Casino (located on the Las Vegas Boulevard about five miles from Mandalay Bay) and online advance registration, along with schedule and details, is available at KnowledgeFest.com.    

 

About the Mobile Electronics Association
Mobile Electronics Association (MEA) is a trade association comprised of installing dealers and product vendors dedicated to serving the needs of the mobile electronics specialist industry. MEA owns and produces KnowledgeFest™, regional trade-only industry events that combine educational programming and vendor training with a trade show floor. MEA owns and publishes the monthly Mobile Electronics® magazine, which is the industry’s #1 resource, as well as other digital media, including websites and the industry’s e-newsletter Hotwire. MEA provides software and data-driven services to vendors and retailers. Learn more at mobile-electronics.com.

 

Media Contact:

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978-645-6434

 

Upcoming KnowledgeFest events:

  • February 18-20, 2022 – Las Vegas, NV
  • April 1-3, 2022 - Indianapolis, IN
  • June 10-12, 2022 - Orlando, FL
  • August 26-28, 2022 – Dallas, TX


# # #

DD Audio - Hiring for Regional Sales Management and Account Management
 
Regional Sales Manager - Will work with an Account Manager to oversee sales efforts of a single brand, to brick and mortar retail partners, in an assigned region. Qualified candidates must be self-motivated, able to office in Oklahoma City, OK and possess a strong technical understanding and knowledge of the mobile audio industry.  3-5 years of consumer electronics sales experience is preferred. Will require some travel.
 
Account Manager - Will work with oversight from a Regional Sales Manager to focus sales efforts of a single brand, to brick and mortar retail partners, in an assigned region. Qualified candidates must be self-motivated, able to office in Oklahoma City, OK and possess a strong technical understanding and knowledge of the mobile audio industry.  3-5 years of consumer electronics sales experience is preferred. 
 
For more information visit: https://ddaudio.com/careers/

 

If you are interested in a long-term career opportunity with a world class company located in South Florida our client is a leader in audio equipment and technology, and offers career growth, stability and excellent compensation with a full benefit package. Relocation assistance provided for candidates outside of the local area.
 
If you are looking  to work for an established company, an employer of choice, offering an excellent work environment designed for success and a 4-day work week with most weekends to enjoy everything Florida has to offer, then this unique opportunity might be the perfect career change for you.
 
This is an excellent opportunity for someone with extensive background and experience in Automotive or Marine Electronics installation.
 
The Ideal candidate would possess most of the following skill sets and knowledge:

-Strong troubleshooting skills

-Solid technical background in acoustics, audio equipment, system design and system integration

-OEM audio integration

-Acoustic measurements and system tuning

-Enclosure design

-Metal Fabrication and Fiberglass, use of woodworking tools

-Excellent computer skills (SolidWorks experience a plus)

-MECP, ABYC, & NMEA Certifications a plus

-Strong verbal and written communication skills

-Bilingual (Spanish) a plus

 

If you believe you qualify, have the experience and are passionate about making a difference in the Audio Electronics Industry, please apply immediately by contacting Rachael Lewington at (954) 376-1161, or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. to discuss this excellent opportunity. 
01 Dec

Distinctive Car Toyz Featured on Real World Retail

Wednesday, 01 December 2021
No Stone Unturned

In the quest to bring every client’s dreams to fruition, Distinctive Car Toyz has built its business from the ground up and expanded to offer everything from new cars to custom stereo systems.
 
Words by Rosa Sophia
 
In 1993, Distinctive Car Toyz in Egg Harbor, New Jersey, began with a focus on dealership work, offering gold plating and wood dash trims. Owner James Lin started the business out of the trunk of his 1992 Lexus. After two years, he moved into a two-bay garage, then to a larger location. The business grew substantially before being featured on the cover of Mobile Electronics magazine in 2013. “Then we found a spot a half a mile away from our last location,” Lin said, noting that they built from the ground up, beginning March 2, 2020, while still running the business out of the old location. “We finished the new building in eight months when everyone said it would take 18. We moved in at the end of December and had our grand opening on January 25, 2021.” Lin and his shop foreman, Eric Laskosky, managed the project themselves during the COVID-19 shutdown. The business now has a total of 10,000 square feet, with 8,000 for the garage and 2,000 set aside for the showroom. The shop’s hours are nine a.m. to seven p.m., giving those who work until five a chance to pick up their cars in the evening. The staff of 30 includes a shuttle driver who will take customers home or to work after they drop off their vehicles.
The staff, he said, has grown together for the most part. The shop’s full-time tinter attended the Tint School in Florida. “When I do the hiring, I tend to recruit what’s out there,” he said. “They come prepared. There isn’t a whole lot of training needed when you hire experienced help.”
 
The business has a team of specialized technicians: Some handle only wheels and tires, and one technician focuses on vehicle lifts, engine swaps and transmissions. The shop offers an extensive list of services, everything from oil changes to car audio, in an effort to meet clients’ needs. And while it began by servicing dealerships, Distinctive Car Toyz has become a dealership, as well. Lin said this aspect of the business became...Read the rest of the story CLICK HERE.
17 Nov

What's Happening - Oasis in the Desert

Wednesday, 17 November 2021
With a focus on revitalizing the Industry Awards, the yearly ceremony has been moved from Dallas to Las Vegas. Past award winners share their perspectives on an evolving tradition.
 
Words by Rosa Sophia
 
For the last three years, KnowledgeFest has held an event in Long Beach, Calif. But on February 18-20, 2022, the show and the Industry Awards will take place in Las Vegas, Nev. The choice was made to revitalize the awards ceremony and processes, and to make the awards more reflective of a full year of recognition.
 
Elias Ventura, who was awarded 2016-2017 Sales Pro of the Year and now works as the Mid-Atlantic territory manager for SounDigital and Ground Zero, said the move is a welcome one. “I think a change of scenery and structure is necessary, especially with all the present chaos,” he explained. “Having something to look forward to is important. Vegas is a perfect place for the show, and I think a little shift was needed.”
 
Past Winners Work to Refresh the Industry Awards
Members of the Industry Awards committee—including Ventura—meet to “make sure the process is very fair, and that we move forward in a modern way of doing things,” according to Jeff Smith, director of training at AAMP Global.
He added that it’s important to.... Read the rest of the story HERE.
 
 
kfest 739x
 
Shop Owners Teach Industry Essentials at KnowledgeFest
 
Word by Laura Kemmerer
 
Known for hosting some of the highest quality education in the mobile electronics industry, KnowledgeFest recently marked a return to in-person classes and networking opportunities. At the event, Adam Devine of Devine Concepts in Naples, Fla., and Brandon Green of The Car Audio Shop in High Ridge, Mo., both drew on their own expertise and taught “Marine Fabrication Best Practices” and “The 12-Volt Insight.”
Devine said he felt the turnout at the debut Orlando show was excellent, “especially being post pandemic. People are still worrying about going to events. The turnout has been great, the interactions have been great and the classes are phenomenal. I’ve seen more interaction during the classes instead of just downloading the content and information and not participating,” he added.
 
Online education options, though helpful due to pandemic restrictions, had lower rates of engagement from students. According to Devine, in-person learning facilitates more participation and gets attendees to ask more questions. In contrast with few questions asked in virtual trainings, Devine and Green had over 30 inquiries after their first presentation. The two also closed out the weekend co-teaching “The 12-Volt Insight,” an owner-manager class. Devine noted that his store in Naples focuses on high-end luxury vehicles, and his perspective might not be relevant to everyone.
 
“Understanding those differences and what you should have in terms of product selection could be different from Naples to Minnesota to everywhere else,” Devine said.
What should remain the same, however, is how you interact with your clients. Emphasis on customer service, excellent solutions and getting an understanding of your customer’s lifestyle, in order to better understand their needs, should all be part of the same core practice. With an additional emphasis on selling benefits rather than features, customers are sure to have a positive experience.
 
“You’re not going to sell a mom who has two kids and makes long trips on the features of rear-seat entertainment, you’re going to sell them on the fact that it’s the experience—the kids in the backseat are going to be quiet and you’re going to have a nice relaxing ride,” he explained.... Read the rest of the story HERE.
 
kfest 739x
28 Sep

What's Happening - The Starting Line

Tuesday, 28 September 2021
Fulfilling educational sessions and new beginnings in Orlando marked the return to in-person KnowledgeFest events, while the industry anticipates a transformative year ahead.
 
Words by Rosa Sophia
 
Over half of all attendees at KnowledgeFest Orlando, June 25-27, reported that it was their very first time attending, according to a survey by Mobile Electronics Association. Orlando—known as “the City Beautiful”—hosted the debut KnowledgeFest, and those hailing from Florida were excited to have the show in their own “backyard.”
 
Dave Elkin of DOW Technologies said it was a short drive from the company’s corporate headquarters in Tampa. “We decided to tell our ‘local’ story [to attendees],” he said, adding, “It was so exciting to look around the booth and see all the vehicles owned by DOW employees.” After all, he added, the company’s motto “‘We are Technology’ is something we live by every day.”
 
 
MMats Pro Audio, which manufactures most of its audio equipment in Jupiter, Fla., made the drive to Orlando for KnowledgeFest. For regional sales manager Mike Hall, Friday’s show floor experience was most memorable, with plenty of interaction with knowledgeable dealers. Hall said the past year has been a very busy one for the company, adding that MMats sold in the first three months of the year what would’ve normally taken nine months to sell.
“This was our third national event of the year,” he added. “While some might say attendance was low, we felt like those who did attend were very important to our success.”
 
KnowledgeFest as a Return to In-Person Networking
Professionals from across the industry agreed that getting to see everyone in person again was a highlight of the show. Elkin said DOW Technologies had very positive interactions with key dealers and core vendors, adding, “Everyone has been through a lot over the past 16 months. To be able to finally get back together with so many familiar faces was fantastic.”
 
He gave a nod to his company’s sales team, underscoring the importance of building value and deepening relationships, and said he feels the industry will begin to see higher levels of attendance at industry events in the coming year.
“I think some folks were just too busy, so they couldn’t get out yet, but I also think there were dealers who wanted to see how this show went before committing or planning to attend themselves,” he said, agreeing with Hall that although attendance seemed light, they were able to visit with a lot of dealers. One of the challenges, though, is encouraging people to .... Read the rest of the story HERE.
 
kfest 739x

Are you ready to take your knowledge and experience in vehicle technology and  mobile electronics installation to the next level?  InstallerNet has an immediate need for an in-house Tech Support & Training Manager which could be your next career move.  This full time position in North Andover, MA (Relocation assistance for the right cadidate) and is a Key Staff position within InstallerNet where you will manage the technical side of all Client Programs for the Company.   This includes managing Tech Support along with supporting Customer Service as well as our National Network of installers.  You will be the key interface within the Company for our Client’s technology contacts with direct support and documentation on installing their technology products.  We’re looking for at least 7 years of experience in the industry, installing and/or selling mobile electronics with an active installation retailer.

InstallerNet creates National Programs for electronics installations for its clients and partners. Our nationwide network of InstallerNet Member installers (over 2,000 locations) perform installations for all types of mobile electronics products, sold through retail and e-tail to consumers, as well as commercial fleet programs for installing in large quantities.

You must have at least 7 years of hands-on electronics installation in vehicles, while also being an above average communicator with your peers. You must be confident and capable in talking with mobile electronics installers to support them and answer their technical questions. You must have above average written skills to create and maintain online and published manuals, support documentation and training. You will, as needed, run small online webinars to train and educate groups of installers. You will also attend industry trade shows both to help deliver our technical content as well as stay up on the industry trends and products.

Day to Day work includes:

Developing installation techniques. Creating, Updating/Maintaining MS Word documents on product installations in vehicles - and/or using Web Tools.

Answering calls from Installers requiring technical support.

Answering internal call center employee questions as their go-to technical leader.

Creating and updating, sorting MS Excel spreadsheets.

Handling problem escalations involving issues with installations or vehicle issues resulting from such installs.

Occasional VIP installs - may include travel - and support installs at or near trade shows. But this position is more of an office/desk/phone position that an under-the-dash position.

 

This position offers salary matched to experience along with Full Time Health, Dental, Disability, Life and 401K benefits. 

 

Please email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. with your interest and CV/resume.

The UK’s Coolest Automobile Manufacturer Chooses Audiofrog Loudspeakers

Pasadena, CA., August 25, 2021 – Audiofrog, producer of high-end speakers for cars, commercial applications and live music venues, will now provide speakers for the UK’s Morgan Motor Company through its exclusive UK partner, Skipton Car Radio. The system features a full complement of GS Series speakers and a GS8ND2 subwoofer.

“This is dreamy,” said Andy Wehmeyer, Audiforog’s president. “When I was a kid in Texas, a family friend had 1962 4/4 in his garage that he brought home after an overseas military assignment, and I thought it was the coolest car I had ever seen. Since then, I’ve been fascinated by Morgan’s attention to modernity while maintaining the original craftsmanship and the look and feel of a classic British roadster. Peter at Skipton Car Radio has done a fabulous job of fitting GS speakers into Morgan’s unique interior. What a cool opportunity for us at Audiofrog.”

“We are incredibly proud to announce that Morgan Motor Company are now offering a complete Audiofrog audio upgrade on all new vehicles as a factory option,” remarked Peter Preston of Skipton Car Radio. “We researched the vehicles in detail and Audiofrog was the only choice due to their innovative fitting kits that were perfect for these challenging vehicles. Of course, they sound great, too. We believe this will really help Audiofrog introduce the brand to new customers.”

The optional system upgrade includes Audiofrog’s GS10, GS25, GS60 and GS8ND2 subwoofer.

Famous the world over for its unique blend of craft, heritage and pure driving experience, the Morgan Motor Company has been manufacturing quintessentially British vehicles in Malvern, UK, for more than 110 years.

www.audiofrog.com
www.morgan-motor.com

MEA Projecting Strong Attendance at KnowledgeFest™
 
Registrations trending above last three-year average
 
North Andover, MA – August 6, 2021 – The Mobile Electronics Association (MEA), owner and producer of KnowledgeFest events, stated that with 20 days to go, the Dallas event registrations have reached levels comparable with attendance over the last three years events as the industry comes together in Dallas. The Omni (host hotel for the event) has reported that its room block is now sold-out, and producers are looking into additional hotel accommodations for attendees.
 
Despite the post-pandemic inventory shortage and labor challenges, more than 50 brands will be represented from manufacturers that are exhibiting to show their support to dealers and providing product information and training.
The show producers continue to work with the City of Dallas, Convention Center, and Host Hotel to assure a successful and safe event. Mask’s will not be required but recommended in public places if not vaccinated.
 
The Dallas event will include more than 100 hours of dealer education workshops and vendor sponsored training devoted exclusively to the mobile specialist, the installing dealer.
 
For more information and to register for KnowledgeFest, visit KnowledgeFest.org
 
Upcoming KnowledgeFest events:
2021
August 27-29, 2021 - Dallas, TX
October 8-10, 2021 - Indianapolis, IN
 
2022
February 18-20, 2022 – Las Vegas, NV
April 1-3, 2022 – Indianapolis, IN
June 10-12, 2022 – Orlando, FL
August 26-28, 2022 – Dallas, TX
 
About the Mobile Electronics Association
Mobile Electronics Association (MEA) is a trade association comprised of installing dealers and product vendors dedicated to serving the needs of the mobile electronics specialist industry. MEA owns and produces KnowledgeFest, regional trade-only industry events that combine educational programming and vendor training with a trade show floor. MEA owns and publishes the monthly Mobile Electronics® magazine, which is the industry’s #1 resource, as well as other digital media, including websites and the industry’s e-newsletter Hotwire. MEA provides software and data-driven services to vendors and retailers. Learn more at mobile-electronics.com.
 
Media Contact:
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
978-645-6434
Strategy & Tactics: Business Planning Basics
 
Facing pitfalls? Here are 5 ways retailers can learn to be more prepared for unexpected twists and turns in both life and business.
 
Words by Rosa Sophia
 
When preparing for the future, retailers agree it’s best to have a plan—and a backup plan in case the first option doesn’t work out. James P. Smith of A.C.T. Audio in Vernon, Conn. said it’s best not to look at pitfalls in life as failures. “Look at it as a lesson,” he said, noting that it’s important to sit down and extract knowledge from the experience. “Then it becomes more of a success because you know what not to do in the future. You can analyze your mistakes and see how you need to change your mindset or your behavior—whatever the situation is—to keep moving forward.” Smith said when he makes a mistake, he uses it as an opportunity to learn, to keep something similar from happening in the future.
 
The debut KnowledgeFest Orlando took place June 25-27, and on Sunday, Smith taught his first class, called “Getting Out of Your Own Way: From Technician to CEO.” In it, he covered understanding core values, creating standard operating procedures and how best to delegate tasks. Smith detailed how he went from partnering in a business in 2011 to purchasing A.C.T. Audio in 2019, and what he learned along the way. He asked attendees to consider whether... read the rest by [Clicking Here]
 
Read the latest issue of Mobile Electronics magazine [Click Here]
 
 

[Read] the on the digital platform for Mobile Electronics magazine 


 
Joining the Club
 
There are many different ways to get involved in the industry and network with fellow professionals. Let’s explore them. Which option works best for you?
 
Clubs, groups and associations are either exclusive, inclusive or both. Before you consider joining one, you should ask yourself a few questions, such as: What do you hope to get out of being a member? What are you able to contribute? Does the group conflict with other groups you’re involved in? Do the rules make sense and are you willing to abide by those rules? And lastly, why do you want to be part of the group? You’re probably seeking information, or even a sense of belonging. If you find value in it, then join and participate.
 
Types of Organizations and How to Navigate Them
Group leaders will state the purpose of the group and control the direction of the content. For example, a Facebook group will usually have a stated purpose and rules of engagement. Most groups allow for free exchange of information with little restrictions. Most will ask members to refrain from advertising or promoting themselves, as this does little to further the overall purpose. When groups allow this type of posting, the content often devolves and loses its intended purpose.
 
One reason for the popularity of social media groups is the ease of engagement. Most are free to join and only require you to meet certain qualifications. Once connected, you can share your thoughts, comment on posts and offer assistance to other members.
 
Vendor Groups and Industry Associations
Vendor groups are usually private Facebook groups, but some vendors offer them with special login credentials on the company’s website. These groups are almost always exclusive to customers of the vendor, and meant to be used to obtain and share information and find technical support. This type of group can be very helpful. Beyond that, dealer-to-dealer communication can be very valuable as it relates to a specific product or installation technique.
 
Trade associations in our industry provide a big tent environment allowing for many smaller groups to be formed. Some associations provide services to members in areas specific to their business interests. An association may also have several social groups allowing members to connect on specific topics.
 
Associations tend to be inclusive because they allow for many people in various areas of the field to be represented. Guidelines are set for membership types, and usually the member must demonstrate affiliation to the trade. This generally includes a code of ethics required to maintain good standing within the association.
 
Consider Exploring Cross-Industry Groups
If you are looking for a way to connect with others, look for opportunities to become involved in cross-industry groups. These groups usually exist in associations and are made up of participants from various associations in related industries. Becoming involved in this type of group will expose you to other industries and experiences. If the opportunity arises, seize it. It should be considered high-value.
 
Mingling With the Group
 
Joining up? Consider what’s best for you—an inclusive or exclusive setting, and how to decide.
An exclusive group has certain rules or requirements. There’s nothing wrong with this, but you should know before attempting to join that you might not be approved for membership. Groups like this are usually meant for a very specific field or interest. On the other hand, an inclusive group allows many to join regardless of affiliation with other groups. They tend to focus on greater participation, allowing for varied thoughts and opinions. Both group types serve a purpose.
 
Groups Can Be Both Inclusive and Exclusive
An association tends to recruit from a larger base, allowing it to be considered inclusive of all interests. Once you are a member, there may be groups within the association that are both inclusive and exclusive. The difference is that there’s usually a path for any member meeting certain criteria to become involved in an exclusive part of the association. For example, the association may have a leadership board that requires the member to meet certain criteria, and either be nominated or appointed to serve for a specific period.
 
Deciding Where You Belong
It’s easy enough to just join everything that interests you. That said, go back to the first part of this article and review what you want to get out of your association with specific groups. Are you looking for some precise information? Maybe you just want a sense of belonging. That’s reason enough to join and network with others. If you find value, then join and participate. To really get the most out of it, make sure you take the time to participate in any in-person events that others from the group might attend. Face-to-face networking tends to build better relationships, thus providing you with a longer-lasting and more fruitful experience.
 
Here’s What the Best Groups Have in Common
A group that helps you grow both personally and professionally will invite you to express your thoughts or opinions without consequences. Members will debate the issues and share relevant and helpful information. They won’t focus on who’s the best, or who’s not so good. They will lift up rather than tear down others. Good leadership in any group will help focus on your personal growth as an individual. If you feel the group lacks quality leadership, don’t shy away from speaking up. You never know—you might be the leader the group is looking for.
 
Yes, some groups may compete for your attention and membership. There’s nothing wrong with that, but there is a problem with a group that shuns others who might not be like them. Don’t get caught up in this type of group. It can be harmful to both you and others. Look for groups that encourage you to be yourself. Over time, you should notice the groups that don’t shun others are the ones which allow you to be a member.
 
Need Help Finding the Right Place for You?
I know many leaders with integrity in our industry. If you’re looking for a good group, ask your sales reps, your vendors, and even the Mobile Electronics Association. We will be glad to help point you in the right direction. And if you can make the journey, any KnowledgeFest event will put you in front of other likeminded professionals in our industry who can point you to great groups that will help you grow.
 
Read the latest issue of Mobile Electronics magazine [Click Here]
Sketching the Future
 
At the start of the pandemic, one-man shop Seismic Autosound seized the opportunity to change course in search of ideal clients and a better work-life balance.
 
Words by Rosa Sophia
 
Seismic Autosound has partnered with Custom Mobile Electronics in Novato, Calif., merging the two businesses into one. Bryon Jankow, owner of Seismic Autosound, and Marty Barry of Custom Mobile Electronics discussed their respective situations and arrived at the same conclusion: The one-man shop approach wasn’t working for either of them anymore, and they wanted a better work-life balance. Becoming business partners made the most sense.
“I was working alone. So was he. It was 70 to 80 hours a week, non-stop, and that takes its toll after a while,” Jankow said. “Marty’s shop already had the type of clients I wanted to attract. It was a no-brainer for us to team up and take stress off each other, and move forward from there.”
 
Seismic Autosound moved from Concord to Novato, to Barry’s already-established location, and together, they expanded to about 4,000 square feet. Now, the shop is open five days a week and they both have time to enjoy a personal life again.
Jankow recalled the Bay Area going into lockdown for COVID-19 just as his lease ran out.
 
The two have been business partners for just under a year, but they’ve kept their respective shop names the same. “For now, it’s just been about bringing everything together,” he said. “We’re trying to...Read the rest of the story CLICK HERE.
 
 
June 30, 2020 - North Andover, Mass. - The Mobile Electronics Association is proud to present interviews and insights with leaders in the Mobile Electronics Industry. Chris Cook, MEA President, conducted an interviewed David Prinz, CEO of GoFast Solutions. He shared his insights and perspective as it relates to GoFast Solutions and the future of the mobile electronics industry.
 
If you missed it, no worries. you can watch or listen by clicking on the link below:
 
 

Read the Article:

In the Groove
David Prinz uses his drive and passion to make every lap count for GoFast Solutions.
 
Words by Jamie Sorcher
 
It’s a classic formula: A high school kid with a passion for car audio gets a job at a stereo shop and, years later, opens a successful business of their own. It’s exactly what happened for David Prinz, the CEO of Middletown, Conn.-based GoFast Solutions. He recalled the makeshift stereo system in his pickup truck, and how he used to drive to a local business—the Sound Company—and talk with the guys who worked there.
 
“I asked what it took to get a job there as an installer,” he said. “They told me I needed a general understanding of electronics, so I went to Gateway Community Technical College right after high school and did a one-year certificate program in electronic technology.” He ultimately got the job and became a salesperson and an installer. From there, he went to....[Click Here to Continue Reading]
 
 
 
South Point Hotel and Casino to host KnowledgeFest and the Industry Awards
 
North Andover, MA (June 21, 2021) – The Mobile Electronics Association (MEA) announces a new location for KnowledgeFest™ West to be held at the South Point Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas on February 18-20, 2022. For the past three years KnowledgeFest West was held in Long Beach California where attendance grew each year while attracting more retailers from outside the typical 300-mile radius.
 
“Although Long Beach exceeded our expectations as our fastest growing KnowledgeFest event, Las Vegas is a more convenient destination for accommodating retailers traveling from many locations on the West coast and from Canada” said MEA President, Chris Cook.
 
KnowledgeFest Las Vegas will kick off the 2022 Education and Trade-Show line up which includes Indianapolis (April 1-3), Orlando (June 10-12) and in Dallas (August 26-28). Now with four events across the country, KnowledgeFest solidifies its position as THE Mobile Electronics industry’s educational venue featuring member exhibitors showcasing their latest products and technology for attending retailers.  
 
Adding to the excitement, the winners of the 2021 Mobile Electronics® Industry Awards will be honored at the new Las Vegas event. “The Industry Awards will be better aligned to celebrate a full year of recognition.” stated Cook. “The mobile electronics industry will celebrate those that exemplify the highest standards of professionalism, business ethics, service, and expertise.”
 
KnowledgeFest 2022 will showcase more than 100 exhibitors, representing over 125 brands. The education and training will represent 500+ hours of Owner/Sales/Installer Workshops and Vendor Training sessions. It will attract more than 6,000 attendees throughout the year seeking to learn more about their profession, networking with like-minded industry professionals, and discovering new technologies, products, and services from exhibitors.
 
“With over 25 years of serving the Mobile Electronics Industry, KnowledgeFest is established as the most respected educational event of our time.” stated MEA Chairman, Tony Frangiosa. “MEA and the mobile electronics industry are set to succeed well into the future as retailers coast-to-coast take advantage of this valuable experience.”
 
For more information and to register for KnowledgeFest, visit KnowledgeFest.org
 
Media Contact:
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978-645-6434
[Read] the on the digital platform for Mobile Electronics magazine  
 

 
Face to Face
 
It’s time to reopen KnowledgeFest
 
The sign on the door says we’re open for business. As schools, amusement parks, and, yes, trade shows and conferences reopen, we are excited to begin returning to normal. This June 25th KnowledgeFest will be starting up again in Orlando, Florida. This will be our first event in the Sunshine State. At the time of the event, it will have been over 15 months since we were able to meet in person back in Long Beach, California in February of 2020. It has been a long, hard road for many of us, and for a myriad of reasons.
 
Learning From the Challenges of the Past Year
As an association, we better understand key facets of the industry and how best to provide assistance in times of uncertainty. I can vividly remember the last in-person events I took part in. In February 2020, I was in Germany as a presenter at the Car Media Convention (CMC). In March, I was in the United States as an exhibitor, and I also had the privilege of presenting the keynote at the GoFast Solutions Mobile Expo. Each was at the very beginning of the pandemic.
 
Here’s What to Expect at KnowledgeFest Orlando
Since so many on social media have been wondering what to expect, I thought it would be a good idea to provide perspective on what we’re planning for KnowledgeFest Orlando. The first question: “Do we have to wear masks?” At the time of this writing, the answer is yes—you will have to wear a mask in the trade show floor and in the education and training sessions.
 
While Florida is a mask-free state, we are taking an abundance of caution knowing that many will be traveling from all over the country. Should guidance change prior to the event, we’ll comply with the prevailing wisdom from federal, state, and local ordinances. That said, much of the time you’re in Florida, mask-wearing will be up to your individual preference. The event will have high standards of clean, safe environments designed to provide the highest level of safety for you as the attendee. All the information you need can be found at KnowledgeFest.org/register, then look for “[Click Here] for Information on what to expect at the Orlando Event.” One very important thing to expect is the best live learning experience in the industry and a lot of fun networking with exhibitors and others in the industry.
 
What’s New?
This event will be a bit different from past events. First, it’s in Orlando! It’s a great place to take the family for vacation or connect face-to-face with friends. As an industry, we have a brave history of being able to adapt to new things. This will be a new thing for many of you who have not attended a KnowledgeFest event. To date, Orlando has been our most anticipated event. We will have an excellent line-up of presenters for both the education sessions and the manufacturer trainings. Expect to come home from the event with knowledge and wisdom that will improve your business.
 
Join Us in June
If you are in the mobile electronics industry, take this as an open invitation to join us in Orlando, June 25th to 27th for networking, discovery and just plain fun! If you miss it, remember you’ll have two more chances this year. One in Dallas, August 27th to 29th and the other in Indianapolis, October 8th to 10th. Regardless of the event, I look forward to seeing everyone together again!
 
Read the latest issue of Mobile Electronics magazine [Click Here]
 
 
 
North Andover, MA – May 18, 2021 – The Mobile Electronics Association introduces the all-new Mobile Electronics Show! The series premiere, sponsored by Sony, will debut on Tuesday, May 18th at noon Eastern Time. For the first webcast, Mobile Electronics Association president and show host Chris Cook will interview some of the winners from the 2020 Mobile Electronics Industry Awards including Jason Kranitz of Kingpin Car & Marine Audio, Adam Devine of Devine Concepts, Kimberly Trainer of Car-Tunes, and Justin Kush of MTI. There is also a special opening interview with the Sales Pro of the Year, Mike Rundel of Sony.
 
“The Mobile Electronics Show will be broadcast on YouTube, Facebook, and Vimeo and will include great interviews with key players in the Mobile Electronics Industry” said Chris Cook, President of MEA. “Each show will bring to life content from Mobile Electronics Magazine in an infotaining, video podcast format that will feature dealers, manufacturers, distributors and key industry personalities."
 
For a direct link to the webcast go to http://me-mag.com/me-show.
 
About the Mobile Electronics Association
Mobile Electronics Association (MEA) is a trade association comprised of installing dealers and product vendors dedicated to serving the needs of the mobile electronics specialist industry. MEA owns and produces KnowledgeFest, regional trade-only industry events that combine educational programming and vendor training with a trade show floor. MEA owns and publishes the monthly Mobile Electronics® magazine, which is the industry’s #1 resource, as well as other digital media, including websites and the industry’s e-newsletter Hotwire. MEA provides software and data-driven services to vendors and retailers. Learn more at mobile-electronics.com.
 
Media Contact:
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
978-645-6434
North Andover, MA – May 18, 2021 – KnowledgeFest™ Orlando, produced by the Mobile Electronics Association (MEA), will be held June 25-27, 2021 at the Orange County Convention Center. The event debut will host exhibitors from top brands as well as more than 100 hours of dealer education workshops and vendor sponsored training. Registration is open for the event and for the host hotel, Rosen Centre Hotel. For 2021, MEA is anticipating strong return in participation to KnowledgeFest for 2021 starting with a new first-time event in Orlando Florida. For official information on the event please go to http://www.knowledgefest.org/.
 
“KnowledgeFest is the only industry event devoted exclusively to the mobile specialist, the installing dealer. The addition of the event in Orlando brings KnowledgeFest to a coast-to-coast nationwide audience” said Chris Cook, President of MEA. “Combining an exhibit floor with dealer education and manufacturer training, KnowledgeFest delivers a tremendous value for the entire industry."
 
Those attending this year’s event should know that we put their health and safety at the top of our list. We have collected information regarding the best-known processes and procedures designed to provide attendees with a safe and successful education, training, and trade show experience. We look forward to providing all participants an event that allows them to come together and learn from one another.
 
For more information and to register for KnowledgeFest, visit KnowledgeFest.org
 
Upcoming KnowledgeFest events:
  • August 27-29, 2020 - Dallas, TX
  • October 8-10, 2021 - Indianapolis, IN

About the Mobile Electronics Association

Mobile Electronics Association (MEA) is a trade association comprised of installing dealers and product vendors dedicated to serving the needs of the mobile electronics specialist industry. MEA owns and produces KnowledgeFest, regional trade-only industry events that combine educational programming and vendor training with a trade show floor. MEA owns and publishes the monthly Mobile Electronics® magazine, which is the industry’s #1 resource, as well as other digital media, including websites and the industry’s e-newsletter Hotwire. MEA provides software and data-driven services to vendors and retailers. Learn more at mobile-electronics.com.
 
Media Contact:
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
978-645-6434
 

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