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7-19-2017, Mobile Electronics -- Out on the west coast of California where many car audio and video companies are headquartered, SAVV Entertainment Systems makes its home, too. A manufacturer and importer of 12-volt video products, dash cams, and its range of Smart-Link products, the company has its own engineering lab in South Korea and manufacturing facility in China. In business since 1998, SAVV has steadfastly built a strong network of regional distributors and retailers. A regular in the North Hall of the Las Vegas Convention Center during CES for more than a decade, SAVV has also through the years established itself as an OEM partner to automakers and to other 12-volt companies. Interestingly, the company established itself on a product category that is diminishing every year, and while it will never go away, rear seat entertainment has been forever changed. “We have been doing video products for years—and that is our specialty,” said Daniel Lee, vice president of SAVV. “That includes headrest monitors and overhead monitors which we have offered since the company began back in 1998.” Today, the most popular size for the overhead monitor is still the 10- inch, according to Lee. For the headrest, the most popular…
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Mobile Electronics, 7-12-2017 -- Colonel Hannibal Smith, leader of the fictional commando squad, The A-team, once said, "I love it when a plan comes together!" But plans don't come together by accident—neither does a crack unit of the best in any field. Whether it's with television shows, military operations or business, the top minds in any field know that being the best relies on two main things: remaining competitive while staying cooperative to execute a plan.  Since the start of his 12-volt journey, Sean Davis, owner of Tip Top Customs in Morris, Ill., has kept those two traits at the forefront of his business mindset. As the son of a business owner, Davis learned a great deal about best practices as a youth, especially when it comes to working on vehicles. "I've been into cars my whole life. My dad owned a body shop when I was younger. He did a lot of racing, mostly drag racing," Davis said. "Once I was old enough to drive, I went to a couple sound-off shows. I remember clearly the Rockford Fosgate van being there. I sat in the back with  the four 18's. It triggered something in my brain. Then I started…
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7-10-2017, Mobile Electronics -- It wasn't always the case, but over the years the 12-volt industry has developed an appreciation for self-sponsored education. When those same educators decided to incorporate real-world training into their classes, it gave students the chance to put their knowledge into immediate practice. Such was the case with the recent Mobile Solutions training in Tempe, Ariz., which was hosted by ORCA Design & Manufacturing Corp.   The only prerequisite for entry was a required purchase of a certain amount of product, which could be any combination of brands a dealer carries. The workshop had a set limit of 25 people, made up of established ORCA dealers on a first-come, first-served basis. Naturally, the class filled up quickly, thanks to what was offered. "Just buy an airline ticket and show up. Obviously there is a qualifying order, but that's peanuts. It's a normal order for most shops. We cover the cost of the seat, all three nights for the hotel and all meals while you're there," said Nalaka Adikari, Sales Director at ORCA. "Training is something that we truly believe in. It's about making our retailers better and to be successful. This is the formula that I…
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6-29-2017, Mobile Electronics Magazine -- Connectivity is changing our Industry faster than we know. It’s time to get in front of it.   Looking toward the future and crystal ball aside, none of us can truly say we know what tomorrow will bring. What we do know is that past trends, today’s business and new technology advancements all play a role. As an industry, we are facing challenges to find good people, integrate into newer automobiles and overcome ever shrinking margins with competition from growing online sales. I have been both encouraged and distressed as I listen to retailers across this land. Some are stating signs of recovery while others continue to struggle. Some have hope of recovery, while others are awaiting the other boot to drop. Their statements, coupled with news of some key regional and national chains closing shop and others scaling back their interest seem to point to an opportunity for some market share growth for the independent specialist. However, outside of market share growth, our economy still appears to have some potholes on the road to recovery. As an industry of retailers with strong ties to the automotive industry, we also need to be real about…
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6-21-2017, Mobile Electronics Magazine -- Marketing techniques are not one-size-fits-all. How a business approaches marketing and customer retention varies depending on a lot of factors, including demographics, location and niche. When it comes to customer retention through email, business owners must find a good balance in order to avoid alienating customers by sending too many emails. To make email marketing effective, a strategy has to be implemented that takes into account subject lines, content and graphics that emotionally engage the consumer. Jon Dewar owns Modern Media Geeks, a company based out of Kingsland, Ga. to help businesses with online marketing. Dewar has worked with businesses in a number of industries and acknowledged the difficulty of finding the right approach. “It’s a massive deal. Email marketing as a whole is not a strong sector. Any good email marketer will tell you, you want the email to be sent at five or six in the morning so it’s at the top of the inbox,” Dewar said, noting that most people turn off their alarm in the morning and then pick up their phone. “It’s a fighting chance you’ll be opened instead of swiped.” Use engaging graphics that spark an emotion, Dewar said,…
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Sound impossible? Ready to start writing furious comments? Then you’re ready to have a real conversation about our industry. Throughout social media and mobile electronics publications, we have seen dozens of retailers step up their game by creating boutique stores and installation bays utilizing all the latest installation techniques catering to automotive enthusiasts. But what about the customers who buy elsewhere? How likely are they to come in to your store?  Unless you have been living under a rock for the past ten years, you already know online sales are growing at an alarming rate and taking money out of our brick and mortar stores. Look at Radio Shack, Circuit City and Best Buy. Radio Shack is in bankruptcy, Circuit City is gone and Best Buy had to do a major restructuring of their store’s culture and core business practices. Did you know that an article in Forbes stated that Best Buy is growing by 17 percent in Q4 this year in online sales? Let’s take an honest look in the mirror. People don’t buy from us for only three reasons. I call this the three P’s: Price: They found it somewhere at a lower price. Product: They did not…
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