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Tradeshow Tips

Marketing Matters is getting ready for CEDIA EXPO 2013, which is one of the most important tradeshows of the year for those in the residential integration industry.

As we prepare, we thought it might be nice to share a few tips from our years of experience attending shows, for this show or any others you may have on the horizon.


All about Building Relationships

Everything you do should revolve around building relationships. Seeing the new product is nice, yet relationship building with those in your industry is paramount. I have the mindset that everyone you meet at a tradeshow is important. Don’t just play someone off because you think they are no value to you. We’ve met competitors that give us business because of conflicts of interest, junior associates that have introduced us to their company decision makers or remembered us when they took a new position, or even people we couldn’t do business with and they referred us to a friend.


Elevator Pitch

Your elevator pitch is a great tool to use when asked about what you do. Be sure to modify as necessary to the conversation at hand. After all,  everyone you talk to has one thing in mind: How you can help them.


Tailor your pitch for each person you meet. Doing a little research before the show and writing down notes on what issues they may have and how you can solve them can make for some very potent quick pitches. Consider:

1)     Who’s their target

2)     What do they want to accomplish

3)     What issues might they have that you can solve


Game Plan

Have a game plan for the show. Knowing who you want to talk to, a little about them, how you can help, who the person you want to talk is, etc., before the show can make the best most effective use of your time. In short, make a plan, map it out, make it work.


Attend the Events

Visiting on the show floor is nice, but don’t miss out on the wonderful opportunities after the show. I’ve built some of the longest relationships here. (For a list of events happening at CEDIA EXPO 2013, visit


Follow Up

If you don’t follow up after the show, you might as well save your money, not go and do something else. Nearly everyone intends to do this, but not everyone does. I don’t think it’s really ever too late to follow up with someone. I’ve found cards in briefcase several months after a show and followed up which lead to good conversations. And dig up your contacts from last year’s show and follow up before the show. Maybe you can meet with them again and something benefitial will come of it.


There are so many more tips, and we’d love to hear what you’re learned from your experience. Please share!

First CEDIA EXPO a Powerful Sight to Behold

As the newest Marketing Matters team member to attend a CEDIA EXPO, my goal for the 2012 event was to go in with a fresh perspective and explore the possibilities of what the trade show could offer. To my delight, what I experienced was a diverse and passionate gathering of some of the most technically knowledgeable, driven industry experts.

Considering my previous acquaintance with the trade show experience in other industries, I must admit that I did anticipate the long show hours. The tired feet and other perils of traveling took their toll, quite thankfully, to a somewhat lesser extent than they might have. This preservation of energy was due in large part to the mental preparation and tidbits of advice offered by my experienced colleagues. Breath mints? Check! Comfortable shoes? Double-check!

As coincidence would have it, Marketing Matters was also fortunate enough to be promoting a number of new product launches and even new company launches. I had the distinction of sharing my first CEDIA EXPO with products that won well deserved honors: the CE Pro BEST Award and the Custom Retailer Magazine EXC!TE Award. Understandably, as helpful and inquisitive as I strived to be on the show floor, I personally didn’t win any awards for it.

All things considered, CEDIA EXPO 2012 was a fantastic inauguration into the electronics installation show world based on the valuable information shared with attendees:

  1. As a blooming industry professional, I learned why it is valuable to take every product demonstration that you possibly can.
    • Taking the time to find out about start-up companies revealed new trends in concepts related to the electronics industry, such as design aesthetics and interactivity in AudioXperts 4TV sound consoles or the environmental considerations and power handling for RoseWater Energy Group’s Residential Energy Storage Hub.
  2. Familiarize yourself with product innovations that you are most excited about and let that enthusiasm be the driving force that pushes you to seek inter-related concepts in other product categories.
    • For example, the incredible levels of home automation possibilities demonstrated by Clare Controls are taken to the next logical level with their new ClareHome app, which tailors control to the person rather than the room opening up new possibilities for wireless interactivity and sound amplification.
  3. Developing a big picture vision of whole home design and installation is a considerable benefit to see the industry from an integrator’s perspective.
    • Display Development demonstrated in-wall technology that produces peak performance visual imaging in a way that influences cooling systems, lighting considerations, distortion correction technology and a whole host of other concepts in a very promising way.

What exciting things did you see at the show?

Marketing Matters thanks all of the clients that allowed us the opportunity to help make this event a success for their teams.


Bedrock Learning


Clare Controls

Display Development

DPL Labs

Energy Squad


Metra Home Theater Group

Rosewater Energy Group


Eric Lachs is the Marketing and Public Relations Manager at Marketing Matters (, a communications and design firm specializing in technology, consumer and custom electronics, audio-video and related industries.

Featured Blog Post: Can You Benefit from Location-Based Marketing Services?

The following is an excerpt from a guest blog post by Marketing Matters Director of Public Relations, Scott Moody, at Residential Systems magazine.

Residential  Systems website Header

Can You Benefit from Location-Based Marketing Services?

What if someone told you that there were services available that allowed you to easily and cost-effectively promote your business, gain referrals, advertise specials and increase your web presence — all in one giant swoop? If you have any business savvy at all you would immediately jump at the chance. Well, you’re in luck.

Location based services are web- and mobile-based networks and apps that allow users to gain information on virtually any topic within their current geographic location. The central idea behind these services are to enable users to quickly and easily find relevant and interesting local attractions, businesses, events, etc., and in the case of most of these services, allows them to “check-in” and share information through social networks.

To give you a better understanding, picture this: John and Jane Homeowner realized that their recent Super Bowl party would have been 10 times better if they owned a great audio system. He decides to find a local electronics retailer and queues up Yelp on his iPad…. Read the Entire Blog Post at Residential Systems.