By Corey Moss
I wrote a blog (on another publication) in mid-2016 and ended it this way:
It’s not about AV or AV/IT – it’s about technology, and the customer experience.
The experience. We have no problem talking about the technology, especially within the bounds of of the industry. People attend the conferences and trade shows to see what each vendor has brought to the table, and more than that when that particular technology will be available – and as many of us who attend trade shows know, the answer can at times be a best guess. There are the companies that deliver straightforward educated messages, and then there are those who will highlight certain aspects with the hopes that you’ll be convinced it could be the solution for you.
Then there are those who will talk about technology solutions along the lines of magic. I had a conversation with an executive in the AV industry about this, and he considered that this likely relates to the “experience” of witnessing the technology in action, which I guess could be like sitting in the front row of a magic act in a theater. Yes, I believe that’s how those executives and marketing mavens use the word to describe their products, where they even take the stage in a theater or even stand at a trade show booth and use the word to describe what you’re witnessing right before your eyes – possibly even followed by “now was that something?”
There are those who do talk magic, and magical experiences – and they are the ones who could truly own the statement. Here’s Steve Jobs talking about ‘Magic in Business’:
Coming from a Steve Jobs it’s not a buzzword, it’s a belief in the technology as well as the advancement it provides for society on the whole. When an industry executive takes the stage in a theater or the front spot at a trade show booth, do we believe them in the same way? Possibly, if they have even a near track record of a Steve Jobs, and can provide that same level of “magic,” however the product needs to do so much more than wow the audience.
Now where marketers call something gamechanging, I ask just what game are you changing? Are you speaking in buzz, or is there a game to actually be changed? There’s also revolutionary, possibly being akin to the radical overthrow of an industry. For some a radical approach has worked (count Jobs among those), however they are the true innovators, and we do indeed have some of those figures in the industry as well. Revolution in technology must coincide with true innovation, otherwise to just call something revolutionary just lays hollow in terms of anyone’s targeted goals and needs.
As for the customer, they can’t be sold, they must be presented to – informatively, and with their needs in mind. Or should I say shown the experience so that they understand it as it applies in their particular real world usage – one that will deliver, not just claim to.
The experience. It’s not a word, it’s a sense of awareness that someone has delivered on the recognized needs of the customer, and not just the performance of the technology. When does it become apparent that no matter how many bells, whistles and buzz words are attached to a product (4K this, cloud that), the moment that it all just clicks for the customer in terms of satisfying their goals is the real answer.
And why not make it exceptional? Go the extra mile, outperform, communicate at a higher level.
Technology advances every day at rapid speed, there’s no slowing it down – and yes, we have already entered a new age of technology in AV where devices, cloud and software – including QSC Q-SYS software on a high-performance standard Dell EMC PowerEdge R730 server – are at the forefront of discussion, both in the industry and with the end user. It’s the IT, which may not be for everyone, however it will be for those looking to advance for sure. Think of the customer, and their stake in the IT world as well.
As for the consideration of magic in technology, here’s an excellent statement highlighting a webinar “Balancing Audio Systems” presented by Chuck Espinoza, Staff Instructor at InfoComm International:
How many audio systems are installed and operated without PROPERLY being set up? Most of them. Many times, the idea of “if I can hear it, it’s working” will take the place of a properly balanced system. This session will take away some of the “mystery” of setting up your audio system – from microphone selection to properly setting up the amps. It’s not “magic”… its math.
Application, and experience in the real world.
With almost 20 years in audio visual integration and IT/computer sales and consulting, Corey Moss is the owner of Convergent Tech – online publications (Convergent Tech Blog and Convergent AV) and consulting. Corey writes for the publications and hosts/produces podcasts – ‘Convergent Tech Blog Discussion’ (on Convergent Tech Blog) and ‘The AV Life’ and ‘The Edge of AV’, both on Convergent AV. He has written for numerous industry publications about AV, IT, unified communications and collaboration (UCC), cloud and software, IoT, cybersecurity and more. He has also conducted interviews with AV and IT executives and global influencers.