By Alesia Hendley

When Andrea Varrone cut that giant yellow ribbon everyone, including myself, stormed the show floor. There was a rush of excitement that came over me knowing that I was given the opportunity to attend a press conference with Digital Signage Expo (DSE) show director Andrea Varrone.

Andrea ribbon cutting

Andrea was a guest on the The AV Life along with Alan Brawn where she gave us a glimpse of what to expect once arriving at the conference.


Meeting her face-to-face was a priority on my list coming into Vegas.

As an audiovisual (AV) operator, I have a different vantage point from most integrators. So, the first thing I wanted to address was what DSE had to offer the AV industry and see where the expo brought true value to the integrator. Of course, education is a driving force that both AV and the Digital Signage industry are built on. Hardware and software are great to see on the floor but, “it’s about knowing your business proposition.” said Varrone. “It depends on what your focus is, there is something here for everyone.”

“The people and the networking is what I looking forward to seeing every year. The digital signage world is a tight knit community. We have become like a family.”

Any new attendee to this conference can see the relationships that have been built over the years on the show floor. As a first-time attendee, I wanted to know the best practices to make the right connections. For the first time DSE held a new attendee boot camp. “We wanted to have a place for new people to not only learn about how to navigate the show, but maybe meet a buddy.” Varrone stated.

“Building a community will help people want to come back every year. Community is the key.” – Andrea Varrone

When building community is a key focus, we know marketing then comes into play. Marketing-wise, how does DSE target so many different groups within different areas.

“Our marketing is all about getting people here. Which is extremely challenging because we have 20 different vertical markets, so not only is it digital signage. We have restaurants, retail, integrators, hospitals, higher education, and we have to hit all of those markets. We have about 40 media partners that Geri Wolff of Market Works International, Inc. works with on behalf of DSE.” Varrone explained.

Social media marketing plays a major role in all of this. DSE twitter account recently hit 12.8k followers and they are continuing to grow that platform along with their new Instagram account. The DSE team has done a great job hitting a wide variety of different audiences on social alone. To capitalize on the use of each social platform video is a must.

“We have an in-house videographer. His main purpose is to capture as much as he can from each booth. The videos will be housed on DSE YouTube page with helps us continue to market the show.” said Varrone.

If you are not at the show, be sure to visit the DSE web page frequently to see what you’ve missed by not being there. If you are here in Vegas I advise you stop by the DSE booth 636, especially if you are looking to be an exhibitor in the future. There you will find detailed information on how to be a part of DSE2018.

STAY TUNED as I continue my venture here at DSE2017 @thesmoothfactor


Alesia Hendley is an Audiovisual professional that found her passion at a young age as a sound engineer with her Father’s church. In the early stages of the church’s foundation they couldn’t afford musicians. By utilizing audio and technology she and her Father found creative ways to go higher both musically and spiritually, taking the congregation with them. Now you can find her operating/installing audiovisual systems or executing creative ventures. As a young professional she’s finding ways to bring AV, creatives, and creative visions together in the effort to leave her mark by making an impact, and not just an impression.

Find out more about Alesia at as well as on Twitter @thesmoothfactor.