THE DESIGN/BUILD TRADES
One of CEDIA’s biggest strategic pushes is outreach to the design/build community, and the people managing the Expo exhibition floor — Emerald Expositions — are providing an assist.
“I've been going to CEDIA Expo since 2009, and one of my various hats is running the Kitchen and Bath Industry Show (KBIS),” says Brian Pagel, Senior Vice President, Emerald Expositions. “The National Kitchen & Bath Association has worked with CEDIA for a number of years in terms of trying to create that connection between the integrator, the builder, the designer, and the architects. That’s been a relationship that, to some degree, has struggled. Some builders view integrators as another sub-contractor they should manage. We believe the opposite. They can be invaluable partners. If done properly, these are great upsell opportunities for builders, designers, and integrators because you’re selling a more robust package to consumers looking for connected solutions.”
Pagel and company are marketing the annual Expo to the other relevant industries, specifically those that have close relationship to the industry. Emerald Expositions also owns and operates Kitchen & Bath Business magazine, the official publication of KBIS. Pagel adds that “KBB magazine has dedicated an entire section on home technology and CEDIA Expo in their July/August edition to increase awareness and interest in the industry.”
Don’t Go Changing
One concern Pagel’s heard more than once: “Will I still recognize the old Expo I know and love?”
“Our commitment when we went through the process of acquiring the Expo was that we did not want to assume we knew everything. It was clearly working well. Our commitment from day one has been to enhance the event. One of the great advantages that we have is that CEDIA Expo has an incredibly loyal following. All we want to do is build upon the solid foundation it already has. Where we hope to impact the Expo is directly in the attendee experience: make it easier for them to navigate the floor; make it easier to get around and seek out the products that they want; give them as many opportunities as possible to network with their peers or partners; and continue their professional development. Emerald Expositions is very clear that we are not the group that should be developing technical content. CEDIA is the leading global authority in this space, and part of the long-term strategic partnership with CEDIA is to support their continued efforts to create educational content and professional standards that help to elevate the trade.”