InfoComm International has announced the program lineup for its fourth-annual AV Executive Conference (AVEC), set for November 9–11, 2016, at the Ritz-Carlton Key Biscayne, Miami. This year's theme, “Driving Profit Through Customer Experience,” will be captured through sessions focused on how to shift a company's revenue-building capability toward creating a memorable and distinctive experience for customers, rather than having price be the deciding factor.
AVEC brings together 200 leaders from systems integration and live events firms for three days of strategic business planning, industry insight sharing, and networking. Because AVEC will tackle business challenges from both strategic and tactical perspectives, it is recommended that companies send their top executives and representatives from sales and marketing.
"Today's technology moves at a torrid pace. We must strategically structure our businesses to meet the marketplace challenges of both today and tomorrow," said K.C. Schwarz, CEO, USAV. "Over the last four years, InfoComm's AV Executive Conference has challenged me and other USAV partners who have attended. Step back, elevate your thinking, plan for the future, develop strategy partnerships—these themes make AVEC both unique and powerful. This year's AVEC is further enhanced by a focus on breaking through plateaus and moving your business to the next level."
Led by a successful lineup of authors and businesses executives, AVEC's sessions will concentrate on how thriving companies deliver an experience as opposed to just goods and services; the importance of having a business approach that aligns sales, marketing, and the customer; and exploring the process of developing a customer experience.
In the session “Same Side Selling,” Ian K. Altman, CEO of Grow My Revenue and author of Same Side Selling[ital . title], will describe an integrity-based approach to selling that everyone can embrace. Altman will discuss research on how executives make decisions and how to align sales, marketing, and the customer experience to accelerate sales and grow business, all while ensuring dramatic results for customers. The workshop will lay out a straightforward, easy-to-implement approach for quickly identifying opportunities that are worth pursuing, and those that are not. Altman's presentation will highlight the Same Side Selling process, tailored to the AV industry, and offer tactical skills, practical exercises, and hands-on support for AVEC attendees who want to use this strategy in everyday business.
Gary Adamson, chief experience officer of Starizon Studio, will host the session “Developing the Customer Experience,” which stems from the Experience Design Place in Keystone, CO, where companies come to think anew about the experience they create for their customers (and often for employees and other audiences). Starizon takes "explorer teams" through a process to define future experiences they want to create, including a theme and a declaration that cements the theme in the minds of those in an organization. A full "experience map" helps define each element of the experience. Adamson's session will provide a rapid explanation of how the process works and how to ignite the strategy behind an experience. The workshop will also provide tactical tools that can help all levels of employees provide an exceptional customer experience.
In addition, AVEC's moderator Mark Jeffries, former Merrill Lynch stockbroker turned author and speaker, will sit down with Altman, Adamson, and Joseph Pine, co-author of The Experience Economy[ital .], for an interview to discuss their ideas. Pine was a popular presenter at AVEC 2015 in Amelia Island, FL. The Q&A session will explore the theory of experience economics and relate theory to actionable topics that each attendee will be able to utilize in their business.
"Meaningful, business-transforming experiences don't just happen,” Adamson said. “They are not just amped-up customer service. Experiences are not made; they are not delivered. They are performed. That's why the ability to design and choreograph an experience will separate the contenders from the pretenders in this new world of business. Our time together will take you from admiring world-class experiences to performing them."
AVEC will also feature keynote speakers Bert Jacobs, co-founder and chief executive optimist of the Life is Good Company, and Ken Schmidt, former director of communications for Harley-Davidson. They will both share lessons they've learned from building leading brands that celebrate the customer experience. In addition, InfoComm International executive director and CEO David Labuskes, CTS, CAE, RCDD, will discuss the association's strategic plan for advancing the AV industry.