AV Week 2012: Start Preparing Now
At the end of June, I had my first AV Week 2012 planning meeting with one of our local integrators. This year’s AV Week, spearheaded by InfoComm, is October 14 – 20. It’s a week to celebrate the industry and to educate others about the possibilities of professional AV. Over the years, I’ve found that to get the most out of AV Week, it’s important to define a plan early and to engage local industry members for help.
I love celebrating AV Week because it gives me the chance to teach our local community about the industry. It also allows me to connect with other InfoComm members who I might not regularly interact with. What’s most rewarding, however, is involving others within my own company in the activities. Involving them gives them the opportunity to see the outcome of something they’re a part of and to appreciate the industry’s imact.
In past AV Weeks, we’ve done several “behind the scenes” technology tours at local venues. Often, this is the first time that many of our employees have seen a product in use that they had a role in manufacturing, designing or shipping. It’s a powerful experience that creates a new understanding that can’t be communicated any other way. It also instills pride and appreciation for why they do what they do and how important it all is.
I realize many in our industry are not aware of AV Week. So I’m committed to reaching beyond my local market to talk to them about AV Week and how they can lead initiatives in their own communities. InfoComm launched AV Week several years ago to involve members in conducting activities and outreach for building awareness of the AV industry. It’s not intended to promote a company or a product; it’s an awareness campaign.
InfoComm has made it easy to get involved with AV Week through its tool kit and case studies. The tool kit offers ideas for what your company can do in your community. All the ideas are is fun. Here are just a few of the things our company will be doing during AV Week 2012:
- Lead a technology tour to a local venue. I’ve already reached out to the LDS Church here in Salt Lake city and they’re excited to show us their broadcast studio, AV systems and language interpretation labs. This end user has one of the most impressive AV venues I’ve ever seen. And our company will provide the tour-guide products to ensure everyone can hear.
- We will participate in the Walk4Hearing, put on by the Hearing Loss Association of America to help raise awareness. This is an activity we do every year and it happens to coincide with AV Week, which makes it even more special.
- We will get proclamations signed by the Utah Governors Office, the Salt Lake County Mayor, and the City of Bluffdale declaring October 14 – 20, 2012, AV Week in Utah, Salt Lake County and the City of Bluffdale.
These are all great events, and great opportunities to make news and send out press releases that draw attention to the pro-AV industry.
I’m also involved with Women in AV (WAVE). Our group has taken a page from the InfoComm tool kit to reach out to middle schools and high schools during AV Week. We’re encouraging others to do so to by:
- Working with science teachers. Be a guest lecturer during AV Week and offer lessons on the science of AV, including activities such as identifying the AV in use at their schools.
- Reaching out to the local TSA Chapter. The Technology Student Association is a national, non-profit organization for middle and high school students with a strong interest in technology.
- Donating to a school. This can be used equipment or funds raised to buy AV gear for a local school.
- Conducting tech tours. Check with a local school to see if there are any interested science, film and/or theater students who might want to tour an AV facility or visit a local venue to peek at the AV behind the scenes.
What activities do you have planned for AV Week 2012?