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This Minute at Runco

Choosing a Dealer Doesn’t Need to be Hair Raising

Monday, February 22, 2010

Posted February 22, 2010 by Jennifer B. Davis

Over the past several of my friends on Facebook changed their profile pictures to a “retro image” complete with dorky glasses, braces, big hair, and pencil-necked boyfriends.

You know the type and probably have some of your own photos and yearbooks stashed away.

It immediately brought to mind the time when I had an ill-advised perm. All my friends were getting them, I found a salon with a great promotional price, and got a perm. It was technically executed well, but the combination of curls and my thick hair left me looking like I was wearing a Dolly Parton wig. Not a great look on a gangly 9th grader, I can assure you.

I see a lot of parallels between this and some discussions I have been having with Runco authorized dealers in the past few weeks. There is a big difference between someone who CAN install a home theater system in your home and someone who you SHOULD trust. Like that hair stylist who can formulate a permanent solution, but doesn’t have a clue about anything else, not every audio visual specialist should be trusted with your home.

Below are some things that you should keep in mind when selecting an audio video designer and installer for your home with home you can build a long-term relationship.

They must have the technical capability to do the job, of course. So, you should see their portfolio of comparable projects and check references. Often you will personally know someone who has had work done by the dealer, so you can feel confident in their expertise. A browse through their websites can be informative, as well. Ask your prospective dealer about their background, their specialties, their industry affiliations, their insurance coverage, and what continuing education they may have received from the Custom Electronic Design and Installation Association (CEDIA) or direct from manufacturer’s like factory training from Runco at our Runco Academy. Some of our dealers are also members of the American Society of Interior Designers (ASID) or other associations that are relevant to your project and the work you would like them to perform.

We invite you to visit the dealer’s showroom or some of their previous installations that are of similar scope or budget. A visual inspection of the installer’s operation will speak volumes about their work and their attention to the details that matter to you. Not every quality installer will have an extensive display or retail demonstration facilities. In fact, some of the best don’t. All you want to make sure is that the firm is neat, organized, and committed to its business and your satisfaction.

You’ll want to find a dealer that carries the range and quality of products that interest you from video products, to audio systems and lighting or home automation control. Be wary of an installer who says “I’m not an authorized dealer for Runco, but I can get it for you.” We, like other manufacturers, choose our dealers carefully and it is in your best interest to choose a dealer who can support you fully after the sale.

Of course, we would love to recommend local dealers for you to contact using our dealer locator. Here you can find someone familiar with Runco products in your city and find a map to their showrooms where you can see Runco products on display. Of course, not every dealer is right for every client and we have several dealers in most metropolitan areas, so be sure to make you do your own evaluation before making a selection. And before you pick up the phone, visit the Runco Gallery and start creating a design file of inspiring ideas for your project.

Special thanks to the good folks at CEDIA, Home Theater Design Magazine (Avcom Publishing, Ltd.), a classic book by Tina Skinner (Schiffer Publising), and for Runco dealers who helped contribute ideas to this post.

Jennifer B. Davis is all about technology innovation and is a customer advocate, business executive, mom, and loves her job as Runco’s VP of marketing.

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