An expected big draw for Black Friday in the 12 volt category this year is CarPlay at steep discounts from leading brands.
We’ve seen a preview of one doorbuster special for a top branded loaded CarPlay/Android Auto deck at $399.99, down from a list price of $799 and an everyday price of $549.
Additionally, a Boss Audio CarPlay mechless deck is expected to drop to $249/$279 for Black Friday, down from $349. The model BVCP9675 has a 6.75 inch capacitive touch screen and 24-bit Hi-Res Audio capability for FLAC and WAV files.
Other hot door buster items this year are expected to include dash cams, window tint, and of course, remote start. We’ve heard of one name brand mirror monitor plus backup camera from a leading brand at $129/$149, down from $249.
Sound of Tri-State is already advertising a Pioneer CD receiver with Bluetooth, SiriusXM capability (with 3 months of free service) and Siri Eyes Free at $79 (after $70 rebate), down from $279.
Black Friday arrived early this year and is expected to stay late. “Pre-Black Friday” or “Count Down to Black Friday” sales from Amazon and Best Buy hit early in November followed by Walmart sales starting November 9. Sound of Tristate, DE, Tunes-N-Tint, FL and Al & Ed’s Autosound, CA started holidays sales last week.
For those dealers who watch Black Friday from the sidelines, you may be interested in reports from the Mobile Electronics Specialists of America (MESA) buying/marketing group. Executive Director Ryan Gunter says MESA members who once stayed away from Black Friday are now finding the holiday a welcome profit center and a means of generating new customers. Even MESA dealers that have participated in Black Friday for the past 7 or 8 years are still seeing double digit gains in sales for the Thanksgiving weekend year over year, he said.
Additionally, several dealers said vendors are starting to offer Black Friday specials more readily. Al & Ed’s Autosound’s John Haynes said, “Over the years, we’ve typically had to reach out to vendors to find promotional items for the Black Friday weekend, but this year several vendors approached us with specials they had already put together.”
This year MESA asked vendors for discounts on higher end items than in the past. “We did a combination of two things. You’ve got to have the entry level to grab their attention but also have good deals on the mid- to- high priced products. For the past few years we started getting our members to get promotional on Black Friday, so it was all about getting them into the game. The majority did not participate…Now, as their base is expecting them to have that sale, it’s easier now to promote some higher price points and still get a good deal for the consumer,” he said.
If you want to follow MESA guidelines for promoting a Black Friday sale, start with digital art for in-store banners, email blasts and Facebook and social media. Market to your current base and then purchase Google ad words and boost your Facebook posts with paid ads.
“Black Friday definitely has the ability to get dealers a totally different customer base that may never have ventured into their store. The customer is looking for that gift…..they come in the store and they say, ‘I didn’t realize I can get a backup camera or add collision avoidance sensors to the car I have.’ So it’s an opportunity to educate about what we do in our industry and for the most part, the average consumer does not realize we do more than say, radios and speakers,” said Gunter.