With no in-person SEMA trade show this year, Kicker decided to hold its own virtual event over a three day period. Other companies, given that both the upcoming SEMA and CES shows will be virtual, are looking at how to best reach retailers.
JVCKenwood is not introducing a lot of products early next year (it just shipped its large, floating screen radios last month) and so it is not planning virtual attendance at either SEMA or CES. “If we were [holding a major introduction], we would do something like Kicker is doing,” said JVCKenwood Senior Manager, Marketing, Scott Caswell.
Pioneer will not be participating in the virtual SEMA, but it does intend to participate in virtual CES in January.
Kicker, on the other hand, is introducing a wide selection of new products, including new subwoofer technology as well as new amplifiers and powersports speakers, which are due to ship early next year. Given the scope of the launch, it decided to do more than participate virtually in SEMA360. And it also decided to hold a live streaming event for consumers.
Kicker announced a virtual event October 21-23. One day of the event will be limited to reps and distributors (October 21), one for dealers (October 22), and one day for consumers (October 23).
The consumer day will be held at 5 pm Central time and will feature celebrities and influencers as well as an appearance by Kicker Founder Steve Irby. New product introductions will be followed by a Q &A session.
“Over time we’ve built a network of influencers, mostly musicians and athletes, and several will contribute video content,” said Kicker Director of Marketing Kevin Campbell. Industry personalities participating will include Dereck Williston (Williston Audio Labs), Dean Beyett and Fernando Lopez (Five Star Car Stereo), Robert “Hifi” Vega, and others.
Kicker’s total social media following is over 1/2 million users and it will publicize the event to attract consumer viewers.
During the event, called KICKER UnMASKED! Live, the company will discuss “the current state of the brand,” as well as new products. The trade virtual events will be held via zoom from Kicker headquarters in Stillwater, OK.
Dealers will also get “an evening of fun, product unveilings, information and the opportunity to ask questions live.” Attendees can also win prizes during the show. Thursday’s dealer presentations are at 9 am CDT (scheduled for Eastern and Central time zones), and 4 pm. CDT (scheduled for Mountain and Pacific time zones).
Separately, as reported earlier, the Mobile Electronics Association announced that its KnowledgeFest tradeshow for the car audio industry will be held both in-person in Dallas, and virtually on December 4.