MasterTech Brings Renewed Enthusiasm to the Industry

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MasterTech Expo 2024

By Mr Retail

I just got back from the MasterTech Expo show in Mesa, AZ. I also took two of my techs with me. The three of us came away with a renewed sense of enthusiasm for the industry. We saw every aspect of people in this industry; technicians, salespeople, owners, reps, and factory folks. Everywhere I looked, I saw excitement and a sparkle in the eye. Here were some of our biggest moments:

I attended a seminar on luxury marketing with Larry Penn of MSC and Mobile Solutions in Canada along with the General Sales Manager from Porsche Calgary, Michael Menchelli who took the time to fly down and co-present this seminar, to teach us more about the Porsche brand and the culture. It was eye opening. Larry spoke about how partnering with luxury dealerships was a big revenue benefit for him as well as a positive referral program.

Mike Cofield of TX-based chain Custom Sounds and President of the MESA buying group gave a seminar titled “Are You Running Your Business Or Is It Running You?”  He discussed his employee manual as well as a store procedure manual. He brought several copies of the store procedure manual and when he offered them to the audience, you would have thought they were signed Taylor Swift shirts at a local high school. It affirmed to me where I need to do better in several areas of my own business.

MasterTech Expo 2024
Wayne Harris teaching at MasterTech Expo.

A seminar on electric vehicles was given by Larry Penn and Ray West of Titan Motoring, TN. They had a brand-new Tesla Model Y in the room with a full-blown system. They went into detail on the challenges and fallacies related to working on them. They identified the most popular vehicles of 2023 in America and how many Model Y’s and 3’s were sold, to show us how big the EV market can be for a retailer. They went into audio design, 12v on board batteries and how they were charged, and current draw limitations. The talk included how to reset different aspects of the vehicle after certain disassembly, battery drain, etc. It gave myself and my two guys a lot more confidence when it came to actively working on them.

My guys each did two full days of training, with one of them putting more focus on 3D printing and the other more on laser CNC work. Both guys came away more excited than ever to work with the new machines we recently bought for the install bay.

Chip Foose spent over a whole day at the event, bringing another level of electricity to the show. A door panel drawing contest was held and the winner received a sketching class with Chip and the privilege to follow along as he drew the vehicle of their dreams. All of this happened in real time for the attendees to watch, and I got to say, it was cool!

Dan Bowman of Titan Motoring taught me LOADS of new ideas related to the presentation of a vehicle to the client after it was finished. I learned how important it is in the long-term in winning referrals  from clients. Nick Akin of Musicar, OR showed me new ways to have email conversations and present proposals to clients while achieving high closing rates.

In the evenings, over meals, and on walks, my team would recap the day and you could see an intensity building among all of us. We are going to do a recap next week and compare notes. And then, most importantly, develop an action plan to put these great ideas into place.

In closing, we very likely are more excited about the mobile electronics industry than at any time in my 34 years as an owner.

Mark Miller (Mr Retail)

Mark Miller Westminster Speed & Sound, Mr Retail

Mark  is the CEO of Westminster Speed & Sound, an award-winning retailer in Westminster, Maryland. The company was founded in 1969, and Mark took it over in 1990 at the age of 23. He first started in the industry in 1986, so he has been at it for a while. He has served on the board of MERA, taught seminars in over a dozen different cities, and served on the SEMA New Product Awards judging team. He has been married to his wife Dawn for 33 years now and has four grown children and four grandchildren. His hobbies include being a sound engineer, doing life coaching, and being active in the local and national Porsche community.

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