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Automation Unplugged

Automation Unplugged is a Facebook Live show recorded weekly with our host Ron Callis, Owner and CEO of the digital marketing agency, One Firefly. In each Automation Unplugged episode, Ron speaks with leading industry personalities and technology professionals to discuss all things business development, technology trends, and more. These interviews are designed to help our clients and members of the custom integration industry keep up-to-date with the latest news as well as learn from experts in the field.

Watch Episode #49: An Industry Q&A with Gordon Van Zuiden

Next Step: Energy automation & management

Watch Episode #49: An Industry Q&A with Gordon Van Zuiden

This week's show features our host Ron Callis interviewing Gordon Van Zuiden. Recorded Live on Wednesday August 15th, 2018 at 12:30pm EST.

About Gordon Van Zuiden

Gordon served as a CEDIA Board of Director for 6 years.

He also wrote articles about Home Networking topics for Residential Systems magazine for almost 20 years.

In 1999, he founded cyberManor. He also constructed a full Control4 Certified Showroom home at our corporate headquarters in Los Gatos, CA.

Interview Recap

Here are some of the topics Ron had the opportunity to discuss with Gordon:

  • Gordon’s background in the industry
  • The impact of voice control on our integrated home technology solutions
  • Energy Management solutions in the home (solar, battery storage, etc)

  • The role of being a total home technology advisor

Watch Episode #48: An Industry Q&A with Seth Evenson

Making it easier for more dealers

Watch Episode #48: An Industry Q&A with Seth Evenson

This week's show features our host Ron Callis interviewing Seth Evenson, Director of Customer Experience Management of AVAD. Recorded Live on Wednesday August 8th, 2018 at 12:30pm EST.

About Seth Evenson

With nearly 20 years in the CE industry Seth has built a career with both custom retailers and over the last 13 years at distributor AVAD. His career started with AVAD as Inside Sales at the Minneapolis branch and later became the Branch Manager, where he was responsible for leading every aspect at the facility and larger sales market at large and later transitioned into the District Manager for the Central Region, then the West, where he managed branch locations and outside sales across North America.Two years ago, Seth was promoted to Director of Customer Experience Management and remains at the forefront of AVAD’s new initiatives, marketing, tradeshow support, and dealer focused touchpoints. Seth delivers end-to-end customer experiences in the support of AVAD’s vision, strategy and evolution. With dealer success in mind, Seth is accountable for designing and executing the customer experience roadmap and has a direct oversight of marketing and partnering with other functions, including project management, sales, customer support, supply chain and information technology.

Interview Recap

Here are some of the topics Ron had the opportunity to discuss with Seth:

  • Seth’s extensive career in the A/V industry.
  • Staying ahead of the competition.
  • AVAD’s presence at tradeshows, as well as events for dealers.
  • The future of the industry and technology.

Watch Episode #46: An Industry Q&A with Kenny Kim

Solving 80% of service calls - remotely

Watch Episode #46: An Industry Q&A with Kenny Kim

This week's show features our host Ron Callis interviewing Kenny Kim, VP of Connected Products at SnapAV. Recorded Live on June 6th, 2018 at 12:30pm EDT.

About Kenny Kim

Kenny Kim joined SnapAV in 2015 after seven years in product, strategy, and operational roles with AT&T, where he helped launch AT&T Digital Life, a home automation and security service. He is now responsible for leading the connected product lines at SnapAV, including Araknis Networking, Luma/Visualint Surveillance, WattBox Power, and OvrC Remote Management Platform, helping technology professionals deliver the promise of the connected world to their clients.

Interview Recap

Here are some of the topics Ron had the opportunity to discuss with Kenny:

  • Kenny's history in the industry
  • Importance of remote support - not only for operational efficiencies, but for customer satisfaction, security, and differentiation
  • Remote monitoring & management solutions - native and appliance-based type of solutions
  • OvrC remote management and its connected product ecosystem - mission and focus

Watch Episode #45: An Industry Q&A with Jeannette Howe

The importance of keeping your customers informed

Watch Episode #45: An Industry Q&A with Jeannette Howe

This week's show features our host Ron Callis interviewing Jeannette Howe, VP of Sales for Transformative Engineering. Recorded Live on May 30th, 2018 at 12:30pm EDT.

About Jeannette Howe

Jeannette Howe is Vice President of Transformative Engineering. Transformative Engineering (T-E) designs, manufactures and sells a very focused line of audio, video and data communications devices including HDBaseT extenders, switchers and baluns that are essential elements in the construction of high-end residential and commercial entertainment systems. Previously, Ms. Howe was the founder and Executive Director of Specialty Electronics Nationwide (SEN, now HTSN) the specialty home theater and CI buying group. Prior to SEN, Ms. Howe was the National Membership Manager for Home Entertainment Source (now ProSource). Once upon a time she was Director of Membership for the Professional AudioVideo Retailers Association (PARA). Early in her career Ms. Howe was the Audio Buyer at Magnolia Hi-Fi and she worked at Tweeter in a variety of positions including Audio Buyer and ”Swill Master.” Ms. Howe is an avid champion for the specialty independent channel.

Interview Recap

Here are some of the topics Ron had the opportunity to discuss with Jeannette:

  • Jeannette’s history in the industry
  • The Independent Channel
  • Transformative Engineering
  • Copper is not dead
  • Integrating voice assistant products into your home
  • The importance of staying in contact with your clients - Marketing

Watch Episode #44: An Industry Q&A with Chris Trojnar

Audio: People can hear the difference

Watch Episode #44: An Industry Q&A with Chris Trojnar

This week's show features our host Ron Callis interviewing Chris Trojnar, Sales Manager, Southeast US, Harmon Luxury Audio. Recorded Live on May 23rd, 2018 at 12:30pm EDT.

About Chris Trojnar

Chris's brand responsibilities includes Mark Levinson, Revel, Lexicon, Arcam and JBL Synthesis. Chris Trojnar is an industry veteran with over 22 years experience in both the retail and manufacturing side of luxury audio. After graduating with a degree in music, Chris found his calling in consumer electronics.

Interview Recap

Here are some of the topics Ron had the opportunity to discuss with Chris:

  • Chris's background in the industry
  • How to prepare for a sales' demo
  • Showing the difference to the customer
  • Finding ways to demonstrate high performance audio
  • And more!

Watch Episode #43: An Industry Q&A with Brian Jones

Making technology easy for everyone

Watch Episode #43: An Industry Q&A with Brian Jones

This week's show features our host Ron Callis interviewing Brian Jones, owner of Alpha Dog AVS. Recorded Live on May 9th, 2018 at 12:30pm EDT.

About Brian Jones

Brian started working for a car stereo shop part time after school in 1996. He worked as a lead installer and fabricator until 2000, and then started working at a company as an install apprentice. After 9 years, he became a Field Supervisor, managing a team of 3 installers and assisted the store’s general manager and his sales staff in system design and sales. In 2009, Brian decided to go out on his own and never looked back, founding Alpha Dog AVS in 2016.

Interview Recap

Here are some of the topics Ron had the opportunity to discuss with Brian:

  • Brian's background in the industry
  • How to make technology easy for anyone
  • Working with baby boomers vs millennials
  • Staying on top of changing technology
  • And more!