SEMA Expands Opinion Leader Program at 2011 SEMA Show

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
(August 16, 2011)

Contact: Della Domingo
909/978-6723
dellad@sema.org

SEMA EXPANDS OPINION LEADER PROGRAM AT 2011 SEMA SHOW
-- More Automotive Enthusiasts to Offer Great Insight to Show Participants --

DIAMOND BAR, Calif. (August 16, 2011) — After two successful years, the Opinion Leader Program will once again expand at the 2011 SEMA Show. Through the research project, some of the nation’s most active and influential automotive enthusiasts are called upon to help industry professionals identify future trends by attending the show and providing firsthand feedback on the products and vehicles debuting at the SEMA Show.

“The Opinion Leader Program continues to grow each year and exceeds our expectations,” said Thomas Myroniak, Vice President of Marketing and Member Services. “Not only do we get an exceptional group of participants, but we are able to provide exhibitors and attendees immediate and in-depth feedback based on these influencers’ preferences, attitudes and outlook toward our industry and its products.”

The 2010 program included 459 enthusiasts, who were selected through a comprehensive application process, to attend the second day of the SEMA Show. This year, the program is expected to attract more than 800 enthusiast participants. In addition to completing a pre-show survey, participants are tasked with using social media, including Twitter, Facebook, Flickr and YouTube, to share their feedback on product, vehicle and trend highlights from the Show.

“Not only is this feedback considered invaluable research to SEMA Show exhibitors, they also gain a great deal of exposure from the Opinion Leader Program,” said Myroniak. “Through the use of social media platforms, the exposure is much more impactful because the information comes from a trusted source.”

In addition, onsite focus groups are conducted to provide deeper insight into enthusiasts’ perspectives and attitudes about the specialty equipment industry. This input, combined with the social media feedback and pre-show survey results, is captured in a comprehensive market research report and provided to exhibitors prior to being released to the industry-at-large.

“The information generated from the program is some of the best research we’ve ever done because it’s based on first-hand experience and knowledge from the influencers who help drive trends in our industry,” said Myroniak. “By giving these enthusiasts access to the newest products, we’re able to learn what resonates and what doesn’t. Exhibitor feedback indicates they find this information incredibly valuable and it undoubtedly aids in shaping future plans.”

To learn more about the SEMA Show Opinion Leader Program, contact Megan McKernan at opinionleaders@sema.org.

About SEMA and the SEMA Show
The SEMA Show is a trade show produced by the Specialty Equipment Market Association (SEMA), a nonprofit trade association founded in 1963. Since the first SEMA Show debuted in 1967, the annual event has served as the leading venue bringing together manufacturers and buyers within the automotive specialty equipment industry. Products featured at the SEMA Show include those that enhance the styling, functionality, comfort, convenience and safety of cars and trucks. Additional details are available at www.SEMAShow.com or www.sema.org, 909/396-0289.

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