From Vehicle Builders to Marketing Experts: SEMA Show Education Has It Covered
Topics Include Electronics, Builders, CEOs, Digital Marketing and International Exports
By Jason Catullo
When the doors of the 2021 SEMA Show officially open Tuesday, November 2, attendees will scope the Show floor for new and trendsetting products, meet with customers, and see nearly 2,000 custom vehicles with the latest in performance and styling upgrades. With the Show floor brimming with eye candy and fuel for the imagination, the SEMA Show Education Program is available to provide the know-how and knowledge to succeed in the specialty-equipment marketplace.
The SEMA Show Education Program includes more than 100 seminars covering market-specific topics and trends, giving Showgoers a cost-effective way to hear from top experts and learn the latest business skills. Education sessions begin on Monday, November 1, the day before the 2021 SEMA Show opens, and include sessions through Friday, November 5.
“Attending the SEMA Show is an investment, particularly for small businesses that close up shop while they are away,” said Tom Gattuso, SEMA vice president of events. “We work hard to provide Showgoers with the greatest possible return on their investment, and we’re excited about what we’ve developed for this year.”
Included in the SEMA Show Education Program are tracks covering automotive electronics, vehicle builders, CEOs, digital marketing and international exports. This year’s program includes the return of popular market-segment-specific tracks presented in partnerships with the Industry Conference of Auto Collision Repair (I-CAR) and the Society of Collision Repair Specialists (SCRS). Here is an example of the array of education sessions available this year.
SEMA Show Education Sessions
Seamless Visual Integration of Modern Electronics in Vehicles
- Tuesday, November 2, 1:00 p.m.–2:00 p.m.
This informative session takes attendees through many design ideas and concepts that can differentiate your installation work and appeal to high-end clientele. Serviceable interior and trim panels are an essential element to this session. Creating shapes that emulate the vehicle’s design cues and essentially blend the electronics to seem as if factory installed is also covered. Choices of interior materials, sanitary wiring techniques, tips to speed up interior fabrication and more are all part of this can’t-miss educational session.
Marketing Shifts—Life After the Golden Age of Print
- Monday, November 1, 12:30 p.m.–1:30 p.m.
A team of digital, influencer and automotive marketing experts will help you navigate our industry’s changing landscape of print. Learn about digital opportunities and how to tell your story, build a brand, and find customers using today’s tools. Expect a lively Q&A session as well.
Car Building: More Than Just a Vehicle
- Monday, November 1, 3:00 p.m.– 4:00 p.m.
This session will go through the custom car-building business process from start to finish. From scheduling, budgeting, tracking and invoicing, to renderings, plans and communications—see what it takes to build a car without touching the car. Hear some lessons learned along with do’s and don’ts from one builder to another.
I-CAR Education at the 2021 SEMA Show
SEMA Education is pleased to partner with the Inter-Industry Conference on Auto Collision Repair (I-CAR) to bring quality seminars to the collision-repair sector. I-CAR conferences are “pay-to-attend” and pre-registration at www.SEMAShow.com/education is required. The following are just several of the many I-CAR sessions to choose from.
Capturing Quality Photos
- Wednesday, November 3, 1:00 p.m.–4:00 p.m.
Improve photography techniques! Students will photograph images of actual vehicles in a shop environment. They will participate in seven activities to provide hands-on practice using their own equipment, including a camera, tablet or smartphone. Students will develop techniques to maximize lighting, angles and distance in their collision-repair photography.
- Tuesday, November 2, 9:00 a.m.–12:00 p.m.
This seminar is designed to provide an understanding of sectioning, how to prepare a part for sectioning, how to determine sectioning locations, cutting and welding techniques, full-frame sectioning considerations, and completing the repair. (A recommended course to take prior to the SEMA course is Training and Certification: Steel Sectioning.)
The Art and Science of Estimator Interactions
- Wednesday, November 3, 9:00 a.m.–12:00 p.m., and Thursday, November 4, 1:00 p.m.–4:00 p.m.
This conference is an exploration of the estimator role. Participants will discuss the practical applications of the estimator’s workflow as well the soft skills required for effective communication with co-workers, customers and the insurance company representatives.
SCRS Repairer Driven Education Series
From advanced driver-assistance systems (ADAS) to electrification, new vehicle technologies are developing rapidly, and collision-repair professionals are at the tip of the spear in dealing with them. No wonder industry organizations like the Society of Collision Repair Specialists (SCRS) are placing an emphasis on education and partnering with the SEMA Show to deliver high-level learning programs to the sector. Below are examples of just some of the SCRS sessions scheduled for the Show.
Be Memorable: Uncover Hidden Value for Your Customer in Their Claim
- Tuesday, November 2, 9:30 a.m.-11:30 a.m.
Get ready for an education in overlooked services that will significantly help your customers but cost you nothing. Learn how to make the negative experience of an accident into one that your customer will thank you for and make them recommend your shop to others.
Shops that suggest cost-free services experience repeat customers. With zero cost to the bodyshop and no upfront cost to the customer, you will experience free marketing with these services as well as a loyal customer base.
Glue Pull Repair–Pull to Paint and Beyond!
- Tuesday, November 2, 9:30 a.m.–11:30 a.m.
Defining, demonstrating and developing an understanding of the full capability of GPR—up to full paintless dent repair. Find out whether the limitations are in the system or in the technical approach. This presentation will include both case-study review and hands-on instruction.
IDEAS Collide Showcase
- Friday, November 5, 10:30 a.m.–12:30 p.m.
The IDEAS Collide Showcase is a one-of-a-kind event featuring 10 fast-paced presentations designed to stimulate thought, innovation and resolution of business challenges with brash, outspoken and provoking concepts from thought leaders both in and out of the industry.
Audience members will be intrigued by individuals and companies with an eye on the future, willing to take center stage with innovative ideas, business models and concepts that have the potential to revolutionize the future of the collision-repair industry. Topics could rattle the status quo with ambitious ideas that have a transformative effect on the industry, or offer conceptual keys to resolving existing market challenges, business considerations, resources or solutions that stem from great minds and efforts.
Bonus Event: The RDE After-Party
- Thursday, November 4, 9:00 p.m.–11:59 p.m., Westgate
Don’t miss the premier collision industry networking event of Show week. Aside from education, networking is one of the key benefits attendees gain from attending events such as the SEMA Show. This evening event provides unique experiences in some of the most sought-after Vegas locations, and has become a fixture of the Show for high-profile individuals within the collision-repair communities. Tickets are limited, and early registration is encouraged.
To view the entire 2021 SEMA Show Education program online visit