Strengthen Your Company Through Community
No matter what niche you're in—rods, restoration, racing, restyling, reps, trucks or wheels and tires—there's a SEMA council or professional network that's right for your company. SEMA councils and networks offer members a variety of market-specific programs and activities designed to provide educational and networking opportunities while promoting their particular industry segment.
|Visit ARMO's website.|
ARMO's Hot Products Showcase will take place April 23–25, 2015, at Spring Carlisle in Carlisle, Pennsylvania.
Registration is now open for the Automotive Restoration Market Organization’s (ARMO) Hot Products Showcase, which will take place April 23–25, 2015, at Spring Carlisle in Carlisle, Pennsylvania.
This event is an opportunity for council members to display one or more products in front of one of the single-largest gatherings of automotive restoration enthusiasts in the world.
In addition to having products on display in the Hot Products tent, a professional photographer will shoot each one. The photos will be available to manufacturers and will also be used in a slideshow at the ARMO booth and reception at the 2015 SEMA Show. A gallery on the ARMO webpage also houses each of the photos, along with a product description for those unable to attend the event. This publicity is available to ARMO members for only the cost of shipping the product entries to the Carlisle Fairgrounds.
Product entries must meet the following criteria:
- Be the product of an ARMO-member company.
- Be available for sale (market-ready) by the opening of the Showcase, April 23.
- Demonstrate unique/innovative technology and/or be a benefit to the restoration industry.
Members can register products by filling out the online application. All applications must be received by April 17, 2015.
Restoration Professionals Gather for Networking at the Hot Product Showcase
ARMO will also host a networking mixer in the Hot Products Tent at the Showcase, Thursday, April 24, from 5:30 p.m.–7:30 p.m. The mixer will be a chance for members to grab a drink and spend some time interacting one-on-one with council leadership and fellow ARMO members. The council leadership believes this event holds enormous potential for new ideas and partnerships as members network with new and old industry friends. RSVP today.
Not an ARMO member? Join today to gain access to this event and other council benefits.
|Visit ETTN's website|
Applications are being accepted now through March 16 for a second ETTN Professional Development Program. The Internet Retailer Conference and Exhibition (IRCE), will take place June 3–4, 2015, in Chicago. On its own, the costs associated with this conference could prove prohibitive for members, but through ETTN, participants receive a specially negotiated registration rate, and the company of the participating employee receives a $500 grant from SEMA to assist with registration (all benefits received are considered taxable income). IRCE, a two-day conference, originally cost $1,095. Combining the negotiated rate and SEMA grant, ETTN members save 80% and pay only $216 for registration.
IRCE is in its 11th year and is largely considered to be a flagship event of the e-commerce industry. Each year, more than 10,000 attendees travel to Chicago to hear from more than 200 expert speakers representing all areas of the industry. This year, exciting speakers include top executives from Target, 1-800-Flowers.com, QVC and more. In addition to the educational opportunities, the 250,000 sq.-ft. exhibit hall presents more than 600 companies in the e-commerce solutions industry.
Applicants may be selected to attend one of three conferences in 2015, along with SEMA staff and a group of nine other network members. The first conference selected was the Social Media Strategies Summit, which will take place in Las Vegas, February 10–12. Later in the year, a third group of members will learn customer service and engagement skills at the Disney Quality Service course.
|Visit HRIA's website|
By Amanda Gubbins
In January, the Hot Rod Industry Alliance (HRIA) transitioned to new leadership, with John McLeod leading the charge as chairman. McLeod is the owner of Classic Instruments, based in Boyne City, Michigan, a manufacturer and seller of custom instrumentation for automobiles and boats. Before entering the automotive industry, McLeod was a police officer for 16 years.
McLeod’s right hand for the next two years will be Tammy Holland, who was recently appointed chair-elect. Holland has been with the COMP Performance Group for 17 years and is currently in sales and communications for the company. She also has several years of council and network experience with SEMA, having served previously as chair of the SEMA Businesswomen’s Network (SBN).
When reflecting on what first drew her to the automotive industry, several experiences come to Holland’s mind.
“I grew up in a little bit of everywhere as a Navy brat. One of the things that we used to do was go mudding. My dad always worked on cars. Probably one of the bigger influences was a date, who took me to a drag race. That was the first real drag race I’d ever been to,” she said.
McLeod and Holland both believe it’s important to make the group open and inviting to newcomers, be they recent graduates or someone getting a later start in the industry. McLeod describes this outreach as an information bridge.
“I call it Futures in Hot Rodding because it’s not just the youth; it’s anybody who is interested in our industry who wants to be part of it.” He continued, “We still need people on the floor, but we also need owners, accountants, sales staff, janitors and assemblers. It really is big and if anybody has an interest in vehicles, we’re interested in you.”
Holland echoed this sentiment, “We both want to get rid of the stereotype that you have to be over a certain age to be a part of the HRIA. No, hot rodding is for every age group.”
An immediate step forward, council members can expect to see some new faces at HRIA’s Education Day, which is held annually at the Detroit Autorama and allows hot rodders and retailers to receive free product training from the manufacturers themselves. For the first time, school instructors and their top students are invited. In the future, McLeod also hopes to make the content available to members who are not able to make the trip to Detroit. For now, Education Day registration is open, and members are invited to learn more on HRIA's webpage.
McLeod believes attending Education Day is a first step in making the most of council membership, “We really need people to get involved. We’ve had too many people sitting on the sidelines for too long. We all need to start throwing in and growing our industry.”
|Visit TORA's website.|
By Clayton Drescher
Members of SEMA’s Truck and Off-Road Alliance (TORA) and professionals in the light-truck industry are invited to a happy hour and TORA mixer at the Slippery Noodle Inn, Indiana’s oldest bar, Monday, March 2, from 6:00 p.m.–8:30 p.m. The Slippery Noodle is just around the corner from the Indiana Convention Center, host to the NTEA Work Truck Show that week.
This is a great opportunity for local members and those in town for the NTEA Show to network, unwind, grab a bite and a drink, and learn about what SEMA and TORA are doing to strengthen and support the light-truck industry. The elected volunteer leaders of the TORA Select Committee will be there to hear input from membership about upcoming strategic planning meetings and answer questions regarding the council’s activities.
All professionals in any aspect of the light-truck industry interested in learning more about SEMA and TORA are invited to attend the event. Questions? Contact Clayton Drescher at 909-978-6696 or RSVP online.