Tired of the Same Old Same Old? Maybe It’s Time for a Change

SEMA News—July 2017


By Craig Schmutzler

Tired of the Same Old Same Old? Maybe It’s Time for a Change

When I was a kid, we had three TV channels. (Okay, four, if you count PBS). Our television weighed a ton, and I served as my father’s remote. The dials were stiff and delivered a loud and satisfying “clack” as I wrestled them into each new position. Eventually, the top dial broke and was replaced with a pair of pliers, perpetually perched atop our set.

I was also responsible for fetching the TV Guide—a weekly catalog of channels, shows and the latest Hollywood gossip—when viewing decisions needed to be made. Occasionally, a channel would become unclear, and I would be sent to the back of the house to grab the antenna and muscle it into another position to remove some of the snow from the picture.

Today, I sometimes feel spoiled. I have hundreds of channels at my disposal, some of which have proven to be true hidden gems. There is no need for me to leave my couch to select another show, and the channel guide miraculously appears on my screen at the touch of a single button. Remarkably, all of this is delivered to me in stunning high-definition clarity—without an antenna.

We have an impressive number of distribution channels in the automotive aftermarket today. Gone are the days of sending paper catalog updates to a handful of warehouses and retailers to ensure that their sales staffs and counter folks had access to the most current product data. Electronic data is king, and it provides an opportunity for manufacturers to deliver product data to tens of thousands of outlets through a single data repository. Despite this availability, many manufacturers have yet to embrace the advantages offered by technological advances in data optimization and delivery methods.

The use of a single, standards-compliant data repository provides incredible flexibility and economy of effort. Updates can be made once and delivered to all data receivers at the click of a button. New distribution channels can be added with almost no additional effort. As a matter of fact, many of these distribution channels are actively seeking new product suppliers. Much like the hundreds of TV channels I have at my disposal, there are likely some true hidden gems out there that can make a significant positive impact on a manufacturer’s business.

Savvy suppliers understand the need to manage data effectively and efficiently. Smart manufacturers are building strategies to intelligently broaden distribution through new productive and profitable channels. The SEMA Data Co-op (SDC) offers a simple and reliable way to store and distribute data to tens of thousands of outlets. It adds several new data receivers every month, and they are on the hunt for new products.

We understand that it can sometimes be difficult to find and manage new distribution channels. Put down the pliers and let the SDC help. We provide you with state-of-the-art tools to access your content and make updates as often as you like so that you can maintain 100% ownership of your product data. Please contact us to see how we can help you. And throw away that antenna. 

To learn more about how you can take control and manage your product data at the lowest possible cost, contact SEMA Data Co-op Membership Manager Allen Horwitz via email at allenh@semadatacoop.org or by phone at 888-958-6698, ext. 9.
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