March '21

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40 THE SHOP MARCH 2021 D eciding to sell and install Advanced Driver-Assistance System (ADAS) products is a serious commitment, as customers expect the components to work seamlessly and flawlessly to provide them an edge against unexpected driving hazards. Important training is required to under- stand what the products can and can't do, as well as what it takes to integrate them into various vehicles. There are also some basics that shops should consider before entering the market. To help, product suppliers offer introduc- tory recommendations for retailers and installers wondering what it takes to survive and thrive in this promising area of the aftermarket. DON'T BE PUT OFF BY FEARS OF PRICE OR DIFFICULTY Yes, ADAS products may be new to you, your installers and your customers. However, objections to offering them based on installation dif- ficulty or the costs of effective solutions are quickly being refuted, says Bob Goodman, director, channel sales for Accele Elec- tronics in Santa Fe Springs, California. "ADAS product costs and installation times have gone down in recent years," he reports. As an example, Jason Anderson, VP of product research and development for Metra Electronics in Holly Hill, Florida, points to his company's latest parking sensor kit. "iBEAM's newest solutions are fast and easy to install," he reveals. "The TE-2PSK kit calibrates with the push of a button." DO PLAN ON TAKING TIME TO EXPLAIN THE PRODUCTS As a new product niche, busi- nesses may underestimate the time and effort required to get customers— retail and dealership—up to speed and comfortable with ADAS components and their many features. "A mistake aftermarket shops make is not thoroughly explaining and demonstrating the benefits, operation and functionality of the products," Goodman says. That includes informing owners of older vehicles and used car dealers of the pos- sibilities, says Aron Demers, senior vice president of Voxx Electronics in Orlando. "A misconception regarding ADAS is that the products are only available on newer cars and cannot be added to older cars that don't have the technology," he says. That's not to say, however, that every component is available for every applica- tion. He suggests salespeople go out to the customer's vehicle in the parking lot "to see what limitations you may have." Also, customer interactions and assis- tance shouldn't stop after the installation is completed, advises Sherry Calkins, vice president of strategic partnerships for Geotab—particularly when dealing with fleet customers. "Overall, some of the most common mistakes that have been noted by Geotab customers and partners include not prop- erly training drivers on the technology, as well as a lack of in-person follow-ups to help ensure drivers continue to stay com- pliant," she says. "As important as these features can be in the quest to assist drivers with increased safety, it is important to properly educate drivers to ensure they are getting the most out of their ADAS systems." If motorists are unaware of a system's features, Calkins continues, it is common for them to turn off or simply ignore any warnings. "This lack of knowledge and under- standing can ultimately hinder the effec- tiveness of the system and potentially decrease the likelihood of improved driving behavior." DO ENHANCE THOSE EXPLANATIONS WITH SHOWROOM DISPLAYS For times when salespeople are tied up in other conversations or cus- The basics of introducing safety systems to your product line. ADAS: Do's & Don'ts By Jef White Get to know product features and benefits, and then share them with your customers. (Photo courtesy Rydeen Mobile Electronics)

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