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Restyling & Truck Accessories - May '15

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10 Restyling & tRuck AccessoRies | May 2015 restylingmag.com One of the best ways to create a strong brand and reputation is to put a substantial focus on promotion. For Extreme Audio, that means maintaining a sharp, profes- sional online image. "We focus all of our advertising budget currently to the Internet," says Bartells, who invests the vast majority of his mar- keting budget on a best-in-class website with great content to drive organic search engine results. "Not that other advertising venues can't work, we just believe that Internet content is a gift that keeps on giving," he adds. "We regularly post new content to keep our site fresh. We also re-engage our clients on a regular basis with email to stay top of mind." Online sales of premium mobile audio brands is often off limits because it's viewed as competing with the product manufac- turers but maintaining strong brand images online can still be a critical competitive advantage for retail and install shops. "We certainly sell ourselves, but no direct product sales [online]," Bartells says. While not being able to sell product direct to consumers online could be seen as a challenge, Bartells notes that other macro trends in the industry are playing in the favor of smaller operations like his. For example, the fall in prominence of big box retailers. Even that, though, comes with some nuance. While the reduced competition is a positive, Bartells says that smaller shops benefitted from the promotional power Shop profile Regardless of the product or application—truck, car or boat—Bartells' team follows a rigorous procedure to ensure all work is done to exacting, industry leading standards. Sometimes that's as simple as using seat and floor covers to keep client vehicles clean. Other times, it's using a battery tender feed to ensure a bat- tery stays charged through a long install. Or it's using 3M tape and protec- tive plastic to protect the area of a vehicle the team is working on to avoid scratches or damage. Finally, upon completion of an install, a thorough check-out process includes multiple checks that an install was done correctly and then the staff spends time with the customer to introduce them to the features and function of all the new equipment. "We then follow up a few days later, to ensure everything is working properly and to cover any additional questions that may have come up," Bartells says. This rigorous process produces expert installation results, from the most modest projects to the wildest, Bartells adds. "We're proud of every job we turn out, because to most clients, their vehicle is their baby," he says. "But naturally there are some that are a bit more extravagant, from the classic car builds, to crazy boat builds." One of the most enjoyable recent projects, Bartells says, was actually one for the shop itself: A custom golf cart featuring a host of marine audio products to demo for customers the shop's capabilities in marine audio, which is a small but growing portion of the shop's business. "It's loaded with a slew of Wet Sounds products to demo some of the output possibilities of a boat system, but also easy to transport and take to shows, as well as use in parades," Bartells says, noting the system includes an Alpine head unit, Wet Sounds EQ, five Wet Sounds HT amplifiers, four Wet Sounds co-axles, four Wet Sounds Rev 10 tower speakers, six Alpine 12-inch shallow woofers, and a bank of massive Stinger batteries. What else would you expect from a world record-setting dB Drag com- petitor? "At 3900 watts RMS, this thing is just crazy loud and clean, and really draws attention to say the least," Bartells laughs. "It also features a ton of RGB lighting to really draw attention at night time shows." ExtrEmE AttEntion to DEtAil

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