What Integrators Gain by Visiting Supplier’s Factory

Joe DeMarco of Sound Waves in Gladwyne, Pa., describes how seeing the engineering detail at the James Loudspeaker factory helped him commit to the company’s loudspeakers.

Every integrator at one time or another has taken the time to show a prospective client a meticulously wired equipment rack or presented a stack of detailed documentation to prove to a customer their effective processes and procedures.

Those “behind-the-scenes” glimpses often are contributing factors in why a CE pro was able to close a sale with a homeowner.

Likewise, manufacturers jump at the chance to showcase their precision, quality control, testing and high-quality building materials for integrators during factory visits. And for integrators who take the time to visit the brands that they stake their reputations on, it can be a rewarding experience.

That’s exactly the case with Joe DeMarco, president of Sound Waves Custom Home Integration in Gladwyne, Pa.  A few years ago, DeMarco had a client request for on-wall loudspeakers, but the customer was not pleased with any of the potential speaker options on the market.

“Seeing the factory, seeing how the speakers are built and the work that is being done behind the scenes was pretty impressive.”

— Joe DeMarco, Sound Waves

“I dove in and did my research and came across the Wedge speakers by James Loudspeaker,” recalls DeMarco. The Wedge speakers are designed to tuck up into the eaves or soffit of a home.

That initial meeting led DeMarco to want to learn more about the company.

“Typically, when I start working with a vendor, I value the relationship and I look to learn more to make sure they are a good fit for us, as well as us being a good fit for them. So I traveled out to Napa, California, to their factory and I got the run-through on all their products,” says DeMarco.

“Engineering quality is critical these days, especially when it comes to a loudspeaker company because there are so many out there. It can be hard to choose sometimes which supplier to go with. Seeing the factory, seeing how the speakers are built and the work that is being done behind the scenes was pretty impressive. It was nice to see a group of people caring so much about the product they are putting out there,” remarks DeMarco.

That visit proved fruitful, as Sound Waves now uses James’ Landscape Series, Small Aperture and Omni Series speakers.

So the question is… what suppliers’ factories have you visited and what did you see?

About the Author

Jason Knott
Jason Knott:

Jason Knott is Chief Content Officer for Emerald's Connected Brands. Jason has covered low-voltage electronics as an editor since 1990, serving as editor and publisher of Security Sales & Integration. He joined CE Pro in 2000 and serves as Editor-in-Chief of that brand. He served as chairman of the Security Industry Association’s Education Committee from 2000-2004 and sat on the board of that association from 1998-2002. He is also a former board member of the Alarm Industry Research and Educational Foundation. He has been a member of the CEDIA Business Working Group since 2010. Jason graduated from the University of Southern California.


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