By Lisa Johnston
New products on display at the American International Toy Fair, held in N
The 12 Volt Initiative steering committee met with member companies, including retailers agreeing to fund the first phase of a plan to raise awareness of car stereo aftermarket products.
According to Larry Rougas, Pioneer marketing and product planning VP for mobile electronics and a member of the committee, the meeting was held during the recent SEMA show, here.
The 12 Volt Initiative hired the Acumen Group, which organized the 12 Volt Summit held this summer, to set up a non-profit organization and to help lay the groundwork, through research or other means, to create an outline of an action plan by International CES in January.
The goal is no longer to simply raise awareness of car stereo, but to create a campaign or other promotion that will also incentivize consumers to buy 12-volt products, Rougas said. He hopes the campaign will launch in the second quarter next year.
"Ultimately we want 12-volt awareness to increase, but it goes deeper. You can have awareness but people may not buy it, so it will go deeper in terms of tactics," he said.
Phase one, up until International CES, will include setting up the organization, doing research, giving direction and establishing objectives. Phase two will be to name the concept and what it will cost to launch it, he said.
Committee members determined that in the current economic state, it is even more imperative that a campaign launch quickly. "We think that it is even more important, now, with these economic conditions, that we need to move forward and implement something sooner rather than later. Ultimately our goal is to have a strategy … by CES and to implement this, if approved, by the second quarter of 2009. This is quite aggressive timing, but we need it," Rougas said.
As at the original 12 Volt Summit held this summer, Rougas said the meeting was positive. "We're all in agreement. We want to make this go forward. There was no hesitation there. Just the aggressive time line of having something done by CES," he said.
The Consumer Electronics Association (CEA) has joined the 12 Volt Initiative steering committee, which now includes: Steve Baldacci, iBiquity; Rob Cummins, Best Buy; Mike Kahn, Sony; Keith Lehmamn, Kenwood; Gabi Mashal, Al & Ed's Autosound; Carl Mathews, Crutchfield: Larry Rougas, Pioneer; Adam Thomas, Clarion; Barry Vogel, MERA; Steve Witt, Alpine; and Jason Oxman. CEA.
This TWICE webinar, hosted by senior editor Alan Wolf, will take a look at what may be the hottest CE products at retail that will be sold during the all-important fourth quarter. Top technologies, market strategies and industry trends will be discussed with industry analysts and executives.