New York — 4K customers at Video & Audio Center (VAC) can now have their new TVs arrive home before they do.
The expedited deliveries are a benefit of “Platinum Concierge Service,” a new 4K TV service tier that the Los Angeles-based specialty chain is employing to counter online and big-box competition.
The service, along with a standing offer to pay customers’ sales tax on most big-screen TV purchases, supports VAC’s new “webrooming” initiative. That, explained company spokesman and advisor Tom Campbell, seeks to turn showrooming on its ear by drawing traffic to its stores first, and then converting customers through selection, service and competitive prices.
“Our job is to stop them from going back to the web,” Campbell told TWICE. “We overcome the objection, and it’s working.”
He said the under-two-hour deliveries are achieved through VAC’s Just One Touch custom integration division, which provides each of the chain’s three showrooms with trucks and installers. (A fourth location is opening Sept. 18 at the new Village at Westfield Topanga open-air mall.)
He added that the cost of the MAP-permitted sales-tax offer, which was also adopted by Fry’s Electronics, is absorbed by VAC’s massive sales volume.
Campbell, a CE retail veteran and Consumer Electronics Association (CEA) Hall of Fame inductee, announced the new concierge service here yesterday at a CE Week conference session on 4K presentation at retail.
His co-panelist, Robert Zohn, founder/president of Scarsdale, N.Y.-based specialty A/V dealer Value Electronics, said audio also plays a big role in enticing customers, particularly his showroom’s three Dolby Atmos demo rooms.
“Atmos, HDR, wide color gamut, 4K — these are the future technologies of audio and video,” Zohn said. “And the way to experience and learn about that is in your specialty retail store.”
Campbell stressed that “the independent channel is alive and well,” and said dealers need big-box chains and their high-profile platforms to help get the word out about 4K and other new technologies.
“We all benefit from that,” Campbell said. “I say, ‘Thank you Best Buy.’”