Category Archives: News

HTSA 2014 Vendor Awards

HTSA Honors Top Vendors of 2014

Showcasing innovation, drive and dedication to the custom integration channel, Dan Paulson of Paulson’s Audio Video and VIA’s Evan Marty recognized with first-ever Future Leaders Award.

Barrington, IL – October 23, 2014 – The Home Technology Specialists of America (HTSA) is proud to announce the winners of their 2014 HTSA Vendor Awards. The annual awards honor those who have displayed commitment to growth through the development of industry-leading products and technologies, exemplary business practices, and unwavering support for both members and the channel.

“Each year we look forward to recognizing those Vendors who have gone above and beyond to empower Members with the support and resources needed to facilitate real growth throughout the year,” said Bob Hana, managing director of HTSA. “We’ve partnered with premium manufacturers who not only arm our specialty retailers and integrators with world-class solutions, but also work hard to collaborate on all aspects of Member business; including product training, marketing and lead generation. It’s through their ongoing support that our Members continue to thrive.”

New this year, HTSA established the Future Leaders Award, which recognizes business professionals within the organization who have pushed the limits, challenged traditional strategies and shown dedication to improving not only themselves but also their businesses. Both Dan Paulson of Paulson’s Audio Video and Evan Marty of VIA International took home this prestigious award. Dan has helped usher his family’s business into the digital era, adopting new marketing tactics and embracing the importance of SEO, SEM and social media. Working alongside HTSA Authorized Service Provider, Netsertive, Dan has helped Paulson’s harvest fresh business leads while increasing the company’s bottom line. Additionally, Evan, an industry veteran, plays an integral role in helping consumers understand the importance of the network. As the Director of IT and Technology for VIA International, Evan works to ensure that each VIA integrated system is reliable, easy to use, and delivers the maximum performance relative to each client’s budget.

“Both Dan and Evan have displayed their expertise and have proven to be extremely valuable components of the HTSA network,” said Hana. “Each has found new ways to deliver consistent results to their customers while continuing to drive their individual companies forward; both Dan and Evan are key people to watch as they will undoubtedly continue to impress.”

HTSA is also proud to name Sony as its Vendor of the Year for 2014. From their continued development of premium home electronics, to their commitment to improve the dealer and integrator experience, Sony has made this a landmark year for HTSA.

“Our partners at Sony have provided the entire organization with game-changing new products that have kept our sales and partnerships growing over the past year,” said Hana. “Their efforts to create and solidify new relationships with our specialty retailers and integrators has not gone unnoticed and we are anxiously awaiting to see what they have in store for 2015.”

Golden Ear Triton One was named Best Audio Product thanks to its highly dynamic sound quality and craftsmanship; while the Savant Smart Platform was named Best Integration Product.

The following vendors and service providers were also recognized at the HTSA Fall 2014 Conference, both for product-related achievements and for contributing and supporting HTSA at the highest levels:

  • Pakedge – Technology Innovation Award, W8 WAP
  • Future Automation – Technology Innovation Award, Motorized Mounts
  • SONY – Best Video Product, 4K Projectors
  • Harman Luxury Group – Most Profitable Vendor
  • Liberty AV Solutions – Most Supportive Vendor
  • Caster Communications, Inc. – Marketing Innovation Award

Each year HTSA concludes its awards celebration by recognizing one individual that has greatly exceeded their role within the organization, providing immeasurable support, fresh business ideas and promoting a collaborative spirit amongst members and vendors. Keith Haas of Integra was named HTSA’s 2014 Person of the Year.

To learn more about the Home Technology Specialists of America, please visit www.htsa.com.

About Home Technology Specialists of America
Home Technology Specialists of America (HTSA) is a national association of specialty retailers and custom integrators, who design, specify and install premier residential and commercial electronic systems. Ranging from home automation and media rooms to lighting control systems and multi-room audio, today’s digital living environments demand a specialist who helps connect the products in the home, at work or on the go, simply and correctly, while maximizing their performance. Join the conversation on Twitter or becoming a fan on Facebook.

Press Contact
Caster Communications 401-792-7080
Kimberly Lancaster klancaster@castercomm.com
Kelly Ahern kahern@castercomm.com

HTSA Adds new Member Benefits

HTSA Adds New Member Benefits

Expanding upon the tools and services available to specialty retailers and integrators, national buying group announces partnerships with Porte Brown, Sandler Training and 435 Digital, a Tribune Publishing Company

Barrington, IL – October 21, 2014 at 4:00pm EST – The Home Technology Specialists of America (HTSA), announced today a roster of new benefits made accessible to the group’s retail and integration members. From financial analysis and corporate training to enriched organic SEO programs, HTSA is providing real tools with real value, giving members what they need right now to fuel business growth.

“As an organization it’s important for us to not only listen and share ideas, but to act.” Said Bob Hana, Managing Director of HTSA. “As the industry’s only member-owned buying group, we take our membership’s needs seriously. Whether it’s a demand for expanded business tools or interest in bolstered web design and content services, we deliver.”

Porte Brown to Offer Financial Consultation
Porte Brown LLC, a full service accounting and consulting firm, has signed on as an HTSA Authorized Service Provider, offering complete financial and business reporting for members. Services will include annual fiscal year audits, sales-to-payroll comparisons, and broader business consulting that will empower members to set goals for years to come while determining when to add new hires, strategically plan the addition of new lines and more. Leveraging proprietary tools and resources, Porte Brown will provide members with a comprehensive analysis of their financial footing while running data against industry standards and benchmarks. By uncovering new areas of business and highlighting growth opportunities, Porte Brown will arm HTSA members with the knowledge and financial insight needed to take their businesses to the next level.

Sales and Corporate Strategy from Sandler Training
Keeping retailers and integrators abreast of the most effective sales and management protocols, Sandler Training will be developing custom training programs exclusive to HSTA members. At the foundation of each program is Sandler’s Core Competencies, a unique sales and management development methodology designed for sustainable, long-term success. HTSA members will have access to sales training support, reinforcement coaching, accountability standards and more, all aimed at strengthening the way in which teams find, sell and keep customer leads.

435 Digital Spearheads a New Class of Web Development
With the home technology marketplace constantly shifting, it’s more important than ever that CE retailers and integrators establish their digital presence. Knowing that a company’s website acts as their ‘digital front door’, HTSA has continued to support strategic web, SEO and content initiatives and is doing so once again with the addition of 435 Digital to its list of HTSA Authorized Service Providers. 435 Digital, Tribune Publishing’s Digital Services arm, specializes in a variety of services ranging from SEO and social media strategy to web design, development, and more. With an intense knowledge for what a good website entails – responsiveness, lead generation, organic SEO – the 435 Digital team will lead the next wave of member website development. HTSA members will work cooperatively with 435 Digital to develop a world-class website that not only infuses their personality but dramatically improves their organic digital presence. New site roll-outs are expected to begin in Q1 2015.

“HTSA helps our membership grow by providing unparalleled tools,” added Hana. “Tools that enable them to best manage and market their businesses. We are proud to be leading the way in offering our members fully supported benefits that matter and make a true difference to their bottom line.”

To learn more about The Home Technology Specialists of America and member benefits, please visit www.htsa.com.

About Home Technology Specialists of America
Home Technology Specialists of America (HTSA) is a national association of specialty retailers and custom integrators, who design, specify and install premier residential and commercial electronic systems. Ranging from home automation and media rooms to lighting control systems and multi-room audio, today’s digital living environments demand a specialist who helps connect the products in the home, at work or on the go, simply and correctly, while maximizing their performance. Join the conversation on Twitter or becoming a fan on Facebook.

Press Contact
Caster Communications 401-792-7080
Kimberly Lancaster klancaster@castercomm.com
Kelly Ahern kahern@castercomm.com

HTSA Welcomes ACT Tech, Sound Experience

Home Technology Specialists of America Expands National Reach with New Members, Additional Locations

National buying group adds ACT Technologies and Sound Xperience, further growing its network of home technology pros.

Barrington, IL – October 10, 2014 – The Home Technology Specialists of America (HTSA) are pleased to welcome new members, ACT Technologies and Sound Xperience. With a commitment to delivering an unparalleled experience to clients, both companies boast a wealth of experience in designing and installing scalable electronics systems including: audio/video and home theater, lighting control, security, IT as well as a broad range of home automation solutions.

Built from an elite team of experts, focused on networking, A/V, automation and control systems, is the Nashville, Tennessee-based, ACT Technologies. ACT Technologies is the latest division created by ACT Security, a leader in concierge-level security, surveillance and fire safety solutions, and was designed to help magnify the offerings of its parent company, while better serving the custom technology needs of the residential and commercial markets. With a rich history in security and surveillance verticals as well as the unique technical expertise granted by former Apple employees, ACT Technologies utilizes its extensive knowledge to bring clients the most sought-after automation features and functionality including secure, remote access to their homes and businesses. Enabling customers with the ability to view security cameras from their phones or control their lights, shades and climate from anywhere in the world is just the start for ACT Technologies; the team of home tech pros handles it all from advanced Wi-Fi networks to whole-house audio, integrating streaming services and more.

“For us it’s more than just installing product; it’s about customer empowerment.” Said Matt Grant, Director of Technologies for ACT Technologies. “From helping our clients get more out of their iPhones and iPads to designing some of the most complex and technically sound home theater and automation systems, ACT Technologies has become a trusted resource for guiding individuals through today’s high-tech maze.”

Joining the HTSA family alongside ACT Technologies, is the Philadelphia, Pennsylvania-based Sound Xperience. Lead by longtime industry vet, Paul Sandquist, Sound Xperience provides the region with a skilled resource for premium A/V systems. Complete with the finest installers and systems designers, the team delivers affordable home technology solutions combined with the friendly, personable service one can only get with an independently owned A/V company. Sound Xperience covers the gamut, offering best in class home theater installation, surround sound and whole-home audio solutions, outdoor entertainment systems, networking, smart home control, automated lighting, shades and more. With a team whose experience extends over 25+ years in the A/V industry, Sound Xperience brings an intense passion and appreciation for all things high-tech.

“We believe that you don’t have to spend big to go big,” said Paul Sandquist, owner of Sound Xperience. “We pride ourselves on providing customers with truly premium audio, video and home automation solutions, available at any budget. With longstanding manufacturer relationships, a keen eye for design and detail as well as top-shelf customer service, Sound Xperience is turning home tech dreams into a reality.”

Forging a bond within the HTSA network, both ACT Technologies and Sound Xperience are intimately aligned with a variety of core HTSA Vendors including Sony, Savant, Control4 and Bowers & Wilkins, among others.

“Connected home, smart home, ‘Internet of Things’ – these phrases are here to stay. The benefits and convenience of a fully-integrated space are what today’s consumers crave, making it critical that we align ourselves with the professionals who excel in the CE space,” said Bob Hana, Managing Director of HTSA. “We are thrilled to join forces with ACT Technologies and Sound Xperience, both have a proven track record for success, including a multitude of experience selling and servicing technologies that matter most; from IT and security to multi-room A/V and control systems. We welcome their fresh perspectives, ideas and contributions to organization-wide initiatives; their enthusiasm will be a valued addition to our network.

In addition to the new members, HTSA is excited to announce that Electronic Integration of Colorado is extending its reach to serve the technology needs of the greater Minneapolis region. Roger Koehler, president of EIC, has launched a strategic partnership with Alex Lelchuk of Lelch AV, transforming their St. Louis Park, MN venue into EIC’s second business location. Operating as Lelch AV, Koehler, Lelchuk and the integration team will bring specialized knowledge and experience designing custom engineered home theater and whole home automation systems to a new market of consumers.

To learn more about ACT Technologies, please visit www.acttech.net.

To learn more about Sound Xperience, please visit soundxperience.com.

To learn more about Electronic Integration of Colorado, please visit http://eiexperts.com/.

To learn more about The Home Technology Specialists of America and member benefits, please visit www.htsa.com.

About Home Technology Specialists of America
Home Technology Specialists of America (HTSA) is a national association of specialty retailers and custom integrators, who design, specify and install premier residential and commercial electronic systems. Ranging from home automation and media rooms to lighting control systems and multi-room audio, today’s digital living environments demand a specialist who helps connect the products in the home, at work or on the go, simply and correctly, while maximizing their performance. Join the conversation on Twitter or becoming a fan on Facebook.

Press Contact
Caster Communications 401-792-7080
Kimberly Lancaster klancaster@castercomm.com
Kelly Ahern kahern@castercomm.com

HTSA Marketing Summit III Recap

Third Annual HTSA Marketing Summit Delivers the Ultimate Playbook for Blended Traditional and Digital Marketing Campaigns

Home technology specialists gathered in Chicago to discuss everything from SEO, SEM, and content creation to email marketing, social media strategies and traditional advertising, all aimed at increasing the reach and authority of specialty integrators and retailers.

Barrington, IL – July 18, 2014 – The Home Technology Specialists of America (HTSA) convened in Chicago earlier this week for a series of marketing-specific seminars, discussions and collaborative workshops designed to help members capitalize on this year’s tremendous momentum, while furthering leveraging innovative marketing tactics that breathe new life into consumer outreach and lead generation campaigns.

Speakers, representing major influencers from Google to Houzz, met with HTSA Members and Vendor partners, sharing best practices, advanced strategies and statistics regarding the successful use of traditional and digital marketing tools. The three-day HTSA Marketing Summit III concluded yesterday with success sharing and an overview of the various HTSA-supported marketing services available to Members and Vendors.

A Fresh Look at Organic SEO & Content Creation
Ian Wynne, co-founder of Sasquatch Marketing, kicked off the conference with his keynote address, which took a deeper look at the intricacies of organic SEO. “You have 2.5 seconds to capture someone’s attention before they go onto the next search, “ Wynne stressed the importance of website credibility and authority, reminding attendees that each company website acts as a digital front door, greeting and acting as a first impression for potential customers. “There is no this or that, there needs to be balance,” Wynne added while addressing the need for a blended marketing strategy that effectively combines organic SEO, paid search marketing, social media and genuine content creation. Wynne’s presentation was packed with metrics, tips and proven best practices surrounding link structure, blog architecture and the value of integrating social media platforms within your SEO program. The session ignited conversation amongst HTSA Members and Vendors who agreed that search success comes from thinking like your customer thinks and speaking like your customer speaks.

Client Path to Purchase, Conversion Opportunities for Integrators
Striving to keep members abreast of the ever-changing world of digital marketing, HTSA Authorized Service Provider, Netsertive, hosted a number of sessions that broke down advancements in search ads, email campaigns, mobile and more. Netsertive Director of Technology Solutions, Jamie Sasser, began by challenging HTSA Members and Vendors to consider what’s working and what’s not. “Where are you going to invest your time?” he asked, before highlighting the top traditional marketing tactics currently utilized by HTSA Members. From in-store events, referral incentives and radio ads, Sasser also took a closer look at top internet marketing tools including email campaigns, search ads, display ads and social media, highlighting how HTSA Members are securing conversions with the help of collaborative marketing efforts supported by HTSA Vendors and the Netsertive platform.

Netsertive Sr. Marketing Manager, Tim McLain, followed suite sharing the leading best practices for email marketing as well as integrator-specific advice for being visible and securing qualified leads online. McLain energized attendees, daring Members and Vendors to “think like a freak” this week and beyond; “redefine the problem, reject artificial limits, think differently.” With approximately 175B Google searches per month, Netsertive armed HTSA Members and Vendors with key tactics and programs to help these brands break above the noise to be heard, found and generate new business.

Aside from special guest speakers, attendees were treated to a variety of presentations from their peers including, customized sessions offering tips for effective event promotion, best practices for creating project business demand as well as advice for becoming a “master networker”.

Overall, throughout the three-day summit members were given the opportunity to directly collaborate, learn from one another’s marketing successes as well as absorb a wealth of knowledge from cutting-edge marketers. The message was clear – embrace and leverage both traditional and digital marketing strategies, while leveraging the abundance of resources and support provided by the HTSA family. “For HTSA, it’s not just important that profits are being generated, but that the enthusiasm continues to be generated and is infectious,” concluded Hana. “Together we have the ability to drive the market as our organization remains a stealthy, educated, marketing engine.”

Additionally, HTSA announced the dates of its upcoming 2014 Fall Conference, scheduled to take place October 21 – 23, 2014 at the Sofitel Water Tower Hotel, Chicago IL. Registration is now open; for Member registration click here, for Vendor registration click here, for Media registration click here.

To learn more about The Home Technology Specialists of America, please visit www.htsa.com.

About Home Technology Specialists of America
Home Technology Specialists of America (HTSA) is a national association of specialty retailers and custom integrators, who design, specify and install premier residential and commercial electronic systems. Ranging from home automation and media rooms to lighting control systems and multi-room audio, today’s digital living environments demand a specialist who helps connect the products in the home, at work or on the go, simply and correctly, while maximizing their performance.

Home Technology Specialists of America Enhances Reach Across Midwest, Welcomes New Member, Sound & Vision

Serving the home technology needs of three-key Ohio markets, Sound & Vision brings 13 years of dedication, passion and superior customer service to the HTSA network.

Barrington, IL – July 8, 2014 –The Home Technology Specialists of America (HTSA) are pleased to add new member, Sound & Vision, to their growing network of qualified, skilled professionals. Offering a deeply rooted history, rich with experience in designing and installing scalable systems, Sound & Vision features the area’s best selection of quality audio/video products, including diverse smart home solutions such as: one-touch home theater, multi-room music, smart lighting, advanced temperature control and automated security.

Founded in 2002, the Cuyahoga Falls, Ohio-based, Sound & Vision, serves the greater Akron, Cleveland and Columbus markets, providing area consumers easy access to knowledgeable design and installation staff who specialize in smart home technology, whole house audio/video distribution and home cinema systems. With three fully-equipped Ohio showrooms, customers are invited to experience the next level of quality and performance – allowing homeowners to explore and “play” with a variety of solutions perfect for new home building, remodeling or even updating the technology within an existing room. With a specially-trained team of professional installers, Sound & Vision works with every client directly to meet needs, exceed expectations and ensure each project runs smoothly. Overall, Sounds & Vision takes pride in providing the highest level of craftsmanship, working within budgets to get the job done on time; customer service qualities that resonate with all HTSA Members.

“We strive to deliver complete home technology systems that truly enhance the lives of our customers; from the simplest hook-up to a whole-home design and build, our technicians have the training and experience to get the job done right.” Said Mike Woods, President of Sound & Vision. “It’s important to us that we partner with an organization that holds itself to this same standard, exemplifying quality, creativity and forward thinking. HTSA has proven to be just such an essential partner so as we continue to grow our business, we are thrilled to be working with the group, its Vendor Partners and our fellow Members.”

Forging a bond within the HTSA network, Sound & Vision holds key partnerships with a number of leading HTSA Vendors including Bowers & Wilkins, Control4, Integra, JL Audio, Paradigm, Samsung, SONY, Sonance, Sunbrite and more.

“Sound & Vision joins HTSA with an impressive background, reputation, and dedication to success, making Mike and his team a valuable asset to the CE marketplace and our membership,” said Bob Hana, Managing Director of HTSA. “As an organization, we are constantly in search of fresh perspectives, new ideas, and Members who actively and eagerly contribute to our creative synergy. We are thrilled to join forces with Sound & Vision; their experience and enthusiasm will certainly be a valued addition to our network.”

To learn more about Sound & Vision, please visit www.soundandvisionohio.com.

To learn more about The Home Technology Specialists of America and member benefits, please visit www.htsa.com.

About Home Technology Specialists of America

Home Technology Specialists of America (HTSA) is a national association of specialty retailers and custom integrators, who design, specify and install premier residential and commercial electronic systems. Ranging from home automation and media rooms to lighting control systems and multi-room audio, today’s digital living environments demand a specialist who helps connect the products in the home, at work or on the go, simply and correctly, while maximizing their performance. Join the conversation on Twitter or becoming a fan on Facebook.

Press Contact

Caster Communications 401-792-7080
Kimberly Lancaster klancaster@castercomm.com
Kelly Ahern kahern@castercomm.com 

Home Technology Specialists of America Expands as It Welcomes Two New Members

Further growing its network of home technology specialists, Epic Audio Video and Hanson Audio Video will bring a passion for system integration and retail to HTSA.

Barrington, IL – February 25, 2014 – The Home Technology Specialists of America (HTSA) are pleased to welcome their newest members, Epic Audio Video and Hanson Audio Video. Both companies offer a deeply rooted history, rich with experience in designing and installing scalable systems including audio/visual, lighting control, and a broad range of home automation solutions.

The Naples, Florida-based, Epic Audio Video, has 25-years experience in creating and servicing large integrated systems with a rare combination of engineers, systems designers, and installers that can provide creative designs; priding itself on recognizing the special care and attention to detail needed when building one’s dream home. Most recently with an increased need for high end retail establishments, where customers can personally explore and interact with integrated technologies, Epic Audio Video is filling a much needed gap. The team at Epic Audio Video is carving out their own unique space with a retail storefront geared towards better educating consumers about the possibilities afforded by today’s home technology.

“We strive to deliver complete systems that truly enhance the lives of our customers, guaranteeing that our work is clean, neat, and functions seamlessly.” Said Mike Novak, President of Epic Audio Video. “It was important to us that we partner with an organization that holds itself to this same standard, exemplifying quality. HTSA has proven to be an essential partner as we grow our business, we are thrilled to be working with the group, its Vendor Partners and our fellow Members.”

Joining the HTSA family alongside Epic Audio Video, is the Dayton, Ohio-based Hanson Audio Video. Opening its doors in 1999, Hanson Audio Video was built upon an enthusiasm and appreciation for excellence in two channel hi-fi audio, home theater, and home automation solutions. Dedicated to quality, the team at Hanson Audio Video researches and test products from the finest manufacturers in the world, carefully selecting only those that meet the brand’s high standards for superior performance. Hanson Audio Video also believes strongly in helping customers make educated purchases, rather than simply selling products and services; it’s this consultative approach that has lead the company to establish a world class, nationally recognized showroom that allows Hanson customers to try products first-hand, comparing alternatives in a variety of listening/viewing, helping to ensure the right selection is made.

“Building meaningful relationships is vital to our business, its success, and growth,” said Troy Hanson, CEO of Hanson Audio Video. “Much like the process for selecting a manufacturer partner, we took the time to explore HTSA and what is has to offer. We are thrilled to partner with an organization that presents a wealth of marketing tools, networking opportunities and peer-to-peer benefits, and are looking forward to what this new relationship will bring moving forward.”

Forging a bond within the HTSA network, both Epic Audio Video and Hanson Audio Video are intimately aligned with a variety of key HTSA Vendors including Paradigm, Bowers & Wilkins, Meridian, Leon, Stewart Filmscreen, Savant, URC, Control4, Lutron, SONY and more.
“Both Epic Audio Video and Hanson Audio Video come with an impressive background, reputation, and dedication to success, making them valuable pieces to the CE marketplace and the HTSA membership as a whole,” said Bob Hana, Managing Director of HTSA. “As an organization, we are constantly in search of fresh perspectives, new ideas, and Members who can contribute to our creative synergy. We are eager to join forces with Epic Audio Video and Hanson Audio Video; their energy will certainly be a valued addition to our network.”

To learn more about Epic Audio Video, please visit www.epicavsystems.com.

To learn more about Hanson Audio Video, please visit www.hansonav.com.

To learn more about The Home Technology Specialists of America and member benefits, please visit www.htsa.com.

About Home Technology Specialists of America

Home Technology Specialists of America (HTSA) is a national association of specialty retailers and custom integrators, who design, specify and install premier residential and commercial electronic systems. Ranging from home automation and media rooms to lighting control systems and multi-room audio, today’s digital living environments demand a specialist who helps connect the products in the home, at work or on the go, simply and correctly, while maximizing their performance. Join the conversation on Twitter or becoming a fan on Facebook.

Press Contact

Caster Communications 401-792-7080
Kimberly Lancaster klancaster@castercomm.com
Kelly Ahern kahern@castercomm.com 

HTSA Names Dennis Burger Editor-in-Chief of HDLiving.com

Poised to deliver powerful industry insight, comprehensive product reviews, and a sleek site redesign, HDLiving aims to educate consumers about how technology is integrated into their homes.

Barrington, IL – December 17, 2013 – The Home Technology Specialists of America (HTSA) is proud to announce Dennis Burger, a longtime industry writer, as editor-in-chief of the organization’s online magazine, HDLiving.com. Burger will be responsible for the e-zine’s content, including in-depth product reviews, installation case studies, and educational features, helping consumers to better understand and explore the possibilities afforded by home technology.

During his eleven-year tenure as a trusted industry reviewer and reporter, Burger led many key editorial initiatives across the consumer electronics industry. He began his career as a journalist under the tutelage of Brent Butterworth at Robb Report Home Entertainment magazine and most recently served as editor for HomeTechTell, the home technology arm of the Technology Tell Network. For the past four years, he has also been a regular contributor at Residential Systems, which has given him invaluable hands-on experience in the custom installation industry, and most recently he joined the ranks of writers at Home Theater Review.

“This is an exciting day for both HTSA and HDLiving.com,” said Bob Hana, HTSA Managing Director. “Dennis’ dedication and extensive experience serving the consumer electronics community is well known and well appreciated. He has cultivated journalistic relationships with a wealth of leading CE manufacturers, custom integrators, retailers and organizations, which enables him to add real value to the content he produces. As the custom home technology market gains new strength, we are pleased to welcome Dennis and are eager to develop fulfilling content that will help shape the minds and decisions of today’s technology enthusiast.”

“Perhaps owing to both my personal and professional experience, my real passions in the consumer electronics industry lie firmly in the intersection between custom installation and the consumer experience,” Burger said. “HDLiving.com is located right at that intersection. I look forward not only to building a new audience, but also to sharing with that audience my love of the lifestyle enhancements, energy savings, and increased security that come with a professionally designed and integrated smart home.”

The appointment of Burger is just one step in a series of changes HTSA is making to its consumer-facing news outlet. HDLiving.com will also undergo a complete site redesign, breathing new life into its layout, searchability and social media components. Additionally, HTSA plans to enhance the site’s appeal by adding high-definition video capabilities and user-friendly photo galleries, allowing visitors to fully experience the beauty of home technology.

Manufacturers, integrators and retailers interested in sending product news, project case studies or general announcements, can reach Burger at dennis@hdliving.com. He will also be attending 2014 International CES on behalf of HDLiving.com and can be contacted to schedule press appointments for at-show and post-show news coverage.

To learn more about The Home Technology Specialists of America, please visit www.htsa.com.

About Home Technology Specialists of America

Home Technology Specialists of America (HTSA) is a national association of specialty retailers and custom integrators, who design, specify and install premier residential and commercial electronic systems. Ranging from home automation and media rooms to lighting control systems and multi-room audio, today’s digital living environments demand a specialist who helps connect the products in the home, at work or on the go, simply and correctly, while maximizing their performance. Join the conversation on Twitter or becoming a fan on Facebook.

Press Contact

Caster Communications 401-792-7080
Kelly Ahern kahern@castercomm.com 

HTSA Announces 2014 Schedule of Events

Focused on fueling “Contagious Synergy” among home technology specialists and vendor partners, HTSA maps out the year’s events including seasonal conferences, marketing summits, and networking opportunities.

Barrington, IL – January 28, 2014 – The Home Technology Specialists of America (HTSA), released today its year-long calendar of events, which will kick off with the organization’s annual 2014 Spring Conference from Monday, March 24, through Thursday, March 27, at the Scottsdale Resort and Conference Center.

Building off of a successful year, HTSA looks to enhance its current traction with a host of dedicated events in which HTSA Vendors, Members, and Authorized Service Providers can connect, network, and further explore emerging trends and strategies for continued business development. From stronger Vendor-Member collaboration and heightened Member communications to increased integration of new marketing initiatives, HTSA is poised for even further growth and an influential new year.

“In 2012, we were successful in our ‘focused energy’ approach, which allowed us to get back to the basics – evaluating what we were doing well and devoting ourselves to reach new goals,” said Bob Hana, Managing Director of HTSA. “In 2013 we took our strategy yet another step further with ‘creative collaboration’, urging Vendors and Members to think differently about how we can better work together; and now in 2014 we are ready for some serious growth. Our Vendors are committed, are Members are enthusiastic, and we have some innovative new tools and strategies to help propel our businesses and the industry forward.”

“Contagious Synergy”, 2014 HTSA Schedule of Events

Alongside the HTSA Spring 2014 Conference, the organization has also detailed out the dates and locations for upcoming summits and networking sessions:

  • 2014 Spring Conference; March 24 – 27, 2014
    Scottsdale Resort & Conference Center, Scottsdale, AZ 
  • Marketing Summit III; July 15 – 17, 2014
    Hyatt Regency O’Hare, Rosemont, IL 
  • CEDIA 2014 HTSA-Sponsored Events; September 9, 2014
    Members Meeting; 12:00 – 5:00pm
    Networking Cocktail Reception; 6:00 – 8:30pm
    Marriott City Center, Denver, CO 
  • 2014 Fall Conference; October 21 – 23, 2014
    Sofitel Water Tower Hotel, Chicago, IL

Registration for the 2014 HTSA Spring Conference is now open to HTSA Vendors and members.

To learn more about The Home Technology Specialists of America and member benefits, please visit www.htsa.com .

About Home Technology Specialists of America

Home Technology Specialists of America (HTSA) is a national association of specialty retailers and custom integrators, who design, specify and install premier residential and commercial electronic systems. Ranging from home automation and media rooms to lighting control systems and multi-room audio, today’s digital living environments demand a specialist who helps connect the products in the home, at work or on the go, simply and correctly, while maximizing their performance. Join the conversation on Twitter or becoming a fan on Facebook.

Press Contact

Caster Communications 401-792-7080
Kimberly Lancaster klancaster@castercomm.com
Kelly Ahern kahern@castercomm.com 

HTSA Conferences Approved For CEDIA CEUs

Annually, an HTSA Member that is a CEDIA Certified Professional can now attain up to 4 Continuing Education Units towards their 10 CEU renewal requirement by attending HTSA Conferences/Summits.

Barrington, IL – October 21, 2013 – The Home Technology Specialists of America (HTSA) announced today that they are the first industry buying association with a curriculum that has been approved by CEDIA for Continuing Education Units (CEU) towards the CEDIA Professional Certification program.

Partnering closely with CEDIA, HTSA is the first buying association to be able to offer CEU credits for attending the HTSA conferences and summits. Each CEDIA Certified HTSA member can now receive 2 CEU credits per 2-day meeting attended, acquiring up to 4 of the 10 CEU credits needed annually, to meet the 30 CEU requirement for certification renewal over 36 months. HTSA will award each member with a certificate at the conclusion of each conference to document the member’s participation and completion of their continuing education through the HTSA.

“It is our goal to make CEDIA certification as valuable and accessible as possible,” said Jeff Gardner, Director of Technical Training for CEDIA. “By attaching CEU credits to HTSA offerings we are creating a benefit not only to our organizations but also to home technology professionals who are working to maintain their certifications.”

Bob Hana, HTSA Managing Director added, “The certification credit of our conferences is a testament to the quality programming HTSA builds into every session at our events. We have quickly evolved past the historical role of the buying group to an agile, thought-leading, market-driven partner who delivers value built-in to ever service we provide.”

To learn more about The Home Technology Specialists of America, please visit www.htsa.com.

Q&A With HTSA Managing Director Bob Hana

On the second day of the HTSA fall meeting in Chicago, we sat down to talk with the buying group’s managing director, Bob Hana, on the conference, issues facing the industry, and what HTSA members are expecting to face this holiday season:

Q: I just wanted to get your impression of the event and how it’s going so far, and what you’ve been hearing so far.

A: It’s been kind of a continuation of CEDIA. Things have been much more upbeat, both from the member side and also the manufacturer side. It’s kind of positive, as you start to see the economy recover and you start to see their businesses come up. They’re really in a much better mood overall. But as far as the conference specifically, we continue to build more and more value, during our conferences, so that the return on their time and investment is really greatly appreciated by them, and therefore I think they’re enthusiastic to do it, and concentrate to stay focused. And especially this fall one, which is truly about how do we finish the year. Everybody wants to finish the year strong, and [they] have some key things they’d like to push, and to be able to have a venue where they can effectively communicate with each other and talk about that, it’s a good time of year.

Q: In terms of what you’ve heard from people talking, both at this event and from people in general, how do you feel the general mood is? Do you feel like most people’s sales are up?

A: Yes. Most of our members’ sales are up. I think traditional transactional retail is a struggle, and continues to be, and will always continue to be, but the work that they’ve done, even when times were challenging, in trade-to-trade relationships with builders and architects, and the hard work that they’ve done with maintaining their customer base is starting to really pay off, and take traction.

Q: What products and categories are you seeing as bringing growth this year?

A: Home networking is huge. Our business has almost doubled this year in home networking from prior years, which is a testament to the fact of today, you need to own the home network to own the client. Everything as it resides on the network, obviously requires a more robust network. So our average price points are up, the average amount of jobs start with home network now, not an afterthought but as the initial thrust of it so everything can work. So that’s a huge category for us.