Commercial Integrator November 2015 : Page 30

CI RESEARCH: Brand Survey Cross-section of integrators and others in installation space share their feelings on brands they use on the job. The results may surprise you. By D. Craig MacCormack HEN WE LAUNCHED our f irst Commer-cial Integrator Brand Preference Survey and asked people in the integration space to tell us which compa-ny’s products they used and preferred in more than two dozen categories, we truly didn’t know what to expect. We provided a handful of choices in each of the 25 categories for survey respondents to choose, but also left it open for them to fill in their own selections. For the most part, the write-ins earned 1 or 2 percent of a category’s votes, but in other instances, the write-ins cracked the top three, which clearly will help us shape the brand prefer-ence survey for 2016. Many of the results you’ll see were likely 30 | COMMERCIAL INTEGRATOR REVEALS LOYALTIES fairly predictable based on a company’s reputation or word of mouth from your counterparts, but there were definitely a handful of selections that surprised us, so we imagine they’ll surprise you too. For purposes of this analysis, we focused on the top three most mentioned preferred brands in each of the featured catego-ries. We asked respondents to share their brands usage for the past two years over-all, and indicate one “preferred brand” per category. In most cases, the top three in each category matched up, but there were instances where some differences emerged. What will be interesting to monitor as we conduct this survey in future years is how certain product categories fall out of the mix and other product categories — in some cases, products that few are really thinking CI 2015 5 Brand B ra r an d Preference P r f Pr fere eren e r nce re n c e Survey S Su urv urve v ey W about today — emerge as key parts of a job. In case you were wondering, we did not break down the categories into vertical markets. However, when integrators share projects with us now it may be fascinating to track whose products they implement in board rooms, conference rooms, class-rooms, sports bars, hotels, etc., compared with this data. Surely, like most other surveys of this kind, these results will generate plenty of debate, and maybe it’ll get you to think in new ways about products or manufactur-ers you haven’t used in the past. Thanks to the 227 people who responded to our inaugural survey — let us know how you think they did (and if you didn’t partici-pate, there’s always next year), and what we should change for the 2016 edition. commercialintegrator.com November 2015

CI 2015 Brand Preference Survey REVEALS LOYALTIES

D. Craig MacCormack

Cross-section of integrators and others in installation space share their feelings on brands they use on the job. The results may surprise you.

WHEN WE LAUNCHED our first Commercial Integrator Brand Preference Survey and asked people in the integration space to tell us which company’s products they used and preferred in more than two dozen categories, we truly didn’t know what to expect.

We provided a handful of choices in each of the 25 categories for survey respondents to choose, but also left it open for them to fill in their own selections. For the most part, the write-ins earned 1 or 2 percent of a category’s votes, but in other instances, the write-ins cracked the top three, which clearly will help us shape the brand preference survey for 2016.

Many of the results you’ll see were likely fairly predictable based on a company’s reputation or word of mouth from your counterparts, but there were definitely a handful of selections that surprised us, so we imagine they’ll surprise you too.

For purposes of this analysis, we focused on the top three most mentioned preferred brands in each of the featured categories. We asked respondents to share their brands usage for the past two years overall, and indicate one “preferred brand” per category. In most cases, the top three in each category matched up, but there were instances where some differences emerged.

What will be interesting to monitor as we conduct this survey in future years is how certain product categories fall out of the mix and other product categories — in some cases, products that few are really thinking about today — emerge as key parts of a job.

In case you were wondering, we did not break down the categories into vertical markets. However, when integrators share projects with us now it may be fascinating to track whose products they implement in board rooms, conference rooms, classrooms, sports bars, hotels, etc., compared with this data.

Surely, like most other surveys of this kind, these results will generate plenty of debate, and maybe it’ll get you to think in new ways about products or manufacturers you haven’t used in the past. Thanks to the 227 people who responded to our inaugural survey — let us know how you think they did (and if you didn’t participate, there’s always next year), and what we should change for the 2016 edition.

The first category, both alphabetically and in our 2015 CI Brand Preference Survey, proved to be a tightly contested one, with Interlogix emerging at the top of the heap, with support from more than one-quarter of the respondents. Assa Abloy earned kudos of more than 20 percent of the respondents, with IC Realtime falling just short of that mark.

There’s no doubt which company’s products led the way here, with Wilson Electronics earning support from almost two-thirds of those who picked a winner. SureCall and Pixel Technologies engaged in a fierce competition for the second spot, with the former narrowly emerging runner-up.

This category was among those showing a clear leader among the respondents, with Cambridge Sound Management named by almost half of those who filled out the survey. Auralex finished a distant second, with less than half the backing of Cambridge Sound, while Primacoustic rounded out the top three.

Crestron was the clear winner, outdistancing a crowd by garnering almost 30 percent of support from survey respondents. Barco was a distant second among this group, with Kramer the only other company to crack double-digits here.

(Including processors, receivers and scalers): This is another category with a clear-cut first choice, as almost one out of every three survey-takers noted Biamp. Crestron finished with slightly more than half of that support. JBL Professional emerged from a crowded field to finish third, just ahead of another couple of companies under the Harman umbrella, Crown Audio and Harman Kardon.

Three familiar names finished among our top three, but our survey respondents overwhelmingly lean toward Crestron. AMX was the only other company to secure at least 10 percent of the vote, but it was still less than one-fifth of Crestron’s percentage. Extron was the bronze medalist in the category.

We’ve got another clear winner in this category, with BrightSign getting one-third of the votes. LG Electronics and Planar finished neck-and-neck, and for the tiebreaker we used respondents’ percentage of usage in the last two years. (We placed in alphabetical order.)

There were plenty of competitors in this category, but little doubt the company our readers chose as their preferred brand, with JBL grabbing more than one-third of the votes. Tannoy was the only other brand to earn double-digit backing, followed by Electro-Voice in third.

Middle Atlantic earned the backing of almost two out of every three integrators. Marshall Furniture garnered the silver medal here, followed by Lowell Manufacturing, which fell just short of double digits.

We saw Shure emerge here as the clear choice, earning more than half of the votes from our survey respondents. Sennheiser finished a distant second, with almost 20 percent of the vote, and Audio-Technica third with about half of that tally.

This category was dominated by two companies, with SMART Technologies taking the top spot and Da-Lite earning second, and the duo securing almost three-fourths of overall selections. Hitachi rounds out this trio.

This category generated heavy support for two companies, with Lutron earning the top spot and Draper in second, and that pair combining for more than 75 percent of the responses. Crestron crashed the party, earning double-digit support as a write-in choice.

Chief was the big preferred band here, getting the backing of three of every five people in this category. The closest competitor, Peerless-AV, finished with less than one-third of Chief’s support, followed by Premier Mounts, which earned slightly less than 10 percent of the votes.

Our top three in this category had to earn it, with the top spot and third separated by less than 5 percent. SurgeX emerged victorious, but was followed closely by APC in second and Furman in third place.

This category represents the most contentious battle among our 25 categories, with Pakedge and Luxul slugging it out for the top spot. Pakedge wins the tiebreaker leading the pack with 28 percent to Luxul’s 26 percent indicating they’ve used the brand in the past two years.

D-Tools secured more than half of the votes, with Autotask in second but well in the rearview mirror. The top three also includes Simply Reliable, which fell just short of the silver medal.

There’s no mystery here, with Vaddio the only brand to crack double digits in its percentage, but going much further than that with almost two-thirds of the overall vote. Sony was second, with Telemetrics rounding out the group.

This category proved to be the closest from top to bottom, with only 1 percentage point separating first place and third place. Christie took home the honor via tiebreaker, with Digital Projection and Panasonic following just behind.

As was the case in the furniture category, Middle Atlantic made quick work of the competition here, with almost three out of every four respondents choosing them as the best among this group. Chief finished second, but no other company cracked double digits. Lowell Manufacturing earned another third place.

Crestron grabbed more than half of the overall votes in this area. Second-place finisher Atlona was the only other company among our original list to earn double-digit backing, although Extron matched the feat as a write-in.

Many of the companies in this category were bunched together, but Belden ran away from the pack with almost twice as many votes as the next-closest competitor. C2G and West Penn Wire rounded out the top three, but were closely followed by others.

As is true in the marketplace, Polycom and Cisco/Tandberg were tightly in contention with one another, with the former earning the slight edge. Lifesize rounded out the trio, with almost 20 percent.

This is another category with a clear preference in Samsung, which earned almost half of the overall votes, but worthy contenders of top-three status in NEC and LG, both of which cracked double digits. Among the three companies, they earned almost three-quarters of the votes here.

(Including matrix switchers, modulators and extenders): Once again, Crestron was the clear choice, gathering almost half of the overall votes. The winner was joined by Kramer as the only company from our original group to garner double-digit support, and Extron again cracked the top three thanks to write-ins.

Da-Lite easily projected as the winner, taking almost half of the votes. That was enough to easily outpace Draper in second and Stewart Filmscreen in third place. The three companies combined for more than 80 percent of the vote.

Read the full article at http://digital.commercialintegrator.com/article/CI+2015+Brand+Preference+Survey+REVEALS+LOYALTIES/2303656/277781/article.html.

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