November 23, 2021   

Engaging Customers with Mobile Showrooms


As the pandemic continues to impede personal selling efforts, these companies are driving unique lighting experiences all over North America.

A self-proclaimed lighting business historian tells us that Smithcraft Lighting, one of the early producers of linear fluorescent fixtures, was the first company to install lighting fixtures in a truck to create a rolling showroom for commercial lighting products in the late 1960’s. 

A lot has changed in the last 50+ years, but the concept of creating a unique customer experience through mobile showrooms lives on with these three companies' rolling lighting showrooms that are touring through North America.


The H.E. Williams, Inc. Show Coach

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In what might be the most well-known and long-standing traveling commercial lighting showroom, the Williams Show Coach dates back to the 1980’s and has reportedly driven on every United States interstate. The motor coach displays over 35 product families of LED fixtures and lighting controls products. The pleasing surroundings of leather furniture and granite countertops may give occupants the feeling of being in a conference room and not that of a souped-up bus.

Naturally, the Show Coach requires a driver who is credentialed with a commercial driver’s license, so the company hires a dedicated driver to take the vehicle and members of the Williams sales team to the locations of various specifiers, agents, distributors and contractors.


Keystone Live! On Tour

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When the pandemic hit in 2020, Keystone Technologies quickly realized that engaging with customers was going to be more challenging than ever. So the company invested in a mobile showroom that could pull up to distributors, large contractors, end users and job sites. The concept has been so well received that the company has now deployed a total of four mobile showrooms with a fifth one planned to hit the road soon.

Josh Brown, Executive VP of Distributor Sales & Marketing, explained that Keystone Technologies “used Covid to create a new experience and have customers engage with Keystone in a unique way.” Distributors seem to treat a visit by the Keystone mobile showroom as a highly anticipated visit, that adds a more fulfilling and unique experience than a typical counter day might provide. Brown explained that the Keystone Live! on Tour concept was one of the best sales tools they could have deployed and that it’s “not stopping when Covid is over.”


The 3G Lighting North American Tour

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With experience in live musical performance, 3G Lighting Regional Sales Manager, Nathan McLaren, probably has more showmanship chops than the average lighting regional sales manager. When the polished chrome and black 3G Lighting box truck pulls into the parking lot of a specifier, contractor, agency or end user the music is loud and the bass is pumping from the exterior sound system. 

The mobile showroom’s two glass sides create a feeling of openness for customers as they peruse 45 different architectural lighting products. The company reports driving over 8000 miles in the last 2 months, visiting 22 states with sales calls, events and parking lot trade shows. McLaren tells us that he’s even visited specifiers homes for sales calls. 

Up next: the Carolinas, Florida and California. Rock on, Nathan!  rock-on.png




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