60 Second Interview: Bob Rieder, EV

Q: What is your new position, and what does it entail?
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Q: What is your new position, and what does it entail?

Q: What is your new position, and what does it entail?

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A: I’m a liaison between our product development and sales groups, with two primary responsibilities for Electro-Voice. The first is to develop marketing strategies and tools that support our sales team and help them connect our install customers with the products that are right for their needs. This includes shaping the messages that we communicate through all of our marketing channels. My other role is to proactively listen to our customers and channel their feedback to the right people internally, so that is incorporated into new products.

Q: How has your background prepared you for your new role?

A: I have worked in the audio industry for more than 20 years, and first focused on the installed sound market while at Shure. Having spent the early part of my career as a loudspeaker and audio product engineer, I have a solid understanding of the technical side of things. I hold degrees in engineering, music and marketing, which give me a strong, interdisciplinary perspective. But more importantly, I believe that the real purpose of audio technology is to facilitate the communication of music, of information, of ideas or emotions. And when we do that well, we’re making people’s lives better in some way. That’s ultimately what I think our products need to do.

Q: What new marketing initiatives are we likely to see from the company?

A: We’ll be doing more to spotlight the technologies we have developed at Electro- Voice. There are few audio companies that can lay claim to a storehouse of tribal knowledge as significant as ours, and every Electro-Voice loudspeaker that you buy represents a realization of that cumulative experience. When you combine those loudspeakers with our processing and amplification, the resulting sound systems are more acoustically predictable and robust than anything users could have imagined even a few years ago.

Q: What are your short- and long-term goals?

A: We provide an overwhelming amount of information about our products, but I want to make it easier and faster for customers to find the product details they need, both on line and in print. In the longer term, I want to persuade more customers to think of processing, amplification and loudspeakers as an integrated system, which is increasingly the way we design them. Customers don’t simply get optimized audio performance from this approach; they get intelligent systems in which (for example) drive levels adapt to dynamic changes in loudspeaker performance.

Q: What is the greatest challenge that you face?

A: Like almost all audio companies, Electro-Voice built its brand on specific product categories (loudspeakers and microphones). My challenge is to persuade audio professionals that there can be advantages to buying the back end of the audio chain—or in some applications, the entire chain—from a single manufacturer. Because we have deep knowledge of every part of the system, we’re better able to support customers. And because we’re designing components to work together, we can deliver a system that is greater than the sum of its parts.