This article is the fourth and final in a collaborative series with Astro Audio Video Lighting (AVL), one of Los Angeles' leading retailers, installers and integrators for audio, video and lighting equipment. These articles will provide insights into how the Astro AVL team has used X-Laser systems to fit their clients' needs in all sorts of entertainment and production disciplines.
By Cypher, Sales Manager / DJ Instructor / Installation Designer & Foreman at Astro AVL
The Hobbyist and Independent Designer
These people tend to be the most casual but also the most receptive to creative and unique ideas. They may come to you knowing exactly what they want because they usually have a vision, they do the research and they nerd out for the next cool tool for expressing their creativity.
This group is known to have passion for the exploration of using laser effects in a variety of more spontaneous and candid real-world scenarios. They may have an upcoming event on the table that gives them the financial reasoning to seek out and justify satisfying their laser cravings, but make no mistake that their underlying motivation is the magical potential for continued use of their new toy wherever life takes them.
For these individuals there is a clear choice. The LaserCube WiFi by Wicked Lasers is everything they dreamed of. It’s portable, battery operated, has easy iOS control from a iPhone or iPad, and best of all, it pumps out impressive wattage from the most compact full-function laser you can find. When the LaserCube first became, available a customer fitting this demographic immediately bought two from Astro - and one of those two was already earmarked for our Rental Department (meaning it was not a unit we planned to sell until the customer twisted our arm). You can see why this customer was so intrigued by looking at the LaserCube on display in our showroom below.
Identify the Unusual Opportunities
Besides these more obvious go-to identifiers of suitable potential X-Laser end-users, there are outlying opportunities at hand that, when left unnoticed, can be like leaving money on the ground.
Eventually there always comes a time a client will ask you for an outside-the-box idea. That’s when the pressure kicks in to be innovative and it's also the opportunity to show your worth as an industry consultant. One multi-billion dollar manufacturer of toy products had already purchased hundreds of lighting products from Astro AVL for use in their showrooms. It was only after we did a presentation of an X-Laser product that they came to understand the value added from the fixture and purchased a 5-watt option to continue developing their driving initiative of enhanced product displays and showmanship. They didn't understand the technology at first, but they certainly did appreciate the impact and potential it offered after seeing it in action.
Typically most of these clients are rightfully oblivious to what is commonplace for those of us who swim in the realm of lighting gear and DJ equipment regularly. We have a niche here at Astro AVL because we pride ourselves on providing creative design solutions stemming from seemingly unorthodox sources.
The Resources You Shouldn’t Ignore
As Astro’s manager and key lighting programmer, I’ve personally experienced the added support from X-Laser when crafting custom content that I needed help optimizing for the best playback effect. I can vouch firsthand that their techs are readily willing and accessible to help their customers get their products integrated and deployed fluidly. When it's crunch time and you hit a snag (like I did with hidden issues behind the micro curve points in a company’s unique logo font), or whether it’s more basic and you’re just not sure if your laser is working properly, you will learn to never underestimate the value of a company that stands behind its users. X-Laser keeps the cavalry in your corner.
To address this more head-on, a common question for most individuals who are fairly new in the laser game and still learning to advocate for the X-Laser product family is likely to be, “How do I know when to suggest using a professional laser to my client?”
Over the years at Astro AVL I've learned that it’s not so straightforward. There are times the client’s budget can’t accommodate my ideas. And then there are other times I’ve kicked myself for missing the prime opportunity to mention using a laser as a practical solution. Eventually I came to understand how to qualify these opportunities with practice. But essentially the first step is keeping these options readily in mind when engaging in casual discovery conversations.
Whatever your intended use, knowing how to provide the right level of special effect design and knowing which X-Laser fixture(s) to recommend is about finding those key moments during open design discussions, making it relate to their goals, and doing so from a place of confidence and knowledge. As an AVL provider your words and expertise bring value to the table.
This comes first from building that experience by doing your homework, having a slight idea of an organized framework when structuring and guiding conversations and then lastly, diving right in. As a reward you will find yourself pleasantly surprised and equally encouraged by the enthusiasm you get in response.
Check out the X-Laser line of products to get familiar with the tools that will drive you to the next stage in your event-based business endeavors. Then check out AstroAVL.com to see how we can help you pick the perfect product for your shows and ensure you have the best DJ lighting to make your gig stand out from the rest.
ABOUT ASTRO AVL
Astro AVL has been a landmark resource in the entertainment industry since 1974. As LA’s first and original DJ store, it has helped legendary and local artists launch their careers and has provided Hollywood's top production studios with the tools they need to bring their sets to life through visual artistry. Beyond sales, Astro offers a rentals & repair service department and a school for educational instruction in DJing, Music Production, and Lighting Programming. The company also designs and executes customized systems across hallmark LA venues and nationwide chains. If you find yourself in Los Angeles, Astro AVL invites you to check out its award-winning showrooms. To learn more about Astro AVL, please visit astroavl.com today.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Cypher has 20 years of experience as a DJ and as a producer with track releases on five internationally recognized record labels. Along with performing for venues from NYC to LA he designs audio and lighting systems, giving him a wide base of knowledge of products in the entertainment industry. He is the Manager, Lead DJ Instructor, and Installation Foreman of Astro Audio Video Lighting in Glendale, California.
To see all of the blog posts in this series, click here for the archive.