SAMMYs Celebrate Industry’s Creative Minds
Some came in business casual, while others arrived in semiformal attire, but one attendee was especially well dressed for the occasion. It paid off when he was announced a winner and walked up to the podium to accept his Sales and Marketing (SAMMY) award in front of more than 100 people.
Jamie Orvis, COO of Security Solutions in Wilton, Conn., says he was more nervous than in previous years because this time his company was a finalist in the business card category. “I was the only one wearing a tux, but it worked out great,” Orvis says. “My SAMMY is now prominently displayed in my office.”
Security dealers/integrators, manufacturer representatives, association members, show organizers, government consultants and others made up a full house at Security Sales & Integration‘s 8th annual SAMMY Awards ceremony. This year the event took place March 25 at the Venetian Hotel in Las Vegas in conjunction with the International Security Conference and Exhibition (ISC) West show for the first time. Attendees prepared themselves for the evening with hors d’oeuvres, drinks and plenty of business talk and casual conversation. SSI Publisher Mike Zawinski served as master of ceremonies.
This year’s SAMMY categories were streamlined to 12 to better represent sales and marketing strategies for both residential and commercial markets. They now also include a grand prize for Integrated Residential Installation of the Year and Integrated Commercial/Industrial Installation of the Year (previously a separate awards contest when it was first launched in 2002).
This year’s awards saw some newcomers as well as repeat entrants. Vector Security of Warrendale, Pa., was a finalist in three categories and duplicated its win from 2000 in the newsletter category. Mike Grady, Vector’s senior vice president, says he has attended the SAMMYs for the past six years and has seen the program evolve. “There’s a lot of interaction with those who participate and it’s very stimulating, especially if you’re a marketer. It’s very inspiring.”
John Jennings, CEO of Safeguard Security and Communications of Scottsdale, Ariz., was a first-time participant. The company won three SAMMY awards, and it expects to enter again next time. “I think the program speaks well for the company, and it’s something else to put on our Web site as a credible piece,” he states.
Past winner Greater Alarm of Irvine, Calif., took home two SAMMYs this year. George DeMarco, company president, says the award has served as a morale boost for employees. Aside from competing, DeMarco says the event enables him to see what other companies are doing in delivering their marketing messages. “We’re not there to win a SAMMY; we’re there to meet the needs of our customers, and the SAMMYs are an incredible byproduct of that.”
Sonitrol Corp. of Alexandria, Va., has won in the past, but this was Franchise Development Manager Frank Minni’s first time at the event. He accepted the company’s SAMMY for the commercial/industrial sales brochure category. “It’s good recognition for the organization and for Ellen [Koh, director of communications] and the materials. We have a lot to be proud of in that regard,” he says.
SecurTek Monitoring Solutions of Yorkton, Saskatchewan, Canada, returned home with a SAMMY for TV/radio advertisement. Winning for the first time, Market Manager LeAnn Woodhouse says, “This reinforces that we’re on the right track with our marketing efforts.”
Keith Fisher, president of Keyth Technologies of Highland Park, Ill., says he took a break from the previous SAMMYs. Returning this year, the company won for company logo/vehicle design. “We are unique in our marketing, so when you work the whole year like a dog for your business, a SAMMY is a nice accolade.”
Security Sales & Integration thanks all the entrants, sponsors, judges and others who contributed to the event and its success.
Entries for this year included bold colors and catchy phrases, even Marvel comic heroes. Some security companies incorporated a more simple and minimalist look and feel to their materials. Others injected sleek and edgy designs. See for yourself …
Direct-Mail Piece/Basic Brochure
|Winner: The Greater Alarm Co., Irvine, Calif.|
Greater Alarm scored an average of 20 points out of a possible 25 in this category for the uniqueness of the brochure’s appearance as well as conveying personality through the company’s message.
“Welcome to your new residence …” is a warm approach to new homeowners in this piece. The four-color format explains what services and features the security company offers as well as an 800 number that urges recipients to call immediately.
|Sonitrol Corp., Alexandria, Va.
This personalized four-color post card designed for Sonitrol’s commercial clients grabs recipients’ attention, and also offers a free security risk assessment of the potential client’s business.
|Vector Security, Warrendale, Pa.
The opening phrase of Vector’s brochure, “Is a new day dawning or is night falling – on your alarm business?”, draws attention and makes recipients want to turn the card over for more information.