Today’s world bombards us with data. Whether it be looking for information, reading or watching the news or being inundated with advertising, it can be overwhelming to sort through the “haystack” for the desired “needle,” especially when it comes to making sense of technology. Digital marketing experts estimate that most Americans are exposed to around 4,000 to 10,000 ads each day, and the average person sees hundreds of thousands of faces in a lifetime and only remembers 1 in 1,000.

How can you be remembered? With the flood of technology, networking and connectivity in everyday living, your customers are overwhelmed and don’t know where to go or who to turn to. That’s where you can come in. Be the one they turn to when they have a question or want/need their safety and technology addressed.

The challenge is staying current on all that is happening.  First, sign up for hard copy and/or digital versions of industry magazines and newsletters such as SDM smartHOME and Residential Systems. Follow key news outlets for their press on the industry, such as Forbes, New York Times, Chicago Tribune and Wall Street Journal. Schedule time to read them and jot down ideas that speak to you.

Follow and attend industry tradeshows. Leverage your relationships with manufacturers, buying groups and distributors. Sign up for newsletters and attend their events and training. Get to know the people, ask questions and learn.


Resources: How to Find




CEDIA Expo                                           


Clear Seas Research                              

CTA TechHome Division                       

Electronic Security Association (ESA)

Electronic Security Expo (ESX)          

Frost & Sullivan                                    

Google Alerts                                        



IoT Consortium                                     

ISC West                                                    



Parks Associates                                                                       

SDM smartHOME                                                                        

Z-Wave Alliance                                   


Follow and join industry associations serving the smart home and connected world. Check out AVIXA, CABA, CEDIA, CTA TechHome Division and ESA. Also check out Z-Wave Alliance and IoT Consortium.

Join LinkedIn industry-focused groups and follow hashtags.  

A wealth of knowledge and insights can be gleaned from research firms. My favorite, Parks Associates, has focused on the smart home industry for more than 20 years. Other firms I’ve found helpful include Clear Seas Research, Frost & Sullivan, Nielsen and Juniper.

You should also set Google Alerts on key words. Use industry terms and topics you want to learn more about. Some words I find helpful to search and follow include smart home, AI, artificial intelligence, connected devices, home automation, IoT, future, technology, innovation and consumer electronics.

Your customers trust you for their security and safety; now be the trusted advisor and main resource when it comes to technology, too.

President of Bedrock Learning, a training solutions company in Holland, Mich., Helen M. Heneveld has wide-ranging experience in smart home technologies, business strategies, and training — from startups to Fortune 500 firms. Her unique ability to simplify, see through the hype, identify impactful new technologies, and pinpoint potential opportunities shows in her passion to help others. Visit