Summer NAMM Plan

Discover how to maximize Summer NAMM and the reasons why it is important for your community music store to attend.

Summer NAMM is a truly unique trade show. In Nashville, we have plenty of time to spend alongside our vendors and friends. The relaxed atmosphere at this annual NAMMily reunion allows us to focus on relationship building and networking. Because of the casual vibe, we find more opportunity to connect with the broader industry on a deeper level. In fact, some of our dearest friendships were born at Summer NAMM! Additionally, we appreciate the recognition and sense of community that the Top 100 Dealer Awards brings to music retailers. It’s invaluable to be around the “cream of the crop,” and it inspires our team to do more and strive to be better!

How I Work the Show

San Diego Music Studio works the floor as a team. First, we visit our long-term vendors. We take the time to catch up on a personal level then place our orders. For many of our products, we pre-plan our purchases. Then, when we’re face-to-face, our team is able to support exhibitors’ sales in person, showing our support and placing an order, as well as asking for any incentives. Likewise, the show is a great opportunity to meet with the senior management of our favorite vendors, creating a relationship that goes deeper into the company structure.

Next, we like to block off a day to walk the entire show floor, booth by booth. It’s critically valuable to get to know the new products and services, as well as scope out potential holiday merchandise. We love to find new impulse buys for our customers, such as front-counter products. We call these tchotchke items our “gum or candy.” These fun, little and creative products fit with our store, so when we find one, we’ll place an order on the spot!

As we walk the floor, we share playful social media posts, so we can generate buzz and bring the Summer NAMM experience to our customers back home. They love the sneak previews of the fun new products coming soon to our store. After that, it’s off to relevant NAMM U education sessions. The ideas are easy to implement and have the potential to revolutionize our operation. Finally, I never miss the Coalition on Coalitions meeting. It’s so valuable to get involved and learn how we as retailers can help make music education a reality for all. Through the techniques and powerful network at the Coalition on Coalitions, we’ve found tools to help make a difference in our representative government and a delightful way to connect as a musical community.

Following Up

When we return home, our team follows up on the orders we made at the show, gets in contact with the new vendors we met and continues placing orders. We pool our notes from NAMM U education sessions and share them with our staff. We’ll also have meetings to discuss all that we learned and creative ways of implementing these new ideas in our store.

Don’t Miss Out on a Valuable Opportunity!

In my opinion, missing Summer NAMM is a missed opportunity. Period. It’s a missed opportunity to meet new people, connect and build lasting relationships. Summer NAMM is the perfect mid-year refresh. It is a breath of fresh air. The show sparks inspiration and gets the creative juices flowing again. I couldn’t imagine waiting an entire year in between shows!

Kimberly Deverell

Director of Operations • San Diego Music Studio

Current NAMM Board Member