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Turning Point AV is a full-service, nationwide, audio visual provider.  We provide the audio visual equipment and labor for conferences that occur throughout the US. 

Blog

The Turning Point AV blog is your one-stop-shop for all nationwide audio visual information.  From presentation tips to audio visual equipment reviews, read our audio visual blog to stay on top of the audio visual game!

Selecting the right AV provider for your event

Brooke Wexler

Nationwide AV company

You have a choice!

Many of our clients did not realize they had a choice when selecting an audio visual provider for their program.  Although it may appear that the “in house” AV company is your only choice, there are many other types of AV companies that will WOW your attendees and presenters, as well as saving your organization money and time.

In addition to the “in house” AV company, you may also choose to work with a local or even a nationwide audio visual vendor.  Each choice has unique benefits, but overall, contracting with a nationwide vendor is the most streamlined, time-saving, cost-effective, and quality driven approach.  A nationwide audio visual company can positively impact the way you, your planning team, presenters, and attendees experience your events.    

You are not required to use the venue “in house” AV company

The “in house” AV company is a vendor contracted by the venue to supply audio visual services.  As a valued client of the venue, you are utilizing the venue for sleeping rooms, food and beverage, and meeting space.  This is the most important revenue for the venue and you are not required to select the “in house” audio visual company as your AV provider.  You have a choice and the right to select an AV vendor that will best serve your needs.

Choosing a Nationwide AV company results in cost savings

The ‘in house” AV company pays steep commission rates to the venue for the luxury of being the “preferred” audio visual provider for the venue.  These commissions can be in excess of 65% of overall gross revenue of the “in house” AV company.  This cost is unfortunately passed on to you in the form of high prices and hidden fees.

A nationwide AV company, however, is consistently a better value than the “in house” AV company.  They don’t pay commissions or have any hidden fees.  Their prices are fair and consistent and they may offer multiyear contract options that allow you to lock in your pricing for all of your events over multiple years, regardless of event location.     

Choosing a Nationwide AV company results in better service

Because the “in house” AV company serves many clients at the same time, they cannot supply the one-to-one service that a nationwide audio visual company does.   While the “in house” company is spread thin working with several meetings at the same time throughout the venue, your contracted nationwide company is only servicing your meeting at the event location and has their focus 100% on you. 

A Nationwide AV company makes your job easier

A nationwide AV company can partner with their clients for all of their events no matter the location.  They make their job immensely easier by becoming members of their team and taking the AV off of their plate, so they can focus on all other important areas of the conference planning.  By partnering with their clients year after year, they learn the ins and outs of the program; develop strong relationships with the planning staff, presenters and attendees; and create best practices and procedures that make the AV go off without a hitch.  

Know your rights

Contract Terms

If possible, it is best to negotiate all AV terms prior to signing the venue contract, although you can still negotiate AV after you selected the venue.

Insist on maintaining your right to use any vendor you wish.  We advise our clients to include the following language in any venue contract:

Buyer will not accept or agree to any proposal or contract containing conditions, terms, or clauses which unreasonably restrict our choice of third party suppliers for our event(s) at any meeting facility, whether such conditions are expressly stated in the proposal or contract, or whether they are contained in the general operating policies of the facility, be they published or unpublished.

Furthermore, Buyer will not accept or agree to any fees, surcharges, or penalties of any type charged by a meeting facility that are in any way based on or tied to our choice of third party suppliers, whether such fees are expressly stated in the proposal or contract, or whether they are contained in the general operating policies of the facility, be they published or unpublished.

This “Buyer’s rights regarding third party suppliers” clause shall be appended to all contracts that are executed by Buyer, and if it is determined that this clause is in conflict with any other clause, portion of any contract, or any general operating policy of the facility, then this “Buyer’s rights regarding third party suppliers” clause shall be deemed to take precedence over the other item(s) with which it is determined to be in conflict, unless specifically agreed otherwise.

Negotiating Fees

AV Liaison Fees

Insist on not paying for any additional AV labor supplied by the “in house” AV company as a result of selecting a vendor of your choice.  Be sure there are no “AV Liaison,” “Production Supervisor” or “Load in/out Supervisor” positions being charged to your master account.  While described as a service provided to your selected AV company, they offer very little assistance and sometimes do not show up at all.   

Internet

The “in house” AV company may use internet costs as leverage.  It is always best to guarantee a discounted rate on internet prior to signing the venue contract.  If you name your price prior to signing the contract, the venue will pressure the “in house” AV company to honor that price in order to get you to sign the contract.   

If outrageous internet fees are presented to you after you have signed the venue contract, let the venue know that the fee is overpriced and out of line.  The venue can negotiate at any time to keep you happy.

If your internet needs are basic, don’t feel pressure to order connections from the venue.   It is unlawful for the venue to intentionally restrict your devices’ network connection, including hot-spot and MiFi connections.   You can supply these connection devises which will result in tremendous cost savings.

Power

Power charges may or may not apply to your meeting rooms.  Don’t let the “in house” AV company determine your power needs.  They will often over estimate your power needs, charging you more than you need to pay. Turning Point AV is happy to determine the required power usage on your behalf (which is very minimal due to factors such as power saving LED lighting, etc.).  We will coordinate this with the ‘in house” AV company and will ensure fair and accurate power usage.


This may seem like a lot of information all at once, but the great thing about selecting a nationwide audio visual provider is that you only have to do it once!  Once you have secured your trusted vendor, rest assured that your AV needs will be taken care of for each program by a vendor you know and trust.   

For more information about nationwide AV companies and your right to choose, or to get an audio visual quote for any of your upcoming programs, please don't hesitate to contact us!

Great events require great planning!

Brooke Wexler

When we look at great skyscrapers, we marvel at the towering steel and glass yearning for the sky.  What we don’t see is the substructure that exists deep underground that provide the support that keep these super-tall structures from toppling over. 

The same can be said about great events.  When the lights go up and presenters hit the stage, we rarely think of the pre-planning support that ensure that the event goes off without a hitch. 

We sat down with our own Molly Carlson, Event Coordinator at Turning Point AV to uncover how her pre-planning sets the foundation for great events.   


Molly Carlson - Event Coordinator at Turning Point AV

Molly Carlson - Event Coordinator at Turning Point AV

Here you are in Savannah, GA, but you don’t seem to have a southern accent. Can you tell us where you are from originally and what brought you to Savannah?

I am originally from the beautiful beaches of Southern California! My husband received a great job offer that brought us across the country and was too good to be true. I had always heard of Savannah but never visited until we pulled up in a moving truck almost 2 years ago. I still pinch myself because life remains too good to be true. We really love being Savannah transplants!

How long have you been at Turning Point AV and what is your specific role? 

I have been with Turning Point AV for a year now. I am the Event Coordinator and work in partnership with our sales team, onsite staff and our clients to make sure all the details are covered and the event goes off seamlessly.

The “behind the scenes” audio visual portion of live events can be very complex.  Can you give me an idea of some of the steps you take to ensure a great event?

Open communication with the all the key players is most important. Working with the hotel to make sure rooms are ready, keeping in touch with the client for any schedule changes and making sure our onsite staff has as much knowledge of the pieces as possible is how everyone remains on the same page and in turn creates successful events!

The skills and knowledge base for nationwide audio visual services is very specific.  What are some new skills/knowledge/experiences you’ve picked up along the way that perhaps you never thought you’d have?

I’ve learned how to load a truck, create a diagram for a fire marshal, whether you need to use a short throw or long throw lens and which connectors are best for a specific setup. AV is an entirely different language. I’m still trying to get the hang of it but I’m a quick learner and pick up fast.

What do you think is important for clients to understand about your planning process?

The more information I have on your event, the more I can put the puzzle pieces in place for everyone else. It’s so important to be communicative regarding changes and updates. There is a lot of behind the scenes work that our clients don’t need to be bothered with, but we’re working hard to ensure success.

What are the most rewarding aspects of your job?

When events go off without a hitch! If I successfully hand off an event to our onsite staff and not hear anything until the recap after the show I know all the pieces were in place and the event went great!

What are the perks of working for Turning Point AV? 

Besides bringing my pup, Duke, into the office with me. Working with some of the greatest people in Savannah has been such a blessing. Turning Point AV works together as a great team and we help each other out to get the job done. It’s the best environment to work in which makes the work fun!

You recently worked on an event with President Obama.  What role did you have in the planning and executing of that event? 

This was such a reward experience, and I’m so thankful I had the opportunity. On the day of and leading up to the event I directed our onsite team, made sure additional gear was rented, everyone had their breaks, interfaced with secret service and White House Staff. My organizational skills came in handy as there were so many moving parts and requirements to have a safe and smooth event.

What advice would you give to other meeting planners that are considering the option of working with an independent audio visual company, like Turning Point AV? 

I’ve been on the meeting planner side before, and working with an independent AV company gives you so much more peace of mind because of the individualized attention. Our focus is on you, not on the other events at the hotel. Plus, we can learn your event and duplicate it from year to year. No more re-explaining your needs, we've got it handled!


Thank you Molly for taking the time to talk with us about your exciting role as Event Coordinator!  You do a great job and are key to creating event success, nationwide!

New Year, New Website, New Blog...

Brooke Wexler

Happy New Year!  2017 is off to a great start at Turning Point AV and we couldn't be happier to share our year with all of you!

AV service nationwide
  1. The 2017 year is here and although the months leading up to Jan 1 were filled with uncertainty and debate, one thing for sure is that the New Year presents itself with a new start for all.  As resolutions are made (and broken) and our intentions stay at their best, let us all take the 2017 year to reflect on our past and put our best foot forward.  The team at Turning Point AV couldn't be more excited for the new year -  New Technical Directors, new equipment, and new clients are just some of the new opportunities we have to keep us providing stellar and seamless AV services nationwide! 
  2. Our website has been refreshed with a new look for the new year - information regarding our specific show equipment, revised and streamlined order page for exhibitors, and new pictures featuring some of our favorite conferences from past years fill the pages.   Take a look at our website, learn more about Turning Point AV and how we can provide the best audio visual services for your next event, and be sure to share our site with your meeting planning colleagues and friends.  So often we hear at Turning Point AV that our clients did not know they had an option when selecting an audio visual provider.  They have contracted with the "in house" AV because they thought that was their only option.  And since discovering Turning Point AV and our nationwide service, they have SAVED MONEY and have received SEAMLESS onsite AV services for all of their events, nationwide.  Spread the word, spread our site, and let us take care of the AV for you!

  3. Our new blog is a great way to start off the new year.  The Turning Point AV team is excited to tell you about all the brand new equipment rolling in to service our 2017 meetings - right now we are unloading trucks of 50" monitors, Blackmagic Design 4K Production Switchers, and road cases to keep our equipment safe and in perfect working order during transportation.  We look forward to sharing tips and best practices for creating the perfect PowerPoint presentation, as well as featuring some of our best and most in demand services, such as Content Capture, Presentation Management, and Custom Scenic Stage Designs. Our new blog is your new way to access audio visual information to ensure your next event is the best one yet!

So, Happy New Year to us all and cheers to the best year yet!