By Chris Mc Loone
There are a variety of benefits of attending and exhibiting at the Fire Department Instructors Conference (FDIC), which takes place annually in Indianapolis, Indiana. The advantages to exhibitors also often translate into attendee advantages as well. “When exhibiting at FDIC you have absolutely everything to gain,” says Samantha D’Uva, Internal Communications and Media Relations Specialist with MSA. “From connecting directly with end users in the HOT training classes to meeting with distributors at select meetings to seeing what competitors have to offer, FDIC provides endless opportunities for networking, relationship building, and product research. Talking directly with the people that use your products every day is invaluable.”
This year, MSA is using FDIC to also launch its new marketing campaign geared specifically to the fire service. “Our fire service business has been fairly stable over the past few years and, in fact, has grown modestly despite the budget challenges many fire departments are facing today,” says D’Uva. “Nevertheless, being a global safety company that serves many markets, we sometimes battle the misperception that MSA is not committed or focused on the fire service.”
D’Uva says that goals for the marketing program include dispelling that perception using a strategy and creative approach new to MSA. This includes an ad campaign featuring Pittsburgh firefighters photographed by renowned local photographer Frank Walsh, a completely redesigned trade show booth that is far different from what MSA has constructed in the past, and prominent use of signage at the FDIC convention hall highlighted by a bridge walkway billboard and “stair art” on the escalators leading up to the convention hall. “Needless to say, MSA will have a prominent and bold presence at the conference,” adds D’Uva.
Product launches at the show include the Firehawk M7XT self-contained breathing apparatus (SCBA), GX2 automated test system, and Evolution 6000 thermal imaging camera (TIC).
With FDIC being a place with everything to gain by exhibiting, MSA is looking forward to the show and what other fire service suppliers are introducing. “As with any year, we’re expecting to see that latest innovations in products and services to help keep our first responders safe and able to do their jobs in an efficient and timely manner,” says D’Uva, adding, “From our new marketing campaign and signage to the opportunities to see what other companies are doing, everyone who is anyone will be at FDIC. And, we can’t wait to meet them.
By Chris Mc Loone