Friday COACHWORX Business Tips: Explaining electrical terms

By now, most of your techs and installers should have absorbed enough electrical knowledge to do their jobs – they know what works with what, even if they don’t always understand why.

But when you back out of your install bays, that level of knowledge decreases among sales staff and admins – which makes things difficult because a lot of the 12-volt products you sell are differentiated by electrical terminology. Some wires have different ohms of impedance, while voltage outputs from AV receivers and amplifiers may differ.

Because power equals performance, it’s important that everyone on your team understands these concepts. If you don’t understand it, how can you sell it?

This simple video provides a fairly simple overview of the difference between volts, amps, and watts:

This tutorial at Sparkfun should also be required for anyone working in the industry:


The next step is to figure out what all these electrical concepts mean for car audio. Sonic Electronix put out a Car Audio 101 series on YouTube that does a decent job explaining car audio components with some information on comparing specs:

This guide by Best Buy was created for home theatre, but a lot of the same information applies to car audio – albeit with different volts and watts:

This is a good glossary of car audio terminology, although it doesn’t always explain what the terminology actually means:


This article from CarStereo.com is a little more specific about the ways these different electrical terminologies apply to actual car audio installations:


Car Audio Fabrication also put together a pretty good video explaining the process of designing a car audio system, starting with your goal:

If you’re still stuck on some of the concepts, you can always go the Dummies route:


Once your staff fully understands the concepts behind what you sell, it’s easier to explain the features and benefits of everything you have to offer.

The next step is to figure out how you want to explain all of this to your customers. Explainer videos like the above are pretty good and help establish your credentials as not just the experts, but the enthusiastic experts that are willing to take the time to educate their customers. You could create simple handouts, or even find a wall where you can map everything out with explanations for every step of the process.

The important thing is to make customers feel like they’re doing the right thing – and they’ll never feel completely sure until they understand what they’re doing.



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