Street Beat Shop Talk

Tony Shamma, vice president of sales for American Vending Sales in Elk Grove, Ill., has learned some valuable lessons from TouchTunes, a digital jukebox manufacturer, when it comes to attracting and keeping business. He spoke exclusively with Tourist Attractions and Parks.
Tourist Attractions & Parks: What’s the most popular request from clients when it comes to jukeboxes?  
Tony Shamma: They always say, I wish there were more locations I could place them.
TAP: What is the biggest challenge for making a profit?
Shamma: The biggest challenge we see today is the economy. This has had an effect on our core business. In order to try and create business, operators are looking for better deals that, in turn, cause a lower profit margin for both distributors and manufactures. Manufactures are looking for inexpensive alternatives to building hardware outside of the United States, and keeping margins at a sustainable place, and allowing respectful companies to keep their doors open. Distributors will need to create more added value to their businesses in order to make up for lower margins.
TAP: What’s the solution?
Shamma: Work smarter, not harder.
TAP: How do you reach customers?
Shamma: The idea is to market to the end user through all forms of media. Today’s generation is much more savvy with technology, so what better way to reach your customer then through their preferred means of connectivity, like Facebook, Twitter, e-mail blitzing, YouTube, etc.
TAP: What’s the place of the jukebox in the coin-op industry today?
Shamma: Today, jukeboxes are one of the only consistent coin-operated devices making money for our customers. Jukeboxes are the originators and have sustained the test of time. First there were 45s, then vinyls, then CDs. And now digital music, with over a couple hundred thousand selections to choice from. If we ever lose jukeboxes, we lose coin-op.

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