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Spotlight on Accent Lighting

â-  Local lighting store is a finalist for national Showroom of the Year


by: STAFF PHOTOS: VERN UYETAKE - Bob Warmbold, owner of Accent Lighting, is hopeful the company will be named Showroom of the Year. The store is a finalist in the competition.

Accent Lighting of Lake Oswego has been named a finalist in the 2014 Showroom of the Year awards. This is the second consecutive year the business has reached the finalist stage of the competition.

The awards, which will be presented at the Dallas International Lighting Market opening night reception June 18, honor the top lighting retailers in North America.

Top honors will go to one store in each of three dollar-volume categories, plus specialty awards for merchandising display, community involvement and social media engagement.

“Lighting retailers are working harder than ever to serve customers, from stepping up educational efforts that keep them abreast of LED lighting technologies to produce presentations that prompt inspiring environments,” Laura Van Zeyl, publisher and editorial director of Residential Lighting, said. “What’s just as impressive is that they continue to contribute to their industry and communities in meaningful ways. We’re proud to partner with Dallas Market Center on a program that honors the best examples of brick-and-mortar lighting retailing in the 21st century.”

Accent Lighting is a finalist in the category for businesses with revenue under $2 million.

For their entry, owner Bob Warmbold and his staff created a 10-minute video showcasing what makes Accent Lighting unique.

The video presents information about the store’s product line, partnerships with vendors and the interactive displays found in the store that provide customers, designers and builders with fresh ideas. The displays are changed regularly to keep current with new design trends and technology.

The video also talks about the community service Accent Light supports, including Equine Outreach Horse Rescue, Ronald McDonald House and Lake Oswego High School dance and girls lacrosse teams.

It also promoted the support Warmbold gives to area community colleges by serving as a guest lecturer in interior design classes.

The video also touted the store’s utilization of a wide variety of social media methods to reach customers, designers and builders. Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, its own website and other methods are utilized to promote services and keep connected with clients.

Also represented in the video was information on how Warmbold keeps staff motivated to provide high quality customer service.

“Education is tangible,” Warmbold said. All staff members are Certified Lighting Specialists and three are Certified Lighting Consultants, the top ranking of the American Lighting Association. Warmbold is the chairman of the ALA’s Certification Committee.

Accent Lighting also hosts educational events for staff, designers and builders that allow them to earn continuing education credits and gain knowledge on the latest advances in lighting technology.

View Accent Lighting’s entry online at youtu.be/6jSWbiF5cQ4.

For the second year in a row, 50 percent of the scoring for the Social Media Star Award was determined by “likes” posted to finalists’ profiles within the Showroom of the Year Social Media Star Event on “Residential Lighting” magazine’s Facebook page through May 19.

Official judges’ scores complete the remaining 50 percent for that category.

Three geographically diverse professionals judged the finalists and winners.

This year’s judges were visual merchandising expert Linda Cahan of Cahan and Co. Retail Design Consulting of West Linn; social media guru Leslie Carothers, CEO of The Kaleidoscope Partnership, Houston and small business consultant Brian Moran, founder and CEO of Brian Moran & Associates, Ho Ho Kus, N.J.

Accent Lighting carries a wide range of lighting fixtures from a variety of vendors. Educating staff, clients, designers and builders on the latest innovations in lighting is a main focus for Warmbold.

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