The Key Value Added Ingredient You January 2013

As we enter 2013, it’s quite normal to pause for a moment and take a look at business trends generally and then specifically in our industry. This kind of reflection does not usually conjure up visions of sugar plums or elves dancing across the snow. More likely the first image that pops into a retailer’s mind is The Boogie Man of the Year! Here is a list of famous Boogie Men of the Year from the past and present. Maybe you might remember a few of them—or if you’ve been around long enough—all of them! In some cases they became less frightening as years went by, but some are still a bit frightening, in other cases, they just disappeared.

  1. Sears Roebuck
  2. Warehouse Music Sales
  3. Mandolin Brothers
  4. Elderly Instruments
  5. Mars Music
  6. Guitar Center
  7. Best Buy
  8. Musician’s Friend
  10. Woodwind & Brasswind

Each of these businesses brought a particular element of terror, and each of them has helped to produce an industry more finely tuned to customers’ demands than ever before.

The response to the challenge is critical. For some, the response has been to pray for legislation or some other form of intervention that will somehow fix pricing and level the field of competition. That solution has been short-term and in most cases has hastened extinction. The world is spinning in a different direction.

In the end, it’s all about value and adding value. Commoditized products are the most vulnerable to discount pricing and drive the race-to-the-bottom mentality of many of your suppliers and adversaries. Between the covers of the Retail Music News you will find the unique, quality products that you need to compete in the Market. Your expertise and representation of those products is the key value-added ingredient.

We appreciate your expertise and your support. Our competitors dissect our instruments regularly searching for the mysteries of tone you have discovered in Blueridge Guitars, Kentucky Mandolins, Gold Star Banjos and Cremona Violins. They are still searching! Join us for Your best year ever!

Richard Keldsen

San Francisco

January 2013