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Discussion in 'Miscellaneous [BG]' started by Jimmythebassist, Apr 15, 2009.

  1. Jimmythebassist


    Feb 6, 2009
    Hey fellow bassists. I was just hired by Guitar Center and I was just wondering if anyone could give me some of their opinions on how you would like to be treated when you go to the store. What kind of info should I know? What should I do for you? Should I leave you to your own devises? Is there any specific information I should know about each type of Bass? any tips or information anyone can give would be really helpful.

    Thanks, Jimmy :bassist:
  2. BillyRay

    BillyRay Supporting Member

    Jan 20, 2008
    Some tips:

    a) Ask if the customer needs any help when you first see him. If he doesn't, let him be, don't go bugging him every 5 minutes.

    If he needs help, help him the best you can.

    b) Be courteous and don't be scared of saying you don't know of a particular model, brand of string, construction technique, etc. Nothing worse than asking for something particular and being told it doesn't exist.

    c) Please shave or at least look like you've taken a bath today. This is especially true of the guys who hang out in the bass section at my local store. They are great guys, but they can be a little "rough" looking (huge beards, ponytails, metal band shirt). This can be intidmating to the mom who buys Junior his first axe or make you look like a hipster douche to older gentlemen who've been around the block. It's not because you work in a music store that you shouldn't dress up a bit.
  3. Baird6869

    Baird6869 RIP Gord Downey. A True Canadian Icon.

    Please quickly throw out ANY bassist that plays the same slap riff OVER AND OVER AND OVER through a cranked SVT!
  4. Jimmythebassist


    Feb 6, 2009
    Thanks. The bassist at my store are scruffy as well. I think I will be the cleanest one there.:bassist:
  5. RickenBoogie


    Jul 22, 2007
    Dallas, TX
    What Billyray said, and if you don't know something, don't be afraid to admit it. Don't "pretend" to know anything that you don't actually know. And, congrats on the new job. Can you say "employee discount"?
  6. I don't know if this applies to you, but try to make sure the basses are set up atleast decently. I went into my local GC and both the Warwick $$ and the Sterling they had were literally unplayable. Talk about a turn-off.
  7. Jim Carr

    Jim Carr Dr. Jim Gold Supporting Member

    Jan 21, 2006
    Denton, TX or Kailua, HI
    fEARful Kool-Aid dispensing liberal academic card-carrying union member Musicians Local 72-147
    Congratulations on your new job!!! :hyper:
  8. two fingers

    two fingers Opinionated blowhard. But not mad about it. Gold Supporting Member

    Feb 7, 2005
    Eastern NC USA
    This will certainly help. I worked in a store (not GC) for 7 years. Just be GOOD to people. Allow them some room to breathe but still be available apon request. Say something like "I'm gonna leave you alone but if you need ANYTHING please come find me. I will do anything I can to help." Then just check back by every 5 or 10 minutes and say "You still doing fine over here?" One thing that worked for me was BUSINESS CARDS. Even if you have to pay for them yourself, get cards made and HAND THEM OUT. If you QUOTE ANYTHING write it on the back of the card. That way they know WHO to get up with if they decide to buy. If you haven't given out a dozen or so in a day you have lost some business. Make sure that when you give people good service, they know when you are working next. That way they will come back to see YOU when they have decided to make a purchase. All in all, just become the GO TO guy for your customers. Make sure that everyone knows that you will give them some space AND great customer service. This plan made me top salesman for 6 years running.

    One more thing, leave YOUR opinions about some things at the door. There are going to be buyers that buy things that you wouldn't play if it were GIVEN to you. But it works for THEM. You may be a Fender hater. But there are going to be customers for whom a Fender is the best tool. Just an example.

    Best of luck to you! Retail CAN be fun if you treat people right.

    Edit to add:
    The fact that you are humble enough to ask us for help tells me that you are going to be good at it. That fact alone puts you miles ahead of most salesmen.
  9. Smallmouth_Bass


    Dec 29, 2005
    1) Know the products you sell. Read up on them and get all the information you can.

    2) Be helpful but not overbearing.

    3) Treat everyone well, even the kids that look like they're not going to buy anything.
  10. JTE

    JTE Supporting Member

    Mar 12, 2008
    Central Illinois, USA
    Know the products you DON'T sell too. Know the facts, not the i'net trash talk. That helps a LOT when people start asking. But you gotta handle it well. Don't say stuff like "You know that all the Ampeg stuff is made by slave labor in Vietnam now, doncha?". Say stuff like "Sure the Joe Blow Classic is a well respected amp, and it's going to sound good. But let's check out the New Hip Guy amp because it's got some stuff the JB folks don't have, and it's got a better warranty".

    Also, don't let your opinion be the measure of what stuff is good. Sure, you have to be a fan of the stuff you're selling. But, just because you might prefer the characteristic colored sound of an Ampeg SVT, don't chase customers away by pushihng that amp.

    LISTEN to the customer, and build a relationship with them. Let people know they can trust you to steer them towards a couple of good choices, that you understand what they're looking for, and that you'll be there to take care of them after the sale.

  11. ettsn


    Mar 29, 2009
    Atlanta, GA
    There is a HUGE difference in selling something to someone, and helping someone buy something.

    Don't be a salesperson. Earn their trust through good advice and opinions stated as opinions. Be their guide, but let them make the choices.
  12. john turner

    john turner You don't want to do that. Trust me. Staff Member

    Mar 14, 2000
    atlanta ga
    well, i don't necessarily look it, but between my basses and amps, and my recording gear, i've spent in the neighborhood of $100k on music gear in the past ~25 years.

    if i'm in the store, there's a good chance that i'm there for a specific reason, and that i probably won't be leaving without purchasing -something-, or at the very least am considering purchasing something.

    in the past, i've worked with one or two individuals at stores, and even followed them to other stores, because they gave me great deals on purchases. they might have hurt themselves in the short run by giving me the maximum deal they could, but in the long run they've made a ton of money off me, because i'm very loyal, and they've convinced me that they are going to give me the best price around.

    i would say you'd be well served as a new employee of GC to treat every customer that you deal with like they might be someone like me. you never know when that guy will come around -the dude that's going to plop $10 grand down out of the blue for studio gear, and then come back every few months for a couple hundred more bucks worth of gear. the first time you may have met him might have been because he was asking you a bunch of annoying questions about gear, and the fact that you answered them all without acting annoyed might have sold him on you being the guy he wanted to deal with.

    i would also say to know about -everything- that you can, not just basses. know about gear, know about music, know about recording and performing. having broad knowledge about music and gear across the spectrum, and specializing in bass gear, is going to make you look more like an expert and an authority to those who come in to buy.
  13. john turner

    john turner You don't want to do that. Trust me. Staff Member

    Mar 14, 2000
    atlanta ga
    great post. i would add that it's good to have strong opinions, but make sure you have them for the right reason.

    for instance, if you don't like a particular brand of instrument, quantify your opinion on it - find the good points about it and understand why other folks might like them.

    for instance, i don't really like p-basses. the general aesthetic of the instrument just doesn't appeal to me, and the string spacing is too wide for a 4 string, imo. i'm much more of a jazz bass guy, for these reasons. that being said, i understand the appeal of a p-bass, and would not hesitate to suggest them to someone whose needs or desires pointed to one.
  14. Goatman


    Aug 19, 2008
    Seattle, WA
    At my local GC, there's this one guy who knows a hell of a lot about bass stuff and I'm always grateful that he's willing to share information with me even if I'm just casually trying out amps without much agenda. That alone makes up for the widespread inventory shortage they always seem to have at that place... heh.

    But that was already mentioned, how about recommend they join TB! :bassist:

    I wish somebody told me about this site years ago when I started playing. Also, I go to GC much more now that I read about gear here. So yeah, spread the word! :)

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