Poll: Mark the option that best applies to you:
Poll Options
View poll results: Mark the option that best applies to you:
I would rather shop at a local store for my music needs
45 44%
I would rather shop at Guitar Center for my music needs
14 14%
I would rather shop at Musician's Friend for my music needs
10 10%
I have no preferences
25 25%
I would rather shop at a different music retail chain
8 8%
Voters: 102.
Hey everyone,
I am a student at st. John Fisher college in Rochester NY and working on a project for PR class where I hypothetically suggest ways for Guitar Center to improve its customer service and image. I do not work for GC (I am a musician though) and was hoping if you guys would be nice enough to take my poll.

The point of the poll is to first gauge some public opinion on GC. I will probably go to some other forums and ask around just so I have some sort of evidence to show that yes..Guitar Center may have a bit of an image problem.

I would rather shop at the local music store. It's closer than the guitar center to my house anyway.
Last edited by skaterskagg1 at Nov 3, 2009,
sure GC is a pain in the ass to go to, but they have a load of stuff and decent prices (especially if u can haggle, or ur buying used, their used priced are amazing). musiciansfriend is good too if u know what u want to buy and have already tried it in real life. local shops just cant compete. if i had the money, i would support the local businesses, but i dont, so GC for me.
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From my experience, and i been to a couple of Guitar Centers.
Everything in guitar center looks horrible taken care of and usually the people working there have no idea what they are talking about.

I vote for Ebay.
I usually go to my local place for stuff like setups, strings, picks, etc. But if I'm gonna buy a new guitar or amp or something I usually go to GC.
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TS- perhaps you should have made one choice "I'd rather shop online"

Where I am, it's like 35 minutes to the closest music store, so online always wins.
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There's a GC down the street from me so it's convenient to just buy things like strings and cables from there when I need them. As for gear and guitars it's best to try them out at GC and buy them online somewhere
They should have a quick check register that always has someone at it, for accessories/strings, picks, all the stuff they keep behind the counter, and for people who know what they want. They should provide on line consultations and offer appointments.
Theres no guitar center near me (I dunno if theres any GC's in Canada), but if I apply the poll to the big chain guitar stores around here, my vote goes to 'I'd rather shop at a local store'

mostly because I work at one

but it really depends what I'm buying. If I need parts for modding/building, I buy from the small shop. the owner gets retailer discounts, and he usually makes an order at the same time I do. I pay shipping for both, so he just saves the shipping cost of his own parts, really.
obviously he wouldn't do that for everyone, but in general, for parts, the small shop is where to go.

for expensive items, the small shop is a better deal, as well, even to normal customers.

but for pedals/straps/strings/anything under $200, he big place is usually cheaper.

so.. tl;dr: I like shopping at a local store

but I don't see how that relates to your question.

I like shopping at a local store, and for GC to improve their customer service, they should ...become a small buisness?
The cool thing about GC is they match prices of on line stores. You can get the same prices as musician's friend, without having to pay for shipping and wait a week for it to arrive.
GC can improve their image by ceasing to hire arrogant, self-important, pompous assholes as salesmen. Too many either end up making customers feel insulted, or they piss people off by trying to rip them off even though the customer may know what's going on.
They should hire people who actually know what they're talking about, what they're selling, and how to respond to technical questions. The biggest issue I have with GC is that almost every time I've gone into one, the people I've talked to have no clue what they're talking about and/or selling.

They should also teach their employees NOT to hover around potential customers. It's well known bad business practice.
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Last edited by strat0blaster at Nov 3, 2009,
huuh... I don't know if this applies to me since I don't live in the US, but I voted for I have no preferences.
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I've never had these GC problems that everyone else seems to have, Its most convenient to me to fulfill my musical needs at GC.
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the local store near me really sucks. they have like 3 guitars that are way overpriced, and the guitar center's only about 20 minutes away, and a sam ash across the street, so for me, gc wins

as someone had already said i like going to the local store for little things like strings and picks etc but if im gonna buy a new amp or guitar or cymbals i'm gonna go to gc or sam ash
I have a local shop I use. I avoid chains when shopping for anything. Local business ftw!
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No preference. Everyone who works at a music store for comission needs help, and the guys at my local GC are good, better than Haight Ashbury music, which is full of tards.
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You guys must have crappy local music stores if you prefer guitar center.

Here in Albuquerque we have a music store called Grandma's. They don't cycle employees like chain stores do. Most of them have worked at the store for years and they are both great musicians and know their gear. They are also really friendly and many of them recognize me now. Also, their prices sh1t all over the prices of other stores, online outlets. I got a Schecter C-1 Bloodmoon their for $450 over there. The average asking price of GC and most online retailers of that same guitar is about $600. That's the average price difference between them and the internet/GC. And if against all odds you do find a lower price somewhere else, they will match it.
i live in Canada and i dont believe we have GC's here
i go local anyways
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Local is nice since the GC's in my area all carry pretty much the same things with little variation. Its nice to be able to find some good used instruments and gear of the "rare brand" type. But if I need new strings or a strap, GC all the way, its usually cheaper. Instruments/amps, local shops.

Might go to GC more if they did a better job with their employees/training ect. They cycle employees too much it seems, and they don't always know what they're talking about. Hell, at my local GC I've sold 5 or 6 basses and a couple amps to people while I was just chillin in guitar center, and I don't even work there. The only thing the GC employees had to do was ring them up
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1) Go to local music store.
---They have what I want. Done.
---They do not have what I want. Proceed to step 2.
2) Go to guitar center.
---They have what I want. Done.
---They do not have what I want. Proceed to step 3.
3) Buy it online (preferably musician's friend).
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Last edited by food1010 at Nov 3, 2009,
I would shop wherever I could get the best deal.
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another one of these GC threads this time disguised as "Class Project" ..

Yes....because thats what I do in my spare time....disguise posts as other posts rather than just say what's on my mind

BTW one of the huge things I'm pushing for in the paper is to try to suggest changes in the commission structure. Although GC would initially balk at how that would hurt their bottom line, what they should understand is that even the largest companies will go under if they keep going on the track of bad PR begetting bad PR. In the best interest of the company's future, they really should downplay commission.
Last edited by BigDMcgee at Nov 7, 2009,
ive been to multiple guitar centers, and multiple local stores, and usually guitar center has been way more helpful to me, plus they have a wider selection
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