#1
I'm brand new here and joined to get some opinions from other guitarists. This is NOT spam and I will not mention my site or product in any way.

What I am interested in finding out is people's opinions of the best place to advertise a guitar product that is unique, inexpensive and quite "cool". I'm open to magazine advertising and internet advertising suggestions.

So what do you think? Where should my small business spend it's money to advertise this product?

Thanks,
Mark
#2
Honestly, it depends on the nature of the product. Advertising something people are likely to get on a whim is different to a product that's gonna be an important part of their guitar rig.

What's the product?

Because a lot of the time when something is described as quite "cool" it usually isn't. Just don't see the need for those quotation marks.
My old signature was too long. Have a daisy.

#3
RAB11...I don't know if I'm allow to say without spamming. Maybe I can get away with saying guitar skins? But not the normal type.
#4
It depends on the product.
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#6
Describe your product without alluding to the brand name. Tell us what you would want to tell the consumer. But again, without alluding to the brand name.
#7
We sell marine grade, custom vinyl guitar skins for guitars and basses. We offer over 500 designs based upon category and a completely custom service, designing for the customer or using images provided by the customer. We have sold over 300 skins without advertising thus far with just internet placement and offer a product that is high resolution, durable, removable and affordable at approximately $50 per skin.

I won't mention the site or company, but we have a fun, attractive and weird little website and theme that people seem to like and a product that our customers have raved about. We include real customer comments and our design process is basically the same as hiring a graphic designer to make their skin...unless they choose a stock design which we then size for their instrument and provide a PDF proof prior to printing and shipping.
#8
And I'll apologize now for having to run. Time to wake the kids and get ready for work. I didn't expect responses so quickly. I will check back later for opinions and suggestions.

Thanks!
#9
How about talking to different chains that sell instruments? Maybe they are willing to order a batch from you. You could also advertise on their websites, but that'd probably cost you money.
#10
Small businesses are most successful when they utilize the few, but significant, advantages that they can offer that big businesses can't.

You need to be all about customer service. If someone emails you, answer that shit within three hours. Be as polite as possible. Answer as many banal, stupid questions as humanly possible. Show that you care about your customers. Show them you're a human being who makes a living by exceeding people's expectations.

Of all the businesses I've frequented, the ones that were able to do this are the ones that have kept my business.

Make sure to emphasize the humanity aspect. If you make a mistake, admit it. If a shipment of yours is delayed and it's going to take you a week to get them, and then an additional week until you can ship them out, tell everyone. As long as you communicate and are kind, friendly, and helpful, everyone you deal with will tell someone about you.

Word of mouth is the most important aspect of advertising for small businesses that specialize in niche products.

Targeted behavioral advertising is also very effective (2.7 times more effective than nontargeted marketing). There is Google AdWords, I believe Time Warner has their own version, and there are plenty of other ones. Do your research!
#11
What I'm really interested in knowing is people's opinion on WHERE to advertise. When I was playing in bands on a regular basis...many years ago...the internet wasn't around and most music products would be advertised in guitar magazines. Do people still buy guitar mags or has that gone away? If so...what magazines do you guys read?

As far as your comments on marketing etc...we offer a completely custom service to each customer, sizing, positioning, etc. and working with them very hands-on. We build a great relationship with them and our reputation and customer service is (in my opinion) amazing.

As far as marketing the products to stores...since each skin is a custom product, we don't have anything packaged. We provide a service which results in a product but can't stock anything. Hence the desire to look into print or internet advertising.

Personally...I'd love to advertise here...on this forum but it doesn't appear that they take ads. So...suggestions? Websites that you think would be good advertising locations? And what about magazines?

Thanks.
#12
I don't think you fully understand how targeted behavioral marketing works.... It isn't based on advertising in a specific location. Depending on the client you use (be it google or time warner), the advertisements will be targeted to your target demographic. The client will do it for you. I think the musician demographic is far too fractured for you to have a single place to reach them, which is why targeted marketing is the way to go.

Forums are probably your best bet, but I doubt many people here want guitar skins. I'd never cover up one of my lovely ladies.
#13
Understood! I've been getting some good suggestions for AdWords and YouTube paid placement. And I completely understand that skinning a classic, professional guitar isn't a popular choice. Our customers usually skin cheaper guitars for "shock and awe" value and you would be (as I was) surprised at the number of people who do use our service/product.

That is a big part of my reasoning for considering "print" advertising. With as few people as there are that know about our service...the response has been amazing. So I've got to give this a chance to expand and see where it goes. You know...reinvest.