Sell me a guitar

Interesting article here on the fortunes of Fender, the guitar maker.

One commentator in the article is quoted as asking ‘“what possible niche is left unexploited by Fender?”

I’d suggest making more of an effort to sell to people like me, who now have the money to afford the guitars they used to want but were not able to afford. We don’t have the time to play them now, but we can put them in the corner and admire them lovingly.

Keep marketing to people who actually make a living out of their guitars and keep selling to people who are starting out and are buying the cheaper models, but tap into what I call the ‘daft market’.

Setting up a secondhand/used arm would also help. Use the company’s marketing reach to start milking my demographic. Doing this without hurting the bricks and mortar stores would be a challenge, but I can think of a number of ways this might work – Fender’s online marketplace aggregating and marketing stock from certified Fender resellers, for example. Go on, sell me a 1960s Jazzmaster. It doesn’t matter if it always goes out of tun – it’ll look great in my living room.

The electric guitar world resembles, to me, the book world of the early 90s. Linked to bricks and mortar stores, albeit with their own limited online presence, selling things you only buy if you are physically in the shop. Last year I nearly bought a guitar, but didn’t. I did buy two effects pedals, but only because I happened to go past Chandler’s Guitars in Ealing, as well as drop in to a shop during a holiday in New York. If I hadn’t popped in, I’d never have bought anything.

I’d trust Fender to market and ship a guitar to Dubai, or at least to help me trust the process by endorsing a shop to do so.

So, get a move on Fender, before Mrs Saul reads this and cancels the budget. Start selling to people who don’t really need your product, but can probably afford it.

ps Jesus Wore Ray Bans classic numbers were recorded using a Tokai Stratocaster from the early 80s – a very nice Fender clone.

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