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PostPosted: Sun Sep 03, 2017 9:07 pm 
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I know some members have had problems dealing with some hi fi dealers. I'm sharing a recent experience I had. Early in July I stopped by an audio store I've dealt with over the last 25 years or more. The store was quiet except for one other customer who came in to talk to the owner and left after a few minutes. I was checking out the new gear and then went to look at the used section. I saw a vintage integrated that had been on the shelf for at least six months, I asked the owner about it and he started giving me some bull about how vintage gear has escalated, look on eBay, check out the prices in Europe blah, blah, blah.. I already knew the price his manager had quoted months ago $200. and he told me it was due to the fact the caps were new. Now the owner tells me the unit is $300. and it's never had a recap. Next I move on to an pre/amp combo, the owner says $650, yet on their website the price is $275 for each unit. I've had enough of this nonsense and I see an LP12 on a jig so I go over to the managers office and ask about having a turntable set up (to be fair he's having his lunch as I'm talking to him). He tells me he can do the setup and what do I need, I tell him I need a turntable tuned and an arm mounted probably with a cartridge. He asks me if I have the armboard and I tell him no, he tells me you have to find one or make one, when I asked if he would get one for me he gives me attitude and says I DON'T HAVE TIME TO DO THAT! Over the last two years I've spent $3000 and probably close to $9000 in all over the years. In June I checked out an audio store that was new to me even though they been around for twenty five years, the owner is a recording engineer and a musician. He is passionate about the equipment he sells. As we were talking I told him I made the switch from SS to tube gear about ten years ago and found that the $900 tube integrated performed better than my $2300 integrated. I told him the make of my SS integrated and he said, I know where you bought that amp and those *&%#*** don't have any clue about audio and should be selling ice cream cones. After my last visit to the above store I'm inclined to agree with him, safe to say they lost a good client.


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PostPosted: Sun Sep 03, 2017 9:45 pm 
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I know it's late but I'm having trouble picking out your point with this thread, unless it's the idea of surprise that our passion could possibly attract a=holes in the sales department.

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PostPosted: Tue Sep 05, 2017 5:42 am 
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Winter_vinyl wrote:
I know it's late but I'm having trouble picking out your point with this thread, unless it's the idea of surprise that our passion could possibly attract a=holes in the sales department.



Yes, using the heart or emotions as a parasitical blind side access point is of the finest human tradition even on down to the most ancient times.

I'm of the opinion that the first conspiracy began when the same two proto-human apes sought the same given female. (or similar scenario)

That conspiracy, blindsiding, and emotional manipulation began as part of the precursor to consciousness and intelligence. Obvious enough on pondering... that it's difficult to argue otherwise.

Thus conspiracy and manipulation of or through the emotional considerations of others has been around before humans even had idea that they existed, ie 500,000 years or more.

The conclusion is to never dismiss signs or concerns of conspiracy. After all...it's literally - older than the hills. Not paranoia, too far of an opposite swing, but to be aware and use the understanding - as the tool that it is.

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PostPosted: Tue Sep 05, 2017 6:23 am 
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Quote:
He asks me if I have the armboard and I tell him no, he tells me you have to find one or make one, when I asked if he would get one for me he gives me attitude and says I DON'T HAVE TIME TO DO THAT! Over the last two years I've spent $3000 and probably close to $9000 in all over the years.


I believe that the real message was "it doesn't make sense for me to search out an armboard or make one due to opportunity cost". He probably could have put it better, however, as you said, he was eating his lunch (at his work bench no doubt). A discerning person would perhaps have waited until said lunch was eaten before asking for what essentially is a favour unless he was prepared to pay (yeah, everyone says they would until the bill comes in). Think about it............ what is a manager's function, and is the tech paid at flat rate?

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PostPosted: Tue Sep 05, 2017 10:44 am 
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I can't comment on your specific situation, but I will point out that spending money at a business does not necessarily make someone a valuable customer. If the business doesn't make any profit on the money you spent, they probably have little interest in seeing you back to spend again. The lack of profit can be from the customer constantly grinding them for better prices until the deal is at cost, or taking up a great deal of time during or after the sale.

I attended a sales conference a few years ago, and one of the seminars was how businesses and sales people should never be afraid to fire customers which don't make them any money. The premise was that some customers have an unreasonable expectation about the service they are entitled to, and that companies and sales reps are better off cutting them loose, and then spending that time on new profitable business. This premise seemed counter intuitive to some in the audience, but having spent a few years selling retail electronics, it made sense to me.


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PostPosted: Tue Sep 05, 2017 11:35 am 
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Also, Mac said he spent 3000 in the last 2 years, and about 9000 in the hobby. He did not say he'd spent these amounts at the establishment in question, so it's unclear whether he's a good customer of the store, or just another guy who wants a favour thrown in and is bugging someone on their lunch break. If I knew that a quoted price had gone up on a used piece, I'd ask the guy why it had gone up.

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PostPosted: Tue Sep 05, 2017 12:04 pm 
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electrafixion wrote:
I can't comment on your specific situation, but I will point out that spending money at a business does not necessarily make someone a valuable customer. If the business doesn't make any profit on the money you spent, they probably have little interest in seeing you back to spend again. The lack of profit can be from the customer constantly grinding them for better prices until the deal is at cost, or taking up a great deal of time during or after the sale.

I attended a sales conference a few years ago, and one of the seminars was how businesses and sales people should never be afraid to fire customers which don't make them any money. The premise was that some customers have an unreasonable expectation about the service they are entitled to, and that companies and sales reps are better off cutting them loose, and then spending that time on new profitable business. This premise seemed counter intuitive to some in the audience, but having spent a few years selling retail electronics, it made sense to me.



That seems like a short-termist outlook. Just because someone has been a hassle and not as profitable a customer as hoped does not mean that their next purchase would not make the retailer a lot of profit.

I can only assume your sales conference was a long time ago before the advent of social media. In the past if a customer had a bad retail experience only his friends get to know about it. These days hundreds of his FB/social media friends get the story and if the business has a FB page the customer will likely post on there too which means all your customers get to see it. These days businesses have to be thick skinned and overly helpful to resolve issues. You only have to look at the problems caused by bad reviews on the popular business review websites (Tripadvisor etc) and threads on this website to see that this is the case.


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PostPosted: Tue Sep 05, 2017 12:11 pm 
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Quote:
The premise was that some customers have an unreasonable expectation about the service they are entitled to, and that companies and sales reps are better off cutting them loose, and then spending that time on new profitable business.


I agree with this. However, sales is a human interaction business and there are nice ways to "fire" customers. But it is also a two edged sword. Some businesses are really bad and stiff their customers. I had just such an experience this past year. Dealing with a business that makes promises that are not kept and waiting five months to finish a job that was left hanging. I "fired" him and got someone else.

Some people just have an attitude that makes them difficult to deal with, be they customers, techs, or salesmen.


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PostPosted: Tue Sep 05, 2017 12:12 pm 
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bg74vic wrote:
That seems like a short-termist outlook. Just because someone has been a hassle and not as profitable a customer as hoped does not mean that their next purchase would not make the retailer a lot of profit.

I can only assume your sales conference was a long time ago before the advent of social media. In the past if a customer had a bad retail experience only his friends get to know about it. These days hundreds of his FB/social media friends get the story and if the business has a FB page the customer will likely post on there too which means all your customers get to see it. These days businesses have to be thick skinned and overly helpful to resolve issues. You only have to look at the problems caused by bad reviews on the popular business review websites (Tripadvisor etc) and threads on this website to see that this is the case.

Sorry but problem customers don't suddenly become prize buyers, that's not how humans work. No company gets all the customers, so the key is to take care of the good ones, and let the less desirable ones end up somewhere else. Firing a customer doesn't require something dramatic that will end up on the internet, you just have stop showing an interest in helping them or bidding on their business.

The notion that the customer is always right and must be taken care is old fashioned, were it not, companies that lived that motto like Sears would still be around.


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PostPosted: Tue Sep 05, 2017 1:47 pm 
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electrafixion wrote:
bg74vic wrote:

The notion that the customer is always right and must be taken care is old fashioned, were it not, companies that lived that motto like Sears would still be around.


Picking and choosing clients works assuming there are more clients available. For example, in a recession that's a guaranteed fail. Or in a company where sales leads are distributed, sometimes you get cherries and sometimes you get the pits. But if the pits is all you're getting in the short term, you try and make due.

Again, this wouldn't be necessary in ideal the ideal world.

I keep thinking of the movie "Glengarry Glenross".

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PostPosted: Tue Sep 05, 2017 1:51 pm 
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racecars wrote:
I keep thinking of the movie "Glengarry Glenross".

One of my favorite cinematic moments of all time!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Yz246_Pjjkc


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PostPosted: Tue Sep 05, 2017 3:50 pm 
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As Electrafixation pointed out, sometimes it's necessary to fire a customer. It's simply the 80/20 rule in force. I understand the comments about social media, and I actually do take the time to read the comments, as I do the feedback here. It doesn't take long to weed out the comments that are driven by selfishness, and entitlement, or to read between the lines. For instance, in the OP's case, I can't help but wonder why he'd go into a shop at lunch, and question someone about a price on something that he already knew about, and then ask about the price for another thing that he already knew. Personally, seeing that the price on both went up by $100 (2x275=550 vs 650; and 200 vs 300), I'd say that the OP was quoted the "get out of here pricing strategy", on items that he probably had no intention of ever buying anyway. No sympathy here!

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PostPosted: Tue Sep 05, 2017 3:51 pm 
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providing proper customer service is a skill that many have not acquired. This is certainly not limited to audio shops.
No customer is worse than no customer.


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PostPosted: Tue Sep 05, 2017 7:15 pm 
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A dealer's strongest attribute is providing personal service, pre and post sale. If they can't do that right, why not buy everything from internet direct? Sure as hell would be a lot cheaper!

I've had all sorts of experiences from dealers, and fortunately most have been quite positive, which is really respectable given my relatively young age compared to their typical customer. A few want to interrogate you on how much money you have at home under the guise of "system matching."


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PostPosted: Tue Sep 05, 2017 7:24 pm 
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electrafixion wrote:
The notion that the customer is always right and must be taken care is old fashioned, were it not, companies that lived that motto like Sears would still be around.


Sears did not die because of that comment. Sears died because management implemented Ayn Rand's ideas of capitalist competition between departments.


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