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News and Reviews at The Audio Classifieds

Blog posts on audio components and goings on at and in the audiophile and pro audio communities.

theaudioclassifieds: Return to Roots

George Washington need customers too... When you visit some web sites, the abundance of advertising can put you off. Why do people advertise when those advertisements irritate those for whom they are meant? Many sites will ask for money on condition that a visitor not be subjected to a dizzying variety of cookie-engineered, targeted, banner advertisements for which those advertisers have paid a premium to present their wares.


There was actually a time when buyers were as interested in the advertising as the sellers; when the cost of advertising was not prohibitive to the seller, and the potential buyer was willing to pay for that advertisment in print, considering that information as a valuable part of their news. Although they could depend on word-of-mouth advertising, one could rely on print to ensure accuracy of detail related to a potential purchase, the reputation of the seller, and the logistics of the potential sale.

The concept has not been lost on Google or Facebook, however what has been lost on them have been actual results. Try'bidding' on advertisments on Facebook against nameless others and then watch your money go 'poof.' Yes, you will see a neat 'dashboard' that supposedly details who you have reached, but do you really know whether you did in fact reach tthem? No. And what's more, when you get no results, it couldn't be the fault of Facebook. Itt must be you, right? Behind most every successful sale, is found, amazingly enough, a person: a face, a name, someoone with whom you correspond, meet, or discuss. Ebay understands this fact, and has built its business plan around elbowing its way between those two individuals and coopting any transaction so that in the end the primary winner is Ebay, regardless of however the transaction goes. Imagine relying on a web site to sell your home or a realtor who charges their 6% commission regardless of how the sale goes. Nowadays, print magazines and online organizations who proffer advertising, tend to be very present about pricelists and deadlines, up until the purchase of advertising - then - 'poof,' they're gone. Did they call to follow up and see whether your advertising is working? What needs to happen in addition to the advertising? What can be done to assess the advertisement and perhaps improve it? What is the vision of your business? In other words, are you actually meeting those folks you first intended to meet through the advertising? And, if the advertising worked, did anything else need to happen at all?

Advertising is essentially news that someone paid for because they believe that would benefit both of you. But the news must be accurate and timely, and (sadly to have to state) it must be truthful in order to be cost-effective. Someone who advertises half-baked truths, and offers too-good-to-be-true, is usually spending someone else's money and is interested in the short-term, short-sight, and the short-sell.

One alternative some have tried is to create a place where the advertising interests the visitor. A specific niche interests them but the advertising not so intrusive as to be targetted specifically to that person. When advertising is targeted, the target soon realizes that they are a target: that you are reading all their mail, visiting all their websites, and following all their friends and then using that information to trick then into buying something they probabaly don't actually need, want, nor can they afford. If they needed it, then wouldn't they searching for it on their own? It's a challenge to hoodwink the customers really worth having. Other customers you do attract will tend to be just like the advertiser: in it for the short-term, looking for the the quick buck, and the easy-out.

So, a safe bet is to chat, talk, or correspond with your seller or buyer and get to know them. Yes, a 'friend' at online community might actually end up being a worthwhile social acquaintance with whom you share something in common - good audio gear. I have put together such a platform and welcome audio fans to take advantage of it. And here is my sales pitch: visit The Audio Classifieds and post classified advertisements, create your own profile and have your own audio community, even publish blog articles like this one from your account. What do I get out of it? I might meet someone worth meeting - or even a classified advertising customer who values what I have to offer. I know, however, that whatever I gain will be good, because I am in it for the slow-buck, longterm satisfacttion and I am a real person providing news that can benefit us both.

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