For reasons, I’m very busy today. I’m not just busy, I’m super-busy.
I did take the time to send out a detailed (and long) email to a wonderful online-friend. I’m half-tempted to turn that email into this article, but it contains a significant amount of personal information that doesn’t really belong to me – and putting it out there in public may be something that isn’t appreciated.
So, it’d take some time to whittle it down to article length and then remove the personal bits. While I’ve described the situation to a number of people, today’s missive was both long and detailed.
It’d also be difficult to edit it to ensure that it didn’t come off entirely creepy or as a braggart. I do think, after some thought, that it could be wedged into an article, though I’m unsure of the type of appeal it’d have or if I’d be subjected to negative responses. As it involves someone other than myself, and they’d be likely to read the responses, I’ve decided to not write that article and subject them to the potential negative feedback.
I do want to distill it and share a piece with you.
I also want you to know that I’ve chosen the following words with care. Some of what I’m about to say can be seen as an endorsement and, indeed, it is. However, this endorsement has not been purchased, but is based on a pattern of behavior, lots of observation, and my own personal experiences.
Yes, it’s true that I spoil the eldest hoodlum. Yes, she gets a great deal of attention. Yes, she gets expensive things.
I don’t need to justify that to anyone and I’m not asking for opinions on the matter. If the circumstances were fully understood and disclosed, it’d help explain it a great deal better. Those stories are hers to tell and she’s well and truly equipped to come on here and write her own damned articles if she wants to tell you about ’em!
In fact, she’s very much invited to write articles for the site – just as you are. I ain’t scared! Y’all can write about all sorts of music related things and I’m happy to facilitate that.
Now that we have that out the way…
She got some lovely gifts and is very happy with her new guitar and all the sundry equipment that came with it.
These gifts were purchased from a company known as ‘Sweetwater.’
These gifts were relatively expensive, because I got her professional equipment that should, with proper care, both serve her well and last her the rest of her life.
I do not know if they’re aware of this site.
I do know that they’re familiar with me. I do know that I’ve had numerous interactions with them in the past. I do have reason to expect they know that we musicians tend to speak out about exceptional service, deals, or things like informative sales and service staff.
The representative knows me by name and I have done business with them in the past. They also knew the reasons for my purchases.
They did not give me a discount on my purchases.
They did not ask for me to mention them on this site.
They did not ask for, or indicate they wanted, an endorsement. They did not ask me to link to them. They did not ask for a favorable review. We did not discuss this site, my opinions of their service and support, or anything of that nature.
What they did do was go out of their way, and at their expense, make her gift reception a better experience. Specifically, they included gifts of their own. They spent their money to include extras that were not ordered and this incurred no additional fees at my end.
These extras were not insignificant. It was not just a t-shirt. It was well beyond and above anything one might expect or demand. It was a personalized touch and something most people aren’t going to expect from a web store. These additions were incurred at their expense, and without any strings attached. (Well, no… They did include strings – but they were for a guitar.)
(One of the secrets to this sort of personalized service is to do things like place your orders by phone, but that’d be another article and for another time.)
It’s because of this, because of this personalized behavior, that I’m comfortable saying that you can add (for whatever it’s worth to you) Sweetwater to the list of companies with whom I’ve had a great series of satisfying interactions.
However, I feel it’s imperative that I at least strive to be open about such things and that I disclose any biases I may have, any gifts that have been received, and any rewards that may prejudice my statements.
I do, after all, do some reviews and have talked a number of you through purchasing a guitar, or related equipment, as well having provided direct links to retailers which some of you have used.
It’s important, I feel, that this be aboveboard and openly disclosed.
Sweetwater did not give these gifts with any conditions, or mentions, of publicity.
It is because of these gifts that I’m mentioning them – but it is not because of them specifically. It is because they’ve continued to do things similar and have shown me a pattern of good service and support.
They did not buy my endorsement. They earned it by doing things like knowing my name, always having an answer, and working hard to keep me satisfied.
Which is a bit amusing, ’cause I usually use a competitor! I’ve used Sweetwater in the past but I’d actually tried to use a competitor and they couldn’t get me the GLP Standard in the color that she wanted. We were able to secure the last available one from Sweetwater and I chose to just place the entire order there – even though their competitor gives me a discount.
So, I’m pretty happy with them and have no problem adding them to a list of retailers that I will acknowledge as having exceeded my expectations.
Which, and weigh it as much or as little as you like, is an official endorsement from me.
There’s also room on the list of approved retailers for more than one company. Hell, it’d be a great world if every single musical instrument retailer was working hard enough for me to endorse them. That seems unlikely.
But, I feel it’s important to disclose my biases and to disclose any gifts that have been given, as opposed to things that I pay for directly. While this didn’t directly come as a gift with the intent that it be mentioned here on the site, it still seems like the ethical thing to do. This will continue to be my policy.
Anyhow, let’s get on with today’s article!
Continue reading “TheBuddha Approves #3: How do Guitar Pickups Work?”