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Re: Kim, some questions.....


Despite Kevin and others unfounded conspiratorial tones, the answer to your
questions about advertising is very simple. Gibson sells every echoplex
they make. That has been true for years, and usually there are long
backorder lists. There is no reason to pay for advertising campaigns when
you already have more customers than you can handle. You could certainly
argue that Gibson should produce more echoplexes. However, I think they
already agree with that which is why they have devoted a lot of effort and
money over the past 9 months to move the production to Trace-Elliot and
ramp it up to a higher level.

At 10:10 PM -0700 8/5/00, John Tidwell wrote:
>Like a lot of other folks on the list, I'm looking
>forward to seeing what the Electrix Repeater will do.
>Even though I don't currently own any Electrix equip-
>ment, I'm well aware of their name thru advertisements
>& product reviews. I'm quite sure I will be seeing
>plenty of ads & reviews on the Repeater. Which brings
>me to my questions...
>Why have I never seen an ad for the EDP?

Advertisements for the echoplex were in various magazines when it first
came out in 1994. Most of the major magazines did substantial reviews. (I
never got permission to put those reviews on the LD pages despite some
efforts, and those magazines never bothered to put the reviews online once
they got their own websites. I think I'll put them up anyway.)

Once the idea of the echoplex caught on a bit, there was never any reason
to do more advertising.

>It was only a
>stroke of luck on my part that I received a catalog
>from Thoroughbred Music some years ago that actually
>contained a photo & description of the EDP.

Even that is rare, since dealers usually move echoplexes very quickly. Not
much reason to use a spot in the catalog for something that is already 

>If not for
>that, I would still be drawing on my memories of the
>1970s when I heard the word "Echoplex". As a matter of
>fact, I only became aware of "Loopers Delight" because
>I had to web-search for ANY info on the EDP.

Looper's Delight continues to grow, getting about 35-40,000 hits a week.
About 45-50,000 different people come to the site every month. That easily
compares to a lot of print publications for musicians. LD is hardly
obscure, and the growth rate is accelerating. This is why I have had to
move it on to its own server.

If this site were the only place a product like the echoplex were ever
discussed, it would still easily generate a lot of sales and enable a
viable business. To me, this is a perfect example of how the internet
changes things. The traditional, more expensive means of communicating
about a product are superfluous. Little home-brew community sites like this
are much more powerful.

>Does Gibson intend to run any ads for the EDP. Will
>we see any product reviews when the upgrade is finally

I assume they will resume ads once they have ramped the production up to
where the demand is. That has always been their plan. They have produced
some nice looking brochures that they had at NAMM, and presumably will be
the basis for an ad campaign. I'm also aware of at least one major magazine
doing a review of the echoplex for an upcoming issue, presumably that is
the result of Gibson marketing folks pushing it again. It's pretty rare to
get a review for something that has been on the market for 5 years.

>I hate to think that the EDP might die
>another slow death simply because people have to
>subscribe to "Loopers Delight" to be aware of it.

Interest in the Echoplex is certainly not dying! If anything, it is higher
than ever.

I think you have also dramatically underestimated how effective LD has been
at bringing attention to Looping products such as the echoplex. This site
alone generates hundreds of echoplex sales each year for Gibson, and there
would be more if they made more. Same with other looping products. Line6
sold a lot more DL-4's than they expected because of us, and I'm sure
Electrix will experience the same. As Gibson ramps up their production
again, Looper's Delight will probably sell all of those too.

You also rather mis-state things by saying "the EDP might die another slow
death." It never died, it survived!

The reason why the Echoplex is still in production today is due to the
clamor and interest from people in this community. Divisions at Gibson were
closed, moved, reopened, closed again. Entire staffs quit or got laid off
or reassigned or whatever. Production was transported across a continent
and then across an ocean. Gibson closed Oberheim because it was
unprofitable, the products were not getting interest, and they couldn't
make money on what did sell, with one exception: the EDP. The echoplex was
kept alive through all of that chaos because Gibson believes in the
product, and I don't see how anybody could deny that. It sells like mad, it
makes money, and whenever they don't make enough of them, they never hear
the end of it. Why wouldn't they believe in it?

They've recently invested a lot of time and money in starting up the
production again at Trace-Elliot. They've been training personnel and
setting up customer service operations for it. They've revised designs,
retooled factories, done their homework. That's a lot of commitment, and
it's largely due to us. We moved that mountain. (And if you want to know
how hard that is to do, ask the opcode user community. They could have
learned a few lessons from us.)

>Kim, I know you don't call the shots on how Gibson
>spends their advertising dollars, but you're certainly
>in a better position than I am to understand it.

Thank you for taking the time to ask questions and try to learn what the
actual situation is. Hopefully others here will learn from your example.
Too often we have people throwing tantrums, making accusations, and
creating rumors without anything to back it up. This sort of thing only
hurts us as a community. Matthias and I (and I'm sure the other independent
inventors here) put our lives, sweat, and savings into these crazy
projects. If we don't succeed at what we do, we don't go on to do anything
else, real simple. Trashing us and our work with nothing to base it on only
hurts you and everybody else in the long run.

>What gives?

Hopefully this helps. Feel free to ask more questions if you like.


Kim Flint                     | Looper's Delight
kflint@loopers-delight.com    | http://www.loopers-delight.com