From the outset I want to be clear, I like buying gear, so much so I’ve forgotten I own stuff I once purchased in a moment of sale fever. This Black Friday some of you are going to want to buy something, but follow these simple tips and you should come out of Black Friday with something you treasure rather than something you regret.
Here are our top 5 tips to make sure you don’t waste money this Black Friday.
1. You Never Save Money When You Spend It
It’s the biggest lie in marketing, the idea that you are saving money when you spend it. The word ‘save’ in marketing speak is a relativism not an absolute. What I mean by this is that if you intend to buy the item anyway then you’ve saved money, the difference between what you would have paid for it and what you actually paid for it. If you did not intend to buy the item then you’ve not saved money you’ve spent money. If you have any doubt about this then look at your credit card statement next month. If you are looking to make a large investment, let’s say in a new UA Apollo or a Mac, then every time you spend money on smaller items you reduce your chance of owning the larger item, or look at it this way a $2000 audio interface is 20 $100 plug-ins you got in sales.
2. Plan To Save Money
If you look at some social media channels for a brand you may see someone say “when are you having a sale?” This is a smart person, wanting to buy something but hoping to REALLY save money on it. So before you start clicking the buy button randomly on any sale you see, take a moment to think about the things you have been hoping to buy for some time and put them top of the list.
3. Do Your Research
Sometimes sales look tempting but after a little research on Google and eBay you suddenly realise that the mega discount off the list price is not as attractive once you compare it to the regular deals. Sometimes it’s the mega deal that gets you to part with money you may have otherwise kept in the bank.
4. Don’t Get Into Debt ‘Saving’ Money
You might be tempted to load up your credit card or sign up on a credit agreement to ‘save’ money on Black Friday, take care before you make this decision, especially if the credit card or loan interest rate is higher than the money you hope to save.
As my father always says ‘profit is what you don’t spend.’
5. Buy Workhorse Products
I have a lot of stuff in my studio but there are some I keep reaching for again and again, it might be a reverb plug-in or a compressor. There are some microphones I use all the time and trusty hardware that I love on everything, these are the things worth investing your money in - the gifts that keep on giving, not the odd set of cheese grater samples or mic you may use if you ever get a bassoon player in the studio. Don’t spend money this Friday on stuff you might use one day but spend it on stuff that you have to use every day!
I hope this article hasn’t come across as some anti-capitalist rant, it’s not meant to be. There are going to be some really great deals to be had on Black Friday, but with some careful consideration you can make sure they are sound investments into your creative workflow, rather than random stuff you buy on a whim and regret later.