The Sarasota Guitar Company
has been growing continuously since it started in June 2009. Scott Cook and his wife, both unemployed at the time, started selling guitars in a 10 feet by 10 feet booth at a flea market. By December that same year, they opened a store on Tamiami Trail in Sarasota
. The inspiration for the store came from Cook's son who started playing guitar.
"I told my son that if he kept practicing I would buy him a better guitar," Cook says. "When we went to a store to sell his old guitar and purchase a new one, I was surprised by the amount of people who were interested in buying them. From that point on, I started buying more guitars and selling them."
In addition to selling guitars at the store in Sarasota, Cook's company also uses the Internet to sell his wares. Since opening the Sarasota Guitar Company, Cook has hired 10 employees. "We hired 3 people to work in the store, we have 2 people working in a separate location on our Internet business, and then we have 5 guitar instructors," Cook says. "We plan to hire at least 3 more people in the next year."
Cook says his company has been successful because they offer fair prices and have marketed themselves well, however he says offering excellent customer service sets his company apart from other retailers.
"I think customer service has been lost in retail over the last couple of years," Cook says. "We offer our customers a 125% price guarantee, have a 30-day money back guarantee, and offer a one-year upgrade policy. We always take care of our customers."
Sarasota Guitar Company store is celebrating its one-year anniversary this month. Cook is very optimistic about the upcoming year, and hopes to open another store location soon.
Writer: Kimberly Patterson
Source: Scott Cook, Sarasota Guitar Company