Hi friends, a quick update regarding changes to our advisory service.
You may or may (or may not) be aware that we offer an advisory service, one of just a handful of businesses like ours doing so. Through this service, and a desire to assist hi-fi lovers, we’ve helped people around the world diagnose faults, improve their systems, purchase end-game hi-fi equipment and more.
We currently offer two levels of service:
- Brief advice, previously accessible via small donations
- Consults, for extended conversations
Both offer excellent value and insight for advice seekers and reduce productivity-killing, brain-draining unpaid conversations for me. You can read more on why I need to charge for the service, but let’s just say that if I didn’t, I’d spend all day answering questions rather than earning money and working on the equipment you love reading about.
I’m very pleased to offer the advisory service, as long as folks respect how we administer it. Unfortunately, despite mostly positive interactions, a few too many people don’t and it’s reached a point where a few changes are needed.
But first, a big shout-out and thank you to Liquid Audio friends, supporters and folks who do respect how we do things, including customers, advice seekers, consult purchasers, one-offs, regulars and even our first monthly donor. You know who you are!
I’ve included the following considerations in revising our advisory service:
- Our advisory service is not core business. It neither makes money nor do I need to offer it.
- The service offers invaluable advice and insight for recipients and a unique perspective that cannot easily be obtained elsewhere
- Advice interactions should at least break even, meaning un-and underpaid interactions should be eliminated
I recently helped an advice seeker with a high-end turntable and ancillary equipment purchase. I provided extended assistance via multiple lengthy calls and emails, far in excess of the small amount of time this individual purchased. This person lives locally, so this included a good-faith understanding that the equipment would come here for assessment and any work needed, and I wore some of the time-cost leading up to that.
Unfortunately, and despite several follow-ups, the equipment I advised him to purchase subsequently went to another local business that played no part in the process and doesn’t even offer an advisory service. What should have been a paid consult and follow-up work benefiting everyone involved, ended up with me working for less than a child’s minimum wage, a promise of work that never eventuated and valuable work for someone else who shouldn’t have received it.
Despite having received generous assistance, when I raised the issue, this ‘gentleman’ rudely dismissed me, like I was an annoyance, something he’d stepped on whilst out for a walk. I kid you not. This is unacceptable, it certainly won’t happen again.
Many people expect help, pretend they’ve donated or paid for an advice block, or even abuse me for suggesting that they should, as though paying for someone’s time is a concept from Alpha Centauri! This is like stealing from your mum after she cooks you dinner and it’s honestly hard to imagine what goes through the minds of people who think like this. People pick up so much information here and from my YouTube channel and I’m simply not interested in helping people I’ve probably already helped many times over, who never give anything back.
The reasonable out there will understand and I sincerely thank you for it.
We will continue to offer advisory services, with the following changes, effective immediately:
- We now only offer 10, 20, 30 and 60-minute pay-per-use advice blocks and consults
- Advice will be provided selectively, through a specific advisory service
- Advisory service recipients will receive assistance after payment is received
- Attempts to circumvent this process will be ignored
If you have any suggestions for further improvement to the service, I’d love to hear them in the comments below or by email. Thanks for understanding and as always friends, onwards 🙏
Well, I could never have predicted the response this post would generate. It’s funny, but I was nervous about posting my feelings about this, and yet the comments, calls, donations and email responses I’ve received have been amazing, mind-blowing actually! Quite literally everyone has been positive and supportive, with many sharing similar stories.
This genuine outflowing support has taken me by surprise, so again, thank you.