LPD Music Partners With Line 6
LPD Music, in Madison Heights, Mich., has partnered with Line 6 as a distributor of the Line 6 PODS, effects, digital wireless systems, and accessories. Vice president Tom Vallis has been both surprised and pleased with this new venture.
How did your arrangement with Line 6 come about?
Shortly after Winter NAMM, Line 6 had made the decision to work with a distribution partner for specific products, mostly everything with the exception of their guitars and amplifiers, which remain dealer direct. They wanted to reach a broader range of dealers. They began interviewing distribution partners and felt as though we were the best fit. Even though we are a full line distributor, I think Line 6 went with us because we specialize in the guitar end of things. We placed our first order in May, and things are going extremely well so far. It has actually exceeded our expectations.
In the big picture what does this partnership mean for LPD?
It’s just now getting out of the gate. In the long run I think it will help us to promote our proprietary products, as well as the other products we carry, bringing us to the forefront as far as distributors go. I think there is an impression among some dealers that we are more of a regional operation because we don’t have multiple locations to ship from. We have our one location here in the Detroit area. However, we do sell nationwide, particularly our proprietary products, which are geared toward Latin markets. Those products are sold heavily in California, Texas, Florida, and New York. Again, maybe this will bring us more in the forefront, and dealers will realize that we are not just a regional distributor. What’s great about Line 6 is, unless you are a direct dealer, we are going to be the only source. Our focus will be on getting Line 6 to smaller, mom and pop dealers who are not already carrying Line 6.
How are you marketing the Line 6 products to dealers?
We have a full line catalogue being released soon and will, of course, have a major spread of Line 6 in that. Our Web site will feature the products, including the password protected pages on our site, which are strictly for dealers. We have just sent out press releases to let people know. We plan on putting a lot of effort behind this. As I said, it has been great so far. I think this is one of the easiest products I have ever had to sell.
Looking ahead to the following year, what kind of growth do you think you will see as a result of the new partnership?
It might be a bit difficult to nail it down to Line 6. We recently took on distribution for Sparrow Guitars as well, which is a really cool product. Line 6 is a product that virtually every dealer can sell, without much effort. Our hope is to expand the scope of the product and get it into more stores. We are confident that our dealers will have great success in moving the product, and once they do, they will obviously have to come back for more. In the long run, we feel as though the Line 6 partnership will be very good for LPD.
Have you received any feedback from dealers yet or is it too early?
I think it is too early, but the reorders speak for themselves. We’ve been getting pretty regular reorders. Our first order came in late May and we’ve already had to restock quite a few of the items several times already.
Have things gone smoothly with Line 6 in terms of support and communication?
They have been wonderful to work with. They came out for trainings several times to insure that our staff is well versed in the products, which is very important. The training really helped to spark sales. We speak everyday and have developed a friendship in a short amount of time.
Does LPD have their sights set on any other product lines in the near future?
If you were to tell me a year ago that Line 6 was interested in working with us as a distributor, I wouldn’t have believed you. Most companies have sold direct to dealers only. Maybe now we will start seeing more major manufacturers deciding to work with a distributor on certain product lines. With that in mind, I suppose the sky’s the limit.