Today we’d like to introduce you to Greg Mayo.
So, before we jump into specific questions about the business, why don’t you give us some details about you and your story.
Greg’s Vintage Guitars Atlanta began with me writing articles for my blog “The Vintage Guitar News and Views”. I got my capitol for my business by cashing in my 401K and used it to purchase a few guitars as well as start up an internet based business. This was long before DSL or mobile devices were out so it has been a learning experience, but also a growing experience. Before the advent of Facebook and even before there was Myspace, I joined and supported forum rooms related to guitars and music. By building a loyal following and treating my clients the way I would want to be treated, I slowly kept growing and becoming recognized in the industry. I have had my shop and gear in international guitar magazines, both print and online, and have been filmed for the Discovery Channel and I just keep doing what I love.
Overall, has it been relatively smooth? If not, what were some of the struggles along the way?
It really wasn’t that difficult to take something I had been doing for years, as a player and guitar geek, do my due diligence and research and begin to make purchases in building my inventory. It did require, and still does require, a lot of reading, be it publications, history books on various builders and companies, as well as constantly reading material in regards to all the various guitars and gear that has been produced over the last 100 years. I don’t think one can ever know everything about their business. I subscribe to constantly learning and not stagnating in my knowledge of my business. Learning how to build an internet based business was by the seat of my pants through trial and error. I also concentrated on building strong client relations and coming up with marketing. Luckily, I was already involved in many of the music and guitar gear forum rooms and then jumped on social media as it grew and developed. The hardest part has been not having a brick and mortar storefront. It has inhibited growth on a more local level, but I have developed an international clientele by being internet based, so that has made up the difference.
Alright – so let’s talk business. Tell us about Greg’s Vintage Guitars Atlanta – what should we know?
Like the name says…Greg’s Vintage Guitars, my business focus is buying and selling vintage guitars. However, I also deal in amps, guitar parts and memorabilia. My business began in the vintage acoustic side, with a particular brand out of Nashville, TN called “The Grammer Guitar” which was produced in the late 1960’s. My logo even represents The Grammer Guitar by using its headstock (Thank you, Billy Grammer R.I.P.) and I slowly built my inventory to include some pretty rare and cool vintage electric guitars and amps. I would say the thing I am most proud of is I have continued doing what I love. Taking it one day at a time, constantly learning my craft and honing my skills. What probably sets me apart is the close relationships I build with my clients and with my followers on social media.
Any shoutouts? Who else deserves credit in this story – who has played a meaningful role?
I was lucky enough to meet some very knowledgeable mentors along my journey. Frankie Moates, the original owner of Atlanta’s Vintage Guitars, was a great source of inspiration as well as information. I remember one conversation I had with him a few years before he passed away. He listened to what I stated I wanted to do and dug up a stack of old guitar magazines and a few books and with a smile said, “read as much as you can”. I have always remembered what he told me and I have done just that. Al Cleghorn, who has been a huge fan and mentor, is a walking encyclopedia when it comes to vintage specs and tidbits of information.
Other cheerleaders are other dealers, both locally and out of state. We are a close family in this business and with few exceptions (because you know every close family has those who do not want you to succeed for various reasons) we pretty much all support each other in some fashion. Which is another reason I enjoy doing what I do. My biggest cheerleader and advocate is my girlfriend, she is so supportive and I cannot say enough about having someone close that believes in you and what you are doing.
- Address: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Website: http://www.gregsguitars.net
- Facebook: Greg’s Guitars
- Twitter: Greg’s Guitars
All photos property of Greg’s Guitars.