Black Friday & the AV Industry: Does it Help, Hurt, or Hardly Matter?

tv-giftIt’s that time of year here in the United States – we just celebrated Thanksgiving and we’re in the thick of the holiday season.

And, of course, the day after Thanksgiving (or, really, Thanksgiving day in many stores) means Black Friday – the day where people go crazy, hit the stores crazy early, and sometimes even trample each other all in the name of getting the best deals.

And then of course there’s Small Business Saturday and Cyber Monday. We can’t forget those. No, we certainly can’t.

But at the end of it all – it’s all about getting the best deals and saving the most money.

Every year, the deals seem crazier and the savings more steep. Everywhere you look there’s a list of the BEST deals out there. Sony even promoted all their best Black Friday deals on their company blog and on Facebook.

And it’s no surprise that each year, the crazier deals and bigger savings always seem to be around tech products. Displays, sound systems, projectors, computers – you name it – you can find a deal on it at this time of year.

But being an employee of a company that writes about this stuff and covers this stuff (yes, primarily in the commercial market, but still) – got me to thinking.

I work with many of the manufacturers of these products (both residential and commercial – both professional and consumer) on a daily basis. I know how important the bottom line is. I know how important each and every sale is.

So I just began to wonder – does a time of year like this HELP, HURT, or HARDLY MATTER to those companies?

Many consumers wait all year to buy their TVs or sound systems on Black Friday… never wanting to pay full price.

Are there ENOUGH consumers out there waiting for the big discounts that it’s hurting the manufacturers during the other parts of the year? Because it seems as if each company and every retailer is just trying to out-do the competition with regards to “who’s got the better deal.”

Would it behoove the manufacturers and the retailers to offer crazy deals and discounts throughout the year?

Or is it just all about markup and then discounting the giant markup?

Does the quality of the product suffer? Does the consumer suffer? Does the retailer suffer? Does the manufacturer suffer?

Does NO ONE suffer? Am I just reading entirely too far into all of this mess?

SOMEONE HELP ME! I WANT TO KNOW!!!

And then, on a somewhat separate but somewhat related notemy Facebook news feed was completely saturated with Sony promoting their 4K TV Black Friday deals. You can now get a 4K TV from Sony for a mere $3K! WOOP. I mean, I’ve seen a 4K display in person and yeah, it’s pretty – but we’ve had this discussion before, is 4K in the home REALLY necessary? Does it actually matter? No. But that’s neither here nor there.

What I’m trying to get at with all of this is the fact that I’m truly, honestly just looking for an answer to the original question – DOES Black Friday HURT, HELP, or HARDLY MATTER to the AV industry? Does it only affect the consumer side? Or, by some power of relativity or osmosis or something or other does the CONSUMER side of the industry ultimately affect or reflect what’s happening on the COMMERCIAL side?

Let me know your thoughts in the comments below. I’m curious. Let’s chat about this.

And be honest. If I’m just totally over thinking the whole thing then tell me I’m done and it’s time to go home.