March 2010 Issue

Click the image above to read the full-screen digital edition of Angling Trade.

Contents Include:

  • Trade Show Skinny
  • The Changing Media Landscape
  • Using Social Media for Sales Effect
  • “Dear Mr. Print Editor
  • Bahamas Travel
  • A Tribute to the Great Charlie Meyers

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  1. Deeter-
    Just wanted to thank you for a great issue.

    First, Mueller’s article on print magazines struck a personal chord and was very well written. Print media won’t survive just by being there these days, but by being better than what else is out there. We all need to hold ourselves to this higher standard. Congrats on landing this young gun for AT. We all need more guys like him.

    Second, Mike Michalak’s article landed with a resounding thump in my brain pan. I may have even pumped my fist in the air a bit as I read it.

    I don’t know Mike well, and have even had some minor differences with the man, but he knows what he’s talking about and has hit the nail on the head here with what’s going wrong with the Flyfishing Industry.

    It’s us. All of us.

    Working for the quick buck, both by shortsighted retailers as well as manufacturers will lead to further failure of this industry as a whole. Michalak makes a good point about growing our industry from within, by teaching classes, guiding trips and making fly fishing more accessible to anyone who wants to learn.

    Teaching leads to growth in your business, as well proven by Mike’s track record.

    Discounting, turning a blind eye to the gray market and overloading inventory does no good for anyone except the manufacturers and reps, and slowly erodes the retailers. It has to stop.

    This little game we play has to work for all involved, rather than for one group on the shoulders of the other. It’s about time someone threw this out in the open, and I am glad Mike had the balls to do it.

    We all need to work together to keep this thing we love running. My business has been great so far this year and last, but like Michalak says, it takes a good business for everyone to really make this industry thrive. We need to come together, get out of our own way and get back to what got us here rather than chasing the fast money right now. Lump me in the “I agree” category and let’s hope his article hits the right eyes and ears.

    And finally, on a more personal note, Kirk, I see the influence of our friend CM on this recent issue. It may not always be popular, but sometimes you have to throw it out there and let everybody gasp for a minute while they think about it. Our buddy would be proud. Well done, M’friend.

  2. Chris Brodin on

    I’d like to follow up on Charlie’s comments but with a manufacturer’s point of view.
    First of all, Charlie and Mike are two of my better customers. Every year their numbers grow even as more and more product finds its way onto EBay and while other shops fail. The answer is obvious- good service. If a customer comes into your shop to size some boots or try out a rod and then leaves to buy it on the internet at a discount, you haven’t provided the service or education that he needs.
    Secondly, internet discounting is a way of life and there isn’t a product in the world that isn’t discounted. Everyone needs to deal with that reality and adjust their business model accordingly. I don’t think that it is the responsibility of manufacturers to patrol the web and look for discounters. If that were the case, we would have to attend every “retail” show in the winter and bust nearly half of our customers. I think that they have a perfect right to dump stuff that doesn’t sell; if they don’t learn their lesson about buying bad product, they will be out of business quickly. And in reality, I think that the impact on the market is minimal. At least our products aren’t being counterfeited, which steals money from both the manufacturer and the retailer.
    Thirdly, this is a very tiny market. Fly shops are becoming homogeneous in their offerings for the simple reason that the industry cannot support that many manufacturers. Very few fly shops would be able to brand their own products like The Fly Shop. And it also ignores the fact that the brand names of major manufacturers have a lot of appeal that has been built up by extensive advertising, promotion and the most important of all- word of mouth.
    Our business has grown quite a bit in the last few years. Our company pays attention to the quality of our products, but more importantly we offer our customers good service. I don’t know of any business at any level that has survived long term without it.

  3. Pingback: Patagonia Offers Online Catalog, Orvis Goes Social Media – What’s The Industry To Do? | The Trout Underground Fly Fishing Blog

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