Business

Aim to Please: How Businesses Can Best Serve Bowhunters

Set yourself apart from the competition and keep customers coming back.
Photo Credit: Ryan Kirby

Author: Jackie Holbrook

Today’s increasingly online world forces retail stores to compete not only with each other but the click of a button. As discount websites grow in popularity promising top-of-the-line products for cheap, it’s important for retail storeowners, employees and customers to understand the true value of the products and services they’re selling. Whether you’re an archery shop owner or marketing a bowhunting product or service, there are several simple business practices you can incorporate to set yourself apart from the competition and keep customers coming back.

Build a Brand


To build your brand, create your identity, stay true to your messaging and make sure your product or service is something benefiting the customer by either improving their performance or solving a problem. Photo Credit: Ryan Kirby.

Branding – for ranchers it means making a mark and in today’s business market, branding is definitely about leaving a mark but we’re not just talking logos, slogans and advertisements. A true brand stands out and creates a dedicated following for its product or service. According to a B2B Marketing Leaders Report, 77 percent of top markers say branding is critical to a company’s growth. A good brand creates an emotional connection between the product and customer. For example, have you ever been in an argument with a buddy about which of your bows is better? There are plenty of excellent bow manufacturers on the market so, the argument probably had a lot more to do with brand loyalty than performance. Bowhunters can be especially passionate about their brands. Whether it’s their preferred camouflage or broadheads, many bowhunters credit their gear with their success, which gives the hunter an extra special emotional connection with that brand. To build your brand, create your identity, stay true to your messaging and make sure your product or service is something benefiting the customer by either improving their performance or solving a problem.

Grow Your Brand Ambassadors


Word of mouth marketing is one of the most powerful forms of advertising. Every customer is an opportunity to become a walking, talking testimonial for your business. Photo Credit: Ryan Kirby

If you haven’t heard of a brand ambassador, you’ve been in the woods too long. In the hunting industry, there are no shortage of hunting personalities representing clothing companies, archery equipment, scent-killers and more. However, brand ambassadors aren’t new and some companies forget there are brand ambassadors walking through the door every day. Word of mouth marketing is one of the most powerful forms of advertising. Every customer is an opportunity to become a walking, talking testimonial for your business. Bowhunting is a community and when someone visits a shop, buys a product or uses a service, they will probably report back to their friends about the experience, good or bad. Creating a following goes back to basic customer service, smile when people walk into the shop, answer questions, be helpful and create a positive experience. Poor customer service has caused 78 percent of customers to bail on a potential purchase, according to an American Express Survey. Plus, the White House Office of Consumer Affairs says a loyal customer is worth 10 times their first purchase. Not only will good customer service prove your value to this customer, it will pay you back and you may just earn a few more.

Be an Expert Resource


When customers seek out your products or services be prepared to be a trusted and reliable source of information. By answering questions openly and honestly, and talking about your personal experience with the product you add value to the purchase. Photo Credit: Shane Indrebo

Bowhunting is a never-ending learning curve filled with mastering the basics followed by trial and error in the field. From beginning bowhunters to expert archers, there’s always something new to know. When customers seek out your products or services be prepared to be a trusted and reliable source of information. By answering questions openly and honestly, and talking about your personal experience with the product you add value to the purchase. Being knowledgeable about the bowhunting rules in your state, how to hunt local game and troubleshooting gear problems, are all above and beyond service that will set you apart.  Providing honest and helpful information will keep customers coming back, even if the product is available for cheaper somewhere else.

Community Investment


Bowhunting is a tight-knit community and investing in both the hunting community and community where you do business, can really show customers you bring more than just a product. Photo Credit: Ryan Kirby.

Price, convenience, customer service and knowledge all factor in to a customer’s decision about where to take their business but customers also appreciate businesses that give back. Bowhunting is a tight-knit community and investing in both the hunting community and community where you do business, can really show customers you bring more than just a product. A small business poll by All State Insurance company shows almost half of small businesses contribute to local charities or do community service. For example, many archery shops across the country hold special archery shoots benefiting community causes like breast cancer awareness or local food banks. Many archery shops host free workshops for kids or sponsor seminars with experts addressing local bowhunting topics.

By proving you care more about the customer than their credit card, you can benefit both bowhunters and your bottom line.

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