Crimson Trace

News | Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Sturm Reports Q2 Earnings, Cites Slowdown in Demand

Sturm, Ruger & Company, Inc. (NYSE:RGR) reports net sales of $153.7 million and fully diluted earnings of $1.12 per share, compared with net sales of $179.5 million and fully diluted earnings of $1.63 per share in the second quarter of 2013, a drop of 14%. Ruger CEO Michael O. Fifer attributed the drop in earnings to a "drop in demand for firearms and accessories."


Brownells Emergency & Survival Gear Kits Keep You Prepared, Save You Money

Brownells has released its own emergency and survival gear kits tailored to meet customers' needs in specific situations. Each kit comes with its own bag, backpack or plastic box, and includes a Brownells ESG hook-and-loop patch or sticker that attaches to the outside and identifies the type of kit for quick reference in an emergency.


Gun Racing at the USPSA Open Nationals & Fast-Draw with Taran on Shooting USA

This week on Shooting USA, it's the fastest run and gun racing of all, with fully enhanced Open Division guns competing for the national title. Plus, the inside story of STI, the employee owned company that has claimed more national titles than any other manufacturer


Bushnell Named Title Sponsor of Precision Rifle Series and its Championship Match

Bushnell has announced a title sponsorship agreement with the Precision Rifle Series (PRS), hosted September 26 to 28 in Frost, Texas In addition to the series sponsorship, Bushnell is the title sponsor of the Precision Rifle Series Championship Match.


Gallery Of Guns Honors And Awards Hunter Education Instructors

GalleryofGuns.com, in conjunction with the International Hunter Education Association (IHEA-USA) is proud to announce the first two instructor selections in its "Champions of Hunter Education" program. GalleryofGuns.com has awarded each of these two instructors with a new Ruger American rifle


Tonight on America Rifleman TV

Tonight, "American Rifleman TV" goes to Columbia, Mo., for the best of the best in action pistol shooting at one of the longest-running and most historic pistol competitions, the MidwayUSA & NRA Bianchi Cup National Championship.


Doug Koenig Championship Season Presents Chasing longbeards in Kansas

It's mid-April and Doug sets out for Lincoln, Kansas with Leupold Executive John Snodgrass hunting for Rio Turkeys this week; the duo discuss the versatility of Leupold's DeltaPoint™ 2 sight as the perfect choice for their separate pieces of equipment.


Orion at Home Provides Individuals an Affordable Electronic Scoring Option

Orion Scoring System is pleased to announce the release of Orion at Home. While Orion is primarily known for managing competitions, Orion at Home allows individual athletes to train with Orion from a home range.


Apex Back As Sponsor Of Smith & Wesson IDPA Back Up Gun Nationals

Officials with the International Defensive Pistol Association (IDPA) announced that Apex Tactical Specialties has once again signed on as a major sponsor of the Smith & Wesson IDPA Back Up Gun Nationals taking place November 6-8, 2014.


STI International, Inc. names Greg Mooney, new President and CEO

The Board of Directors and Employee Owners of STI International, Inc. announced yesterday that Greg Mooney has been appointed President and CEO.


GLOCK Pledges $150K to CMP Talladega Marksmanship Park

GLOCK, Inc. has contributed $50,000 to the Civilian Marksmanship Program in support of its new CMP Talladega Marksmanship Park, which opens in the spring of 2015. The contribution is the first of three annual donations GLOCK Inc. has pledged to the CMP to benefit its new shooting sports park in Talladega County, Alabama.


Ruger Introduces the All New, Striker-Fired LC9s Compact 9mm Pistol

Sturm, Ruger & Company, Inc. (NYSE-RGR) is proud to announce the introduction of the all new Ruger® LC9s™ pistol, a striker-fired version of the award-winning LC9® pistol.


FEATURE

Between The Berms: Turn Up The Volume

So, we're in a bit of a downturn in terms of gun sales.

It's summer, the usual slow period for gun sales, and we're coming off an off-the-charts sales cycle that has left some companies feeling hungover. In fact, the most frequent topic to come up in industry discussions is the issue of sales.

Tuesday afternoon I spoke to a good friend at one company who asked me what I was hearing. What I'm hearing is what most people are hearing. A whole lot of trepidation followed by a whole lot of "what do you see happening?"

For the larger companies, the ones that have been around and whose leadership has been around, the cyclical nature of firearms industry sales is nothing new. These people know what to expect and have a sense of how to react to the situation.

The best among them chose a course through the recent sales shockwave that kept them living within their means. These companies won't see layoffs beyond the usual staff adjustments and normal attrition.

That's good news if you're an employee at one of these companies. If you're not at one of those companies, I have some bad news for you.

Those that did not take the long view will find themselves under greater and greater pressure as they stumble through the downturn. And while it might not be good for their companies and their employees, it could reap rewards for consumers in the form of lower prices, aggressive rebates and attractive special offers.

With a saturated distribution channel companies will be forced to compete more aggressively for limited customer dollars. And in order to sell in this buyer's market they will have to focus more on marketing.

Traditionally, the first area to suffer when companies cut back is the marketing department. Ads are pulled from upcoming magazines. Trade show staff is reduced. Sponsorship opportunities are passed by. And in some cases, department personnel is reduced.

In its wake a general climate of austerity emerges when what is really needed is a status quo, or even an increase, in marketing spend. Instead of holding back and riding out the storm, companies should turn to their marketing team and unleash their creativity.

This of course assumes that the people hired to do the marketing are - what's the word? oh yeah - creative. It also assumes that the people in charge at the company can relinquish enough control to let them be creative.

Not every CEO understands what marketing does beyond spending lots of money, which explains why they are quick to cut back. Those that do understand the important role their marketing team plays, now's the time to tell them "do your thing boys and girls."

All that time brand building, all that money spent on customer acquisition and a customer database, and all that social media "engagement" now needs to come into play.

Sitting in a meeting with one of the sharpest marketing people in the industry, the head of a growing organization was told they needed to be "loud." Being loud is a very simplified way of looking at it but it is very, very accurate.

And it's what is called for now, during the slow sales period of the annual firearms sales cycle. In short, it's time to turn up the volume.

If you're sitting in the marketing department wondering how to do that, well, I'd suggest starting with one of those cardboard bankers boxes. You're going to need that to clean out your desk.

For the rest of you that get it, have at it. Now is your time.

- Paul Erhardt, Editor, the Outdoor Wire Digital Network

Got shooting sports news? Send us an email at info@shootingwire.com.


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