Great Memories Sold Here

If you’re in the retail tackle business, you could make a pretty good argument that you’re in a lot of different businesses all at once.

For new anglers, you’re in the education business. Then there’s the entertainment business — fishing gets all the battle it can handle from things like video games, television and the stick and ball sports. And, of course, you must sell, sell, sell to keep the lights on and the doors open.

That’s a lot to do and a lot to master, but sometimes there’s even more. Father’s Day is one of those times. It’s a time when it pays to expand your scope and put your focus on the business of making memories.

On some level, memories are all we have and all we take with us. They can and should be a real lynchpin of the fishing industry — creating the kinds of memories that keep us coming back for more whether they’re focused on family, friends and vacation or competition, skills development and accomplishment. Usually, it’s a mix of all of that.

But times like Father’s Day, Mother’s Day, Christmas and others can really put the focus on memory creation. When they present themselves, you should focus on that, too.

Never mind that your store is there 24 hours a day, 365 days a year and open for most of them. If you want and need to emphasize memory making, you better market it, just as when you want to emphasize price you have a sale.

Father’s Day is a great time to change gears and remind everyone that dad is not going to remember that necktie, but he will remember a trip to the lake with the family. The tie will eventually get stained and dusty and be thrown out — perhaps sooner than later — but the memory of a fishing trip will suffer none of those indignities.

I’m still waiting to see a tackle shop with a sign out front that reads, “Great Memories Made Here.” If a shop can back that up once you step inside, I think it’s a very powerful message and a very powerful marketing position. It would make me stop and go inside. I’d look around with fresh eyes and a new attitude. I’d want to see the store that made such a boast and talk to the proprietor who felt he could deliver on it.

It’s a bold statement, but if you can’t live up to it even without the message, you should consider a very different sign: Closed.

Happy Father’s Day, and good luck in your role as memory maker.

A rising tide lifts all boats. Let’s be that tide.