When the pandemic hit the country in early 2020, many industries, including fishing, became paralyzed. Offices were shut down, supply chains were disrupted, and people were balancing working from home along with homeschooling. While the world was dealing with uncertainty, Pure Fishing began to speak to the millions of people who were looking for a way to get outside while still being safe. It was during this moment that the #FishThroughIt campaign was born.
With the country on lockdown, getting out of the house and to the lake was a great way to stay active in the outdoors while practicing social distancing. As the largest fishing company in the space, Pure Fishing recognized that there was a massive influx of people who were either discovering fishing for the first time or were re-discovering their love of a sport they used to enjoy. Recognizing that there was a need to support these new entrants who were stepping outside, the team at Pure Fishing felt it was their obligation to take the lead and began investing in welcoming these new anglers. The team understood that adjusting social media and marketing strategies would help to ensure these new entrants’ participation in the sport for years to come while helping to lift the industry.
While much of the marketing spend historically had been in endemic media to reach those who were already fishing, these new entrants posed a marketing challenge. How do you reach people to talk about fishing when they aren’t reading traditional fishing media? In a shift from historical thinking, Pure Fishing began to focus efforts on mainstream media and social media to reach new entrants. Wanting to ensure that the holidays in 2020 were a time of hope, the team partnered with Fishers of Men and Toys for Tots to put on the Ugly Stik World’s Largest Santa Fishing tournament on Lake Norman in North Carolina. With 298 anglers and 149 boats competing the “Santa Tournament” garnered national news coverage to help keep fishing top of mind in mainstream media.
Moving into 2021 the thinking remained as the pandemic continued to evolve and people flocked back to the outdoors. Wanting to keep the momentum going and make budding anglers feel welcomed in the sport, Pure Fishing launched the “One of Us” commercial spot which aired on CBS during the summer. Supported by brands Abu Garcia, Berkley, Plano, PENN, Shakespeare and Ugly Stik, the commercial spot spoke to those consumers who discovered fishing in 2020 and let them know that they’re “one of us” now.
Additional investment was made to reach more mainstream audiences through shows like My World with Mike Iaconelli. A legend in the bass fishing world, Mike’s show garners mass appeal by introducing fans of other professional sports like football, bowling, and mixed martial arts to fishing through his celebrity athlete guests. On the flip side, fishing fans get to see a glimpse into the world of other athletes as Mike spends a day in their shoes.
Pure Fishing is also continuing to fuel the momentum among young anglers by sponsoring high school and college fishing programs. By supporting initiatives like the BASS and Abu Garcia High School Combine and Abu Garcia College Series with Major League Fishing, the company is recognizing the positive impact that fishing can have on young adults and is helping to ensure that these programs can continue to blossom and provide structure for young anglers for years to come.
With this year’s Where Should Santa Fish After Christmas? initiative, Pure Fishing set out to support local fishing communities by offering them a chance to lobby for a visit from Santa and Berkley in support of their local community. After narrowing submissions down to the top five fishy communities, a consumer vote was taken with the winning community of Long Beach, California set to receive a visit from Santa on December 27 to fish and mingle with families at El Dorado East Regional Park. The community will also be receiving a donation on behalf of Berkley to improve the park, expand youth education programs, install line recycling containers, and update park spaces frequently used by youth groups.
As a leader in the industry, Pure Fishing proudly continues to pave the way in furthering participation in outdoor activities and in supporting the fishing community in creative ways. By reaching every niche within the fishing industry, from the avid angler to the multi-species anglers and the weekend bobber anglers, Pure Fishing strives to bring everyone together to do what we all love – fish!
Pure Fishing is a collection of the world’s favorite fishing brands. Every day, all around the world, someone experiences the joy of catching a fish with one of our products. From gear for epic battles at sea to a relaxing day with family at the lake, our portfolio includes the most recognized and admired brands in fishing tackle, lures, rods, reels and storage. Abu Garcia®, All Star®, Berkley®, Fenwick®, Fin-Nor®, Frabill®, Greys®, Hardy®, Hodgman®, Johnson®, JRC®, Mitchell®, Penn®, Pflueger®, Plano®, Shakespeare®, SpiderWire®, Stren®, Ugly Stik® and Van Staal®.