Disrupt the Hunting Industry

I want to expand on Adam Singer’s (@AdamSinger) post [Be a Disruptor]. It’s an important point especially with the expansion of the Web. I believe the hunting industry is in the very early stage of expanding on the Web.

So…

Now is your chance to be a disruptor in the hunting industry and separate yourself from the status quo.

Yellow Crayon with Blue Crayons

image credit: John-Morgan

The key to Adam’s article is you should be looking for mistakes.

As a hunting business owner, you should be looking for people and companies making mistakes in the hunting industry.

Not only should you recognize mistakes, you should work to find solutions and innovations to improve the status quo.

Past example

The Whisker Biscuit – this innovation in the bow hunting work disrupted the status quo. Arrow rests were pretty basic up to the point right before the Whisker Biscuit hit the market.

But once hunters saw the pictures they realized this was a ‘positive disruption’ (see Adam’s Comment 05) in the hunting industry.

There was a problem with bow hunting (especially stalk bow hunters), the arrows had a tendency to fall off the rest. It was a simple problem, but for whatever reason hunters ignored it until the fine people at Whisker Biscuit decided to disrupt the industry.

Hunters didn’t know what they actually wanted; Whisker Biscuit’s creators did.

This is true innovation and bravery.

I’m sure there are more examples that happen every day within hunting companies. There are a lot of bad ideas that float around corporations; big and small.

Those who stand up and voice their disapproval for bad ideas are the ones who become leaders in the industry.

Possible ways to disrupt…

A few trends I’m seeing as hunters become more Web savvy and more competition for vie for their attention include:

Hunting Networks

Recently there has been a significant increase in the number of hunting Websites offering users their own profiles, photo galleries, forums, etc. – basically what is now the old social utility model based on ad revenue.

I’m seeing this model as dead in its current form.

In order for these Websites to succeed in disrupting the industry (and I do think it’s possible for some) they’ll have to create unique content. Each will have to work to grab territory.

I think the Web is moving past the initial craze of social utilities as people look for more in depth participation.

I was part of this trend with Hunter Share. After realizing it I decided to focus the direction more in an effort to further enhance participation and deepen the connections taking place in a more defined territory – hunting photos.

Monetizing

Sites will also have to have the ability to monetize.

I don’t think the model of traffic and advertising revenue is viable for much longer. That was a model of the earlier Web.

As the Web grows out of its infancy, I believe Website owners and hunting businesses will still have to offer content that customers are willing to pay for; something they see as valuable.

This content could be a product (arrow rests, blog content, video) or service (outfitting, retail).

To succeed you need three things:

1) An audience or potential audience

2) A marketing plan

3) Quality content

Find your territorial audience in the hunting industry, figure out a way to reach that audience, and then figure out what they want and create the content (product or service) to satisfy their need.

Secrecy

I notice a large amount of secrecy among companies. The Web has shown us that individuals and companies willing to share their experiences are successful at connecting with their audiences.

Companies that maintain secrecy and disconnect are the companies that die slowly as their out-of-date tactics run their natural course.

To succeed on the Web you have to be willing to give up your ‘artificial barriers’ and show a willingness to connect with your audience in a more meaningful way.

I think the time is perfect for a hunting business to create this type of connection with hunters.

Summary

There are many ways to disrupt the hunting industry; many I can’t think of at this moment. You just have to keep your eyes and ears keen to what’s happening. Follow your instinct if you feel something in the industry is heading in the wrong direction.

Do you have any ideas for ways to disrupt the hunting industry?

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Dayne Shuda

I'm a blogger and hunting enthusiast. Follow me on Twitter.