The Growth of Fishing Tackle

There is a lot of choice in today’s fishing tackle market with many companies offering similar products for the same purpose. Many of these have been born out of frustration with other companies’ products design flaws; although many of them work well, anglers always have there own opinions on how things should be. The end result is that different companies design the same products to act slightly differently. Thankfully for the average angler this gives us plenty of choice to make our own mind up on which one we like best.

One of the best things about fishing tackle is that I do not know of 2 people who fish exactly the same setup or in exactly the same way, we all do something different in hope to gain that edge over everyone else on the complex they are fishing.

There are several tackle companies that compete for our business in the fishing tackle market, in particular you have Korda, ESP, Fox, JRC, Rig Marole and to be fair many more that would take to long to list. I want to look mainly at the range of stuff developed by the guys at Korda and ESP

Korda have been instrumental in the growth of Carp Fishing over the course of the last few years, the advertising that they put behind their products and the effort that goes into testing their products is second to none in my own opinion, I was chatting to Damo and Danny at a recent trade show looking at the new products that they have just released and I was totally impressed by the passion that these guys have. They will literally take a part of their angling that they feel isn’t optimum and design a product that will meet their needs. Unlike many other markets where a manufacturer will create a product to meet demand, Korda create a product to produce demand. The fishing tackle that they produce is a neat range of equipment that all fits together well and works as it should.

The main competitors to Korda are ESP (Drennan) who with names like Terry Hearn behind them also command a large percentage of the fishing tackle market. Terry is obviously well known in our little circle of the carping fraternity. Whenever I read stuff from Terry I never fail to be impressed at the effort that he puts into his angling and has without doubt a very impressive collection of photo’s to back up his knowledge. ESP products have a very good reputation among the hardcore anglers as being the best on the market, many of us believing things like intermediate sized hooks can make all the difference when neutrally balancing cork pop ups, or when using leadcore making sure it is ESP as it is classed as the best on the market.

With these two companies directly competing for our business the consumer is spoilt for choice when it comes to nicks and nacks for our fishing pleasure. Many of you will already sit in a particular camp where you feel happier with one companies products, but to those of you who are hardcore fans of one or the other, be aware that developments are constantly changing the face of fishing tackle and I would strongly recommend a trip to your local tackle shop to check out what the other is up to! You may be pleasantly surprised.

Another company that I have been impressed by, mainly for thinking outside the box, is Rig Marole. These guys seem to have been quite underrated in the fishing tackle trade as far as the general public seem concerned. I personally have been fishing with their new fluorocarbon over the last month or so and I have not been as impressed with a hooklink for several years, time after time I have seen fish fought successfully through pads, weed, snaggy areas and at long and short distance without a single failure. The bit that I love the most about the hooklink is the ability to straighten the kinks out without damaging it! Very impressive and a big thumbs up to the CamH20. Another one of the products that I have been impressed with, well two in fact is the rig tubing and hydrolink. Hydrolink has put a nice spin on the traditional coated braid that we have been accustomed to over the last few years, hydrolink reverses the process and has the braid on the outer and a strippable inner, this has proved a real hit with fans of hinged stiff rigs. The tubing, although a touch expensive, is also a very good idea, when leadcore simply isn’t an option you need to fish with a tubing that serves the purpose of fish safety but also hugs the bottom much much better than standard rig tubing. This is due to a tungsten inner that weighs more than leadcore helping keep the tubing tight to the bottom reducing the chance of spooking feeding fish. Oh and I forgot to mention its ridiculously easy to thread!

Test Tube Twitter – Should You Experiment?

For the past three semesters I persuaded, coaxed and begged some 50 digital marketing students to start using Twitter – just do it! About 10% made an earnest attempt and remarked that they were really getting the swing of it. Then the course ended, and poof! they disappeared into Ethernet air.

Twitter is the micro-blogging, social media-hyped, information superhighway broadcast tool that is now used by a measly 1.45% of the Canadian Internet population (some 350,000 people). In contrast, 19% of Americans tweet representing about 55% (19 million) of the 45 million worldwide users.

Believe it or not, 72% of users joined in the first five months of 2009. And the majority of broadcast posts (90% of all tweets) were from a small 10% minority of prolific users, while just 1% use Twitter more than once a week. Twitter quitters are the more than 60% of U.S. users who fail to return the following month after signing up.

Twitter remains in its infancy of adoption in Canada, with its usage both sporadic and concentrated among a small group of active, enthusiastic users. It seems that the digital marketing students were representing well – for better or for worse.

Experiments and Results

None of these statistics though necessarily detract from those businesses and individuals who are thriving while experimenting with the Twitterati. Companies touted as having made the best use of Twitter include some major brands like @DellOutlet, who attributes US$3 million dollars in converted sales through their Twitter account. Others include @ComcastCares, @VirginAmerica, @JetBlue and @Zappos.

Small business successes include a Korean BBQ taco truck that drives around Los Angeles, California serving hungry followers through @KogiBBQ – they tweet locations and times where the truck is parked. Even an exceptionally creative home-based cake decorator from Mississauga, Ontario @CakeorDeathCA has grown her custom cake business to be a supplier of some 300 “pill box fashioned” cakelets for last month’s LG Fashion Week in Toronto.

These companies have chosen to use (erm, test) Twitter – early adopters experimenting with the broadcast site without the benefit of best practices or measured success to guide them. For this reason alone, they deserve our attention so that we too can learn when and how to add this emerging social media tool to the marketing mix.

Three Main Ingredients

If your company is evaluating conducting a Twitter experiment, here are some essential ingredients to be mixed in the beaker: strategy, content and resources. Taking a closer look at each will help you gauge your readiness and probability of success:

Strategy

One is advised to take direction from Jeremiah Owyang, a Forrester Research Analyst, when he wrote, “Successful social media marketing is 80% strategy and 20% technology.” When considering whether or not to Tweet, step back and define the business objectives by answering the following questions:

  • What are you hoping to achieve?
  • What measurable business results do you want?
  • Who is the intended audience? are they on Twitter?
  • How will you measure success?
  • Do you have, or can you acquire the necessary resources?

Companies have found many varied objectives where Twitter is having effect, while other business use cases are emerging: whether for media relations, customer service, sales, marketing communications broadcast, recruitment or driving traffic to a website, blog, webinar, promotion, event or retail location. In addition, individuals and professionals find Twitter to be a gem of a networking tool.

Content

The category of micro-blogging that Twitter has been labeled with is ambiguous – I suppose the company was compelled to create a new category, but this does not describe its core capability. Rather, it is a live (real-time) communication broadcast tool, not unlike E-mail, Instant Messaging, Telegrams or Radio broadcast systems – mashed up and online 24/7/365.

Twitter allows you to broadcast up to 140 characters at a time, as many times as you want, either to everyone (and anybody) or to one person or selected people. You can also send direct messages (akin to chat) to any one person. The micro-blogging tools live nature is dependent on followers being signed in and attentive/alert to posts as they are sent. As a consequence, the more frequently that you post on Twitter, and the more content that is posted, the more chance of your intended audience actually reading and responding to the posts. In contrast, if your followers are offline when tweets are sent, they will most likely never read them – this is the real-time nature of Twitter.

Content frequency and relevancy to your audience is key to success. Net, you need a content plan in order to make a dent in achieving your defined business objectives. And content is not easy, it entails a lot of consistent, continual effort to research, create and manage.

For this reason, it is well suited to businesses that have rich content and high frequency communications with stakeholders – whether employees, customers, suppliers, investors, media or partners. It is not coincidental that social media smart brands, those with an existing blogging strategy, information and media companies and those with frequent updates are embracing Twitter. If your business is one of those, then Twitter may be an effective broadcast channel worth experimenting with.

Resources

Despite Twitter being a free Web tool that is overly simple to use, there is no “free lunch” since its going concern operation is dependent on adequate, perhaps dedicated resources. Depending on your strategy and expected results resources may also need to collaborate across business functions. For example, representatives from corporate communications, customer service, marketing and sales, to name a few, may need to provide input and content. And that requires a communication plan and governance model to guide cross-functional efforts.

Even with first phase initiatives some amount of resource – whether internal or external – will need to be allocated to plan and post content, as well as conduct regular monitoring and measurement. Staffing skills, traits and pre-requisite experience are likely to include a mix of excellent communications skills, digital technical competency, and marketing and business acumen – not to mention project management.

Lowest Barrier to Entry

If these strategy, content and resource issues are intimidating there is one least common denominator use, and that is monitoring. Even if your company balks at Twitter or chooses a more prudent, risk averse approach you can start using it right now to monitor and listen to what customers, media and competitors are saying online about your company. You do not even have to open an account or engage directly in the conversations in order to benefit from gleamed brand, market and competitive insights.

All you have to do is Search to find what may turn out to be actionable information you can use to improve customer service, product development, corporate communications or competitive intelligence. And while you are actively learning by monitoring and listening online you may eventually be inspired to add Twitter to your marketing mix.

Best Summer Spots for South African Dating

South African Dating can begin online or through a chance encounter with someone who catches your eye. And, with the rise in popularity of South African online dating sites you are much more likely to hook up with someone on the internet before you ever meet them in person. However, once it’s time to meet that person face to face, it’s a good idea to meet in a public place. Partially for safety reasons, but also to break the ice in an atmosphere that will allow both of you to relax. Here are some of the best hot spots to hook up with someone in South Africa:

The Drum Café: Before you begin any banging of flesh, why not venture into this club and rent a djembe drum. Music is always a great way to relax and the primitive, rhythmic pounding rising up from a group of people banging on the drums is certain to inspire another type of rhythm later in the night.

Mama Africa: If you would love to mix up some cool jazz with ancient African rhythms then this place is worth considering. With a local band, you can enjoy the great food on your South African date. If you go too early you may find there aren’t too many people. But as the night heats up, so does the action.

Storms River: If adventure is more your style and you want to pump up your testosterone then head out to this extreme sports capital. A great connection can be made through South African dating and working up a sweat. Don’t underestimate the sexual power resulting from bungee jumping, mountain biking, or tubing. Remember, dating is supposed to be fun and it doesn’t matter if it started on line with some serious sexual chatting or not.

Montecasino Fanzone: If there is a game in town, consider watching it in this South African venue. You will be surrounding by people that enjoy sports and can have fun as a group watching your favorite teams battle it out on the field.

Whether you go for some music or some sport, hooking up with your online dating friend can start in public and end in private. It has been said that it doesn’t matter where you work up your appetite as long as at the end of the day you find a pleasing body to share a meal… especially if that meal ends up being eaten off of their naked body! To really indulge is what South African Dating has to offer, why not combine some great local spots with some great local sex. What could be better?