With hundreds of bows on the market, some customers struggle to find the best fit for them. Understanding your customers and how to market each type of bow helps boost sales and customer satisfaction.

We asked three marketing specialists for their best tips for selling traditional bows, compound bows and crossbows. Let’s meet your experts:

- Traditional bows: Jeremy Eldredge, marketing manager, Hoyt Archery Inc.
- Compound bows: Alec Wyman, marketing manager, Bear Archery
- Crossbows: Brian Flaherty, marketing manager, TenPoint Crossbow Technologies

All three experts emphasize knowing everything possible about your customers and bows. Who makes each model, how do they work, where are they manufactured?

“If you understand what a customer needs and is looking for, and you know your products well enough to match their needs, you’ll have a better chance of closing the sale,” Eldredge said. “If you’re making stuff up and faking your way through the sales experience, customers will see through you, or you’ll sell them something they didn’t want or need. When they figure that out later, they’ll never come back."

Show customers their options, but too many options might confuse them. You want them to enjoy the sales experience and feel productive. Be genuine when marketing your products. If you’re confident and knowledgeable, your customers will trust your expertise, which can trigger more sales and future interactions.

How to Market Traditional Bows

Typical Buyers:

- Hunters who find compound bows boring or too easy and want something different.
- Hunters who are “diehard traditional” and love the “stick-bow” challenge.
- Hunters fascinated by the history and romance of traditional bows.

Traditional bows require lots of practice to shoot consistently. That might put off new archers, but many longtime archers enjoy the challenge of traditional bows.

Best Features: Eldredge considers traditional bows pure and simple compared to other bows. They don’t necessarily require a sight, stabilizer or arrow rest. Therefore, they don’t need much maintenance, except for the bowstring. That makes traditional bows hardy and reliable.

Marketing Tip: Keep a traditional bow on hand for customers to try. Eldredge said “trad bows” aren’t as common as compounds, so few customers have tried shooting one. That means people don’t know what they’re missing. Eldredge said most people who try shooting a traditional bow enjoy the challenge and get hooked. Encourage customers to test drive different bows. It lets them experience different features and helps them discover what they like most. Be sure to show customers their options. They can shoot a basic wooden bow, or a modern metal-riser bow with an elevated rest and carbon limbs. Remind customers they can get as involved in archery’s technical side as they want.

Another Consideration: Unlike compound bows, the traditional bow’s entire draw weight must be pulled and held throughout the shot process. Discuss these bows’ strength and stamina requirements with customers, and stock bows of multiple lengths and low draw weights. A variety helps beginners choose the right bow and develop good form and avoid bad habits while learning to draw, hold and shoot.

Continue Reading the Full Article at Archery Trade Association - written by: Cassie Gasaway