New Products Keep Old Companies Relevant

by Chris McCotter

  Capitalizing on product reputation or staying relevant, fishing companies are expanding product lines. 

Garmin introduced forward-facing sonar. While other major players played catch up, Garmin raised the bar without requiring anglers to completely upgrade systems. New and improved LiveScope is available with a new transducer and free software updates. This is very rare in the electronics business as major improvements usually require replacing entire systems at great expense. The new LVS-34 transducer upgrade allows most users to keep their existing screens and enjoy improved screen clarity, transducer sensitivity and target separation. Garmin is setting another bar with how upgrades are sold to users. 

  Dominating a product category combined with quality service, Power-Pole Shallow Water Anchors own the market, with the fishing industry’s best customer service. In a crowded trolling motor field, Power-Pole isn’t doing it on price, instead boaters with high standards will be on board. A decade of research and development has produced Power-Pole’s MOVE ZR Trolling Motor Black, a powerful and quiet brushless trolling motor, built for durability and performance with service to back it up. Enduring full contact fishing, an unbreakable aerospace-grade titanium shaft includes a lifetime warranty. Power-Pole’s custom-built steering motor is nearly silent while producing over 30% more thrust and efficiency than others. MOVE is up to 35% lighter, easier to lift. Power-Pole’s website shows a dream list of features. 3 year warranty on all components.

   When you develop and own a category, there’s a built-in customer base. Z-Man’s Original ChatterBait has company. It’s another original category creator, billed as a ‘self-walking’ topwater lure.  Z-Man’s five-inch HellraiZer disturbs water and fish, doing the work of several topwater lures, splashing, sputtering, and making noise. It casts a mile and effortlessly planes as soon as it hits the water.  Straight retrieves create a crazed fleeing action at any speed. ChatterBait inventor Ron Davis designed the HellraiZer with a weighted tail blade to accentuate swimming motion with a thin body, a belly line tie and a single treble hook for better hook ups. Z-Man’s new HellraiZer presents a new topwater category. 

   If you can’t beat them, invite them to be a part of your success. Not long ago, BassCat/Mercury Elite Series pro angler John Crews launched his line of pro-tested made in the USA soft plastics. Crews has seen a very large market being created by small, large swimbait makers that don’t really have a marketplace for their unique and handmade lures. Crews says Missile Baits usually stays in their soft plastics and jigs lane. However, now they’re going to sell small guy swim baits on the Missile Baits website. Shortly other sellers, too small to supply Missile with a monthly allotment, will rotate through as supplies are available. Crews says, “We are doing it to help these smaller guys out and create something fun to drive traffic to our site.”        

   With conglomerates controlling the fishing industry, smaller companies aren’t waiting to be gobbled up. Instead, they are doing the gobbling. 

Author Capt. Steve Chaconas is Potomac bass fishing guide & freelance writer. Potomac River reports: YouTube video channel NationalBassGuide

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