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Shooting Industry February 2011 - Page 28
SELF-DEFENSE TODAY Sell Smarter To Earn Your Share Of Shrinking Discretionary Budgets SELLING By Massad Ayoob W hen the economy is down, many of your customers cut back. Vacations turn into “staycations,” the new car gets postponed, clothes get mended instead of replaced — and your firearm customers Sell Versatility! decide to “make do with what they’ve got” until things become more prosperous. That’s the way it is when discretionary funds get tight. However, you can still make sales in the self-defense/home-defense side of the market. capacity subcompact 9mm has been looking awfully good, but he’s not sure he can justify the expense. With the Springfield package, he has a gun he can legally carry concealed, and he doesn’t have to buy a new holster, because one labeled “XD Gear” comes with the correct holster. With the short concealment magazine, the XD(M) with its 3.8" barrel carries 13+1 rounds of 9mm, almost triple his previous onboard firepower when he’s out and about. But, the package also has a 19-round magazine, sleeved so that when it’s in the gun, the pistol feels like a full-size XD(M) and, with a chambered round, is now up to 20 cartridges ready to fire. That’s a With fewer dollars to spend, customers look more carefully at value. And versatility and value go together like the proverbial soup and sandwich. Consider the perennial home-defense best seller, the Remington 870 slide-action shotgun. Suppose Customer #1 is looking for a short-barreled one as a family protection arm. Shouldering a standard model and gazing down its bead-sighted barrel, he wishes he could justify it, but he thinks it’s “close enough” to the old pump gun he inherited from Uncle Henry, and figures he can do without. Suppose you can hand him the same gun, fitted with ghost ring sights. Yes, it’s a few dollars more, but remind him that it’s also effective during deer season. This will be particularly important in states where shotguns are required for deer hunting. Now, the deal has been sweetened by the prospect of meat in the freezer and hours of recreation. Value in terms of versatility has jumped, because this “feature” can be perceived as two guns in one: a home-protection weapon and a gameharvesting tool that also puts affordable recreation into the picture. Another example: Springfield Armory’s “Two Guns In One” option in their XD(M) pistol series. Let’s say Customer #2 has been meaning to upgrade the fiveshot .38 revolver he bought long ago to protect himself and his family. A higher- 28 FEBRUARY 2011 Read SI DIGITAL www.shootingindustry.com