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Shooting Industry June 2011 Digital Edition - Page 30

The Nikon M-223 Laser IRT (Immediate Ranging Technology) 2.5-10x40 riflescope features a laser rangefinder and BDC (Bullet Drop Compensating) reticle, ideal for long-range shooting. Visit The good news, Mundy says, is retailers are taking advantage of their resources to educate themselves, and there are plenty of resources out there. “In the old days, it was a catalog and a call from the sales rep,” Mundy said. “Now it’s the catalog, the call from the sales rep, the ability to get onto the website, and the ability to take advantage of training. For example, we offer online training. There are many opportunities for retailers and their counter help to get educated quickly.” Many optics companies offer some kind of training for dealers to help them keep up with the changes in today’s optics. Bushnell has a “Tech Talk” option under every product category on its website where retailers (and consumers) can find a smorgasbord of technical information. Alpen Optics does in-store training for its larger accounts, and has a good deal of technical information on its website. Even though education is crucial to selling today’s optics, it isn’t everything. “Merchandising still is very important,” Mundy said. “Another very big deal is being able to relate to the customer. If I walk into a store, it pleases me if I can talk to someone who really knows his stuff and can relate to what I’m trying to do with a product. There’s a use-based experiential component that comes into play. A dealer who spends most of the time selling football helmets and five minutes Burris is offering numerous rebates to promote its Fullfield II a day selling riflescopes Value Packages. The promotion runs through June 30. is going to have a harder Hands-On Knowledge time selling optics than a retailer who ‘lives it.’ I think a lot of stores recognize that, and that’s why there’s such an increase in pro staffers and guys who spend a lot of time in the field. They can talk about the product, not only from an academic standpoint, but also from a hands-on standpoint.” Once you’ve educated yourself, Mundy says, put your optics products front and center where customers can’t miss them. “Many times if products are languishing, it’s because customers don’t know about them,” he said. “There’s been such a proliferation of good products that often it’s hard to differentiate them. Whether you do that with signage, special training, a special program or another way, thinking a little outside the box is important.” Mundy suggests packaging two products, such as a firearm and a scope, together. “That makes people aware of what a particular product can do for their type of hunting or shooting,” he said. “For example, we think our VX-R will be very popular in the Southeast, where hunters are more likely to be in stands and to take advantage of dawn and dusk conditions.” In the West, however, the emphasis is more on distance shooting. “There might be more interest in the Western states in a long-range riflescope with a custom dial system,” Mundy said. “It’s about making customers aware that you have a product that can make their kind of shooting easier than it was before. Often, that convinces someone to buy a more expensive product when it’s suitable for what they need.” 9 Understanding Optic Terms • Electro-optical: Optics with electrical enhancements. These may be laser rangefinders, illuminated reticles or other electrical “add-ons” to more conventional optics. • Mil-dot: The mil-dot reticle is used for estimating distance. It’s been around since the 1970s, and has become popular in hunting and shooting in recent years. The space between the centers of two adjacent dots is one milliradian, or mil-radian. • Mil-radian: The mil-radian is a unit of measure used by the military for long-range shooting. It is equal to 3.4377 MOA (minute of angle). One mil is 3.6" at 100 yards, or 30" at 1,000 yards. • Minute of Angle: MOA is, approximately, 1" at 100 yards. If you want to be precise, it’s 1.0471996". 30 JUNE 2011 Read SI DIGITAL

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