Reflecting back on this year’s SHOT Show, I have mixed reviews. For one, the absence of many non-essential people made it much easier to maneuver the aisles on the way to meetings and avoided the 5 minute scramble of someone trying to find the person we were scheduled to see. Coming off two record years for our industry, attitudes were very positive. Our vendor partners are still hesitant to offer any special programs as there are still pockets of strong demand. However, we are starting to see the inevitable slowdown and the accompanying overstocks. Despite our best efforts, it’s impossible to perfectly predict when to shut orders down while still capitalizing on sales opportunities. That’s why vendor communication is critical and a unified voice from NASGW members is needed. So now we press forward and get creative again in our business strategies, something we tend to ignore when demand draws inventory down and customers are eager to prepay to get more.
Speaking of SHOT Show, there was an announcement from NASGW that may have gotten lost with everything else going on. On Tuesday, NASGW announced a partnership with Coreware to add 300+ additional retailers to the quickly growing list of dealers feeding data to SCOPE CLX. Once these new store data feeds are fully up and running, SCOPE CLX will be pushing 600 retail feeds. The addition of Coreware is enormous for the SCOPE program and will, in turn, help SCOPE users get a more accurate picture of consumer demand across the country. The SCOPE platform continues to gain momentum as data becomes crucial to business success. If you haven’t touched base with Easton Kuboushek on the most recent developments in the SCOPE program, schedule some time to chat, it will be worth it.
With all that has gone on in the last two years, what have we learned from this latest hypermarket cycle and how does that guide our decisions going forward? We are still working through a “covid” economy that is getting better, but still posing challenges in supply chain and workforce. The battle against an anti-gun regime in the White House will continue to challenge our efforts, patience and wallets. Leadership in the industry is going to be crucial. We need organizations like the ASA, NRA, NSSF, NASGW, and others to advocate on our behalf, bring the industry together, and promote responsible firearms ownership. And we always eagerly welcome new, young leaders from our distributor members! Time will tell where 2022 takes us, but there are challenges ahead.
For now, I hope your staff can stay healthy and avoid any significant disruptions. I hope your sales teams see some consistency in demand, and I hope you all are planning for whatever 2022 may bring.
All the best,