With strong support of the paddle sports community, Backwater Paddle Company has had its best year so far. We have expanded into many new markets, had a new website designed, increased our brand awareness, introduced the Hi-Vis Orange Assault Hand Paddles, multiplied our social media presence almost four fold, and hooked up with an e-mail design company for better customer contact.
Backwater Paddle Company continued on its strong growth pattern for 2014. Our dealer network has expanded around the country, with 50+ dealers in 21 states. As our hand paddles become more available to the sportsmen, the local paddle shops are taking notice and quickly joining the Backwater Paddle Company family.
As the sport of kayak fishing expands, we continue to sponsor local and regional kayak fishing tournaments. Last year we supported numerous paddle sport tournaments around the nation, gaining mass brand exposure and product awareness. Our Assault Hand Paddles are the “talk on the water” at most of these tournaments!
This year we have been invited to sponsor some of the nations largest, most recognized and competitive kayak fishing tournaments. The “Kayak Fishing Classics” is the nations largest and most prestigious tournament. The “2015 Kayak Bass Series” is about to get underway January 31st, just around the corner. These legendary tournaments provide Backwater Paddle Company with exposure we could not afford otherwise. We are running with the big dogs now!
We had our website professionally re-designed for better flow and updated appearance. The new site looks and feels…”smooth and fresh.” No more boxy photos splattered all over the screen, no more links scattered around the site. The company web store and blog are all integrated with a matching color palette. It was time!!
Marketing is very expensive…just in case you did not know!! We continue to advertise in KAYAK ANGLER magazine, paddling.net, and other smaller forums and digital avenues. Product reviews play a significant part in brand awareness. We have received awesome product reviews by some of the top anglers in the sport this year. Many of these reviews have been posted on previous blogs, earlier this year.
Social media is the biggest part of any companies marketing strategy today. We have over 8600 fans on the Backwater Paddle Company Face Book page…and growing daily. As a matter of fact, we put a small amount of capital in advertising and marketing on Face Book every month. We also have a LinkedIn account, YouTube page, as well as our Pinterest site to see our latest photos.
Having said all that…and this still confounds me…we still have NOT broken into the “big box” stores yet? Bass Pro, Gander Mountain, Academy, Cabelas to name a few, are stubborningly refusing to grant us access to their shelf space. Not sure why…but that nut WILL be cracked!!
Looking forward for 2015…we will introduce another color for the Assault Hand Paddle. We let our customers and fans choose the color via a survey in the spring. Nothing better than letting the customers and fans feel like they are part of the process!!
In product development, our goal is to move forward with the full size kayak paddles…the “Raptor Project.” We still need to do some CAD design and prototyping of the new kayak blade design. As far as securing the necessary capital for the project, around $75K, we are looking at Kickstarter, a crowd funding program.
As the new season approaches, we look forward to our continued growth for 2015.
We most appreciate the support and commitment of all our families, friends, investors, fans and customers. See you on the water for 2015!
Paddle on my friends!!