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Author Topic: Startup Idea, Need Help  (Read 2158 times)


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Startup Idea, Need Help
« on: February 16, 2014, 12:34:00 PM »
Hello everyone, I Just discovered the forum and wow there is a ton of awesome information here!  Because there is so many good folks on this site that travel all over the place I wanted get your opinion on an idea that I have been kicking around for some time.  It is a potential business selling area, region, or river specific assortments of trout flies for fly-fishing.  Fly-fishing is so many things at once; it is relaxing, a bonding experience, brings us in touch with nature, and can also be frustrating at times. The product I propose would alleviate at least some of the headache of fishing on a trip.  You could save time and energy by knowing that you already have enough of the right flies and basic tips and techniques so that when you show up stream side in Montana you can start catching fish instead of guessing on what to use or looking for a fly shop.  Since a good number of us like to fish on our road trips I thought the RV community would be a good market for my product. I could really use your help in understanding if this is a good idea or not.

Background: I have been fly fishing most of my life. Over the last 5 years I started to study what bugs the fish were actually eating and the patterns that replicated them.  About that same time I moved to Gunnison, CO and there is a ton of great fishing in the area.  It still took me a long time to understand what patterns were most successful and what rigs to use.  It would have been easier to hire a guide for a day and just pick his brain but being of independent spirit I took the long approach and just talked to other fisherman.  It also took a while (even with the help of a local guide book) to figure out where to fish. I started to wonder; what if there was a better way for people new to an area, traveling, or new to fly fishing to figure out the most successful fishing flies, techniques, and places.

The Idea:  The idea is simple.  We offer area, region, or river specific fly assortments with how to booklet on best rigs, techniques, and spots to start fishing.  The question is do you think there are people interested in such a product for their next summer road trip? I really want to talk/ as questions to some real people that have traveled around the country and like to fish.

Questions like:
Would you be interested in buying the right flies that are proven to work in say Yellowstone before you leave on the trip?

Have ever found yourself in a situation where you want to go fly-fishing but donít know what to use or even where the nearest store is to buy the flies? If so where were you traveling at the time?

Is it worth it to plan ahead and order the right flies so that when you get to your destination you can start fishing right away?

Bottom line will I be wasting my time pursuing this idea? Thanks for taking the time to read this and any feedback you can give would be very helpful.


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Re: Startup Idea, Need Help
« Reply #1 on: February 16, 2014, 01:54:51 PM »
The easiest thing in the world is thinking up a great idea that will make you a ton of money. The hardest thing in the world is implementing the idea, specifically marketing the idea. You might pick up a few sales from this web site but certainly not enough to sustain a business. So don't waste your time explaining your great idea, explain how you plan on marketing it.
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Re: Startup Idea, Need Help
« Reply #2 on: February 16, 2014, 02:31:44 PM »
You have some hurdles to overcome to make this a viable business.
The potential questions you posted are easily answered on the web for free.
Noobs will hire a guide. Experienced fly fishermen will do their research. Fishemen talk.. a lot... on the web about what's working.
To successfully market this idea, you will need to position yourself as completely different from the vast number of free resources out there.
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Re: Startup Idea, Need Help
« Reply #3 on: February 16, 2014, 02:53:36 PM »
I agree with Bob.  A great solution to a non-problem, and a very steep uphill climb to prove your products worth.  What works today, on any water, probably won't work tomorrow.  The words a fisherman hears most often are "you should have been here yesterday".
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Re: Startup Idea, Need Help
« Reply #4 on: February 16, 2014, 02:56:10 PM »
I know you were simply tossing ut an example, but living here in Yellowstone, you can't backcast without snagging a fly shop.  They all have boards with river conditions and what is working.  Now, this place is a hotbed, and all areas may not be like this.  I see fly fishermen as always looking for something new, so possiby it could work.  Plus folks on the web may not realize how many shops and guides are available in the place they are going.  Then again, if the area is good, you will have a pretty good chance of many shops to service with the flies that worked yesterday and this morning. 
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    • Capt Jim Lucas
Re: Startup Idea, Need Help
« Reply #5 on: February 16, 2014, 10:21:02 PM »
As a professional fishing guide for the past 30 years or so...generally the problem is not the fly or plug or bait, but the presentation and you can tout your flies as being the best on any given river, lake or stream, you may be able to prove they are successful, but in the hands of a weekend warrior the odds decrease significantly...and what about location, location, location...I have had clients standing right next to me with no ability to spot the crease or shadow in the water where the fish are laying...knowing where and how to present the fly is the key, generally if they are feeding they will bite what washes by...I have caught fish on a spoon I made from a budweiser can...I have caught trout and steelhead on bonefish flies in a shrimp pattern in fresh water....put it where they are hungry and they bite, it ain't rocket science.

Plus - who cares if the fly works or not - the enjoyment is fishing and the outdoors...catching is a bonus!

You would need experts on virtually every body of water in the US to effectively market your product and you would have an inventory in the millions, right along with the millions of opinions of what works....

Hire a guide for the day and then enjoy your vacation...

Good Luck,

Full time traveler, fishing guide and photographer!

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Re: Startup Idea, Need Help
« Reply #6 on: May 13, 2014, 08:13:44 PM »
It has potential. But as WigPro mentioned and as you know it's all about presentation.

I run a custom rod building company building rods for fly fisherman to tuna fisherman across the country. The hardest part is building your initial customer base and having them refer their Freinds. I started sponsoring a few guides and folks around the country but it really hasn't changed my order volume. I am plenty busy (all orders are about 3 weeks out) but I always wish I have a tad more. We are going to be exhibiting at the Miami fishing expo this year so trying to fill orders and build inventory can be tough. Keep an eye on advertising costs and freebies; these two add up quick.

The same applies to flies. Your first couple years will be building your reputation & customer base. You will probably pour more money in then you will make.

I might be an anomaly but when I visit an area I don't know I find a guide for a day or two. But I know there are a lot of people plan trips to locations in CO & MT and bring gear. So if you target the self sufficient tourist market I think you can make it happen.
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