Re: New Yellowstone Angler 8 Weight Shootout Discussion
I agree with FrankB2.
I personally, do not see a problem at all with creating a buzz. What is wrong with marketing your business and expertise? I don't find many businesses that stay open who fail to execute this in some form. I do not believe Anderson's motives are self serving. I have been critical of a few aspects of previous shootouts because of how technical data was generated, where the rods were tested (grass & gym floor vs water), and the overtly negative tones used in poor product reviews. Having said this, Yellowstone Angler has improved the way they calculate swing weight and has also rationalized how decisions were made in a more direct and tangible manner though his YouTube address and additional content in the review. I thought they did very well this time, given the enormity of the task.
The biggest difference between Yellowstone Angler and other shops that do informative videos is Yellowstone Angler's willingness to discuss what they like and dislike about a rod. This can certainly offend people. It takes clout to offer positive and negative critiques of the manufacturers who let you represent their products. They have a lot of experience behind their views, and it helps to learn about what makes each rod great in the minds of those who have rated each rod. If a small business can bring attention to itself in this manner, then what is the problem with that?
I do not necessarily believe that the shootout is tainted towards one manufacturer or another. Winston and Hardy scored very well in the 5 weight shootout, but scored poorly in the 8 weight shootout. I also own Winston BIIX rods, and love them. I wouldn't put a GPX on them like they did in a previous shootout, nor did it inhibit me from making my purchases. At the end of the day, I did exactly what George Anderson said to do in his YouTube video. I took what he said into consideration, and visited my local fly shop. I tested the rods with different lines and made my own decision based on what worked best for my situation. I'd have to visit at least three or four fly shops to view three quarters of the rods listed in the shootout.
As far as generating "cheap advertising"...... Find me business owners who want to consistently pay for "expensive advertising". Marketing changes as people’s needs and wants change. Knowing how consumers search out the products and services that are desired is important to the success of any business or corporation. Any small business owner would be remiss if they failed to use inexpensive media outlets such as blogs and other social media platforms to generate additional business without having to pay a marketing firm to come in and tell them they should have done internet based marketing. This whole forum is based off of discussing topics like this. If The Yellowstone Angler didn't conduct this shootout, we would still be talking about who likes the Loomis NRX or Sage Xi3, or why offshore rods are better or worse than domestically made rods.
I have said before that it takes a lot of time and effort to conduct these shootouts. Many on this forum have offered advice on how to improve certain aspects of the shootout, and I believe that Yellowstone Angler has improved their approach and rating system with each shootout release. Anderson's experience speaks for itself and the shop was smart to conduct a candid review such as this. Anglers can debate the results like others can debate politics. That is what makes it interesting, and that is what creates a forum topic. I would rather read this than some of the "everything is great" reviews in other publications. Ultimately, only 1 shop has taken the time to do a review like this. Individuals, including myself, who offer criticism and praise must do so with the realization that it is a pretty large task to make everyone happy while attempting to provide unbiased reviews. Maybe it is an impossible task, but is there anyone else out there who has done better?