NEW PROGRAMS BOOST
VALUE OF ’07 ATA TRADE SHOW Strong
attendance bolsters launch of Real Deal, Great Giveaway and company-led
ATLANTA ? The archery industry’s business year jumped out to
a fast start Jan. 18-20 as nearly 2,600 archery dealers, buyers and distributors
attended the 2007 ATA Trade Show to take advantage of new programs and
unprecedented deals on the near-record show floor at the Georgia World Congress
“Our overall attendance might not have set records, but the
sentiment I kept hearing was that this show was all about attitude, excitement
and commitment to strengthening the industry’s core members,” said Jay McAninch,
ATA’s CEO and president. “The ATA Board of Directors and ATA staff created a
great slate of programs, and we couldn’t be happier with the response. This show
proved that success doesn’t mean adding nonendemic exhibitors to fill floor
space or opening the doors to unqualified dealers. It means strengthening the
industry’s heart and soul, and encouraging a buying and selling attitude on the
floor. The more benefits we provide ATA members, the more we increase loyalty to
the show, our sports and our organization.”
Even so, the show’s numbers were solid, said Denise Parker,
director of the ATA Trade Show. This month’s show drew 2,582 registered dealers,
buyers and distributors, only 58 fewer than the 2006 Atlanta show. In addition,
ATA registered 3,939 exhibitor staff, down from 4,476 from a year ago, but up 30
overall from 2005. The show also attracted 325 media members.
In addition, Atlanta now holds two of the top three spots
for rented booth space in ATA Show history. Exhibitors at this month’s show
rented 145,100 square feet of booth space (316.1 square feet per exhibitor),
compared to 155,500 square feet in 2006 (311.6) and 145,400 in 2005 (304.2) at
“This show demonstrated the importance of adding value
across the board so dealers have more reasons than ever to attend,” Parker said.
“We launched three new, exciting show programs: the Real Deal, ATA Great
Giveaway and company-led technical training at the morning seminars.
“More than ever before, the ATA Trade Show offered great
business deals in a fun, exciting atmosphere,” Parker continued. “Judging by the
success of that lineup, we’re looking forward to taking these programs to
Indianapolis in 2008. With the experience we gained in Atlanta, and even more
fine-tuning this year, these programs will be even more popular when we’re
within driving distance of our core dealer base.”
The programs received praise from all corners of the 2007
ATA Trade Show. The Real Deal allowed exhibitors to display their show specials
in a secure showroom, where dealers quick-shopped the savings before hitting the
floor. Exhibitors and dealers alike praised the program.
“This was our most productive show ever,” said ATA board
member Paul Vaicunas, vice president of sales for Horton Manufacturing. “We put
our Hunter Elite into the Real Deal, and it drove a lot of traffic to our booth.
They came here looking for that deal.”
“There were definitely some great deals in there that we
checked out on the floor,” said Glenn Ryman of Ted’s Sports Shop in Dexter, Mo.
“We went in there first thing to see where to go for the best deals, whether it
was a new release, sight, camo suit or whatever.”
The ATA Great Giveaway attracted a near-capacity crowd the
evening of Jan. 19 when more than $500,000 in cash, merchandise, guided hunts
and other special prizes ? 103 in all ? were raffled off in less than two hours.
The prizes included two $5,000 checks, one $10,000 check, and the grand prize, a
2007 custom camo truck. Terry Thomas of Athens, Illinois, a manufacturers rep
with Hudalla Associates, was the truck’s lucky winner.
The 2007 ATA/Archery Business “Archery University” seminar
series expanded its offerings of bow-tuning and technical sessions, while
including its time-tested seminars on shooting tips and business advice. The
revamped format attracted a record 932 people, a 17 percent increase from 2006,
and 2.6 percent higher than the previous record of 908 in 2004 at Indianapolis.
Attendees found great value in these early-morning classes.
“Our shop knows the importance of providing fast, reliable,
up-to-date service,” said Gary Nostrant, director of sales and repairs at
Country Woods Archery in St. Johns, Mich. “We also had a guy at the shooting
seminars so he can better help our customers solve their shooting problems. The
bottom line is that the seminars improved our customer service.”
Parker said the ATA expects these programs to grow in the
years ahead. “The first year of any new program is usually spent getting
people’s attention and learning to make it work,” Parker said. “The 2007 ATA
Show proved these programs are not only viable, they’re wildly popular. The ATA
Board of Directors and our staff hit several home runs, and next year’s show
should be even stronger, especially once we’re back in the middle of our core