Story Courtesy of RMEF Blogspot-
To put it simply, a number of Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation staffers find themselves among the masses (64,000 to be accurate) at the largest gathering of the firearms and outdoor industry on earth. It’s the perfect place to solidify RMEF’s relationships with its conservation partners for the present and into the future.
To better understand that, you need to have a feel for the enormity of this event. The 37th go-round of theShooting, Hunting and Outdoor Trade (SHOT) Show runs daily from 8:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. January 20-23 at the Sands Expo Center in Las Vegas. More than 60,000 exhibitors, manufacturers, wholesalers, retailers, buyers, wildlife conservation organizations, media members and other industry professionals from all 50 states and 100 different countries are on hand. (67,000 attended a year ago.) More than 2,400 members of the outdoor and mainstream media cover the show to view and promote the products they see in their print, Internet, radio and TV stories.
The show is for trade only and is not open to the general public. Consumers will see the products unveiled here on retailer’s shelves during the course of the year.
The exhibit floor is massive! Exhibit space totals more than 630,000 net square feet. If you do the math, that’s more than 13 acres or roughly the same area covered by the New Orleans Superdome or the base of the Great Pyramid of Giza. SHOT Show features 12.5 miles of aisles which lead to displays of a wide range of products, including firearms, ammunition, gun safes, locks and cases, optics, shooting range equipment, targets, training and safety equipment, hunting accessories, law enforcement equipment, hearing and eye protection, tree stands, scents and lures, cutlery, GPS systems, holsters, apparel, leather goods, game calls and decoys.
Firearms and ammunition are an $8 billion industry. The total economic impact of the industry is nearly $38 billion, which supports more than 245,000 jobs. The market for firearms, ammunition and accessories remains strong, with statistics showing more people going target shooting and hunting.
RMEF carries out a SHOT Show approach of “divide and conquer.” Sales, marketing, public relations, merchandising and publications personnel hold meetings with sponsors, associates, peers, journalists, outdoor personalities and other key groups and organizations. In this day and age of texting, email, Skyping and other forms of high tech communication, there’s still something to be said for meaningful face-to-face meetings and a good, old fashioned handshake.
SHOT Show is also an opportunity to learn more about marketing and other industry trends, hunting and wildlife-related research, and to rub shoulders with so many folks with like-minded vision. These established ties with conservation-minded partners help RMEF carry out its mission to ensure the future of elk, other wildlife, their habitat and our hunting heritage.
After all, members of the vast world-wide outdoor industry may live a world apart when it comes to distance, but when it comes to creating and maintaining more public access, and conserving our wildlife and wild landscapes, we’re all on the same page.