Bowie Outfitters - Baton Rouge, La., and Natchez, Miss.
Number of employees: 30 (across two locations, including part-time employees)
Quote: “We are Bowie Outfitters, everything outdoors!”
In 2002, Bowie Outfitters was opened by its two owners who love duck hunting, but who were unable to find good hunting clothes and accessories. Bowie Outfitters carries a range of supplies for hunting, fishing, archery, camping, and other outdoor specialty gear.
It’s been challenging to attract and acquire new customers. Bowie Outfitters differentiates itself by creating unique events and evaluates their success in order to keep the positive initiatives and drop the ineffective ones.
Successful marketing and promotions:
Bowie Outfitters engages in a variety of marketing activities, including social media, flyers, events, and newsletters. Bowie Outfitters creates promotional and event flyers to share via company website, social media, and newsletter. The company also sells its products via third-party websites or marketplaces.
Events are designed to be beneficial for avid outdoor individuals as well as everyday consumers looking to experience Louisiana. Selected events include:
- Annual “Banded” Just Go Tour party with games, giveaways, food, drink and music.
- Ladies Night Out with a catered party, free gift wrapping, refreshments, raffles, giveaways, sales, and drawing for purchase discounts. The tradition has continued for six years, and participant list continues to grow.
- Local cookbook signing that partners with local cook book authors to host signing events at Bowie Outfitters stores. It has successfully attracted new customers who love cooking and the outdoors.
- Bowie’s Indoor Archery League gathers every Thursday over six weeks with nightly prize shots. The number of participants has been increasing every year.
What differentiates Bowie Outfitters?:
Excellent customer service, knowledgeable employees, and competitive pricing set Bowie Outfitters apart from the competition.
- Customer Service - Bowie Outfitters treats employees like family. Employees share the same goal and pitch in to help each other when needed, even outside of their normal responsibilities. Excellent customer service has brought many repeat and loyal customers to Bowie Outfitters.
- Knowledge and Expertise - Bowie Outfitters sales people are very knowledgeable about the brands and merchandise that they sell and are interested in understanding their customers’ needs. Sales people receive training from the manufacturers as well as attend workshops and seminars sponsored by the company. Employees generally stay with the company for three to five years; some have been with the company for over 10 years.
- Competitive Pricing - Bowie Outfitters offers competitive prices on similar products that are sold by other small retailers and big-box stores.
- Bowie Outfitters sets a monthly budget for community support, primarily in the form of product donation.
- Bowie Outfitters collected and donated clothes to victims of Louisiana’s historic flood in August 2016.
- Sponsored Dream Day Foundation wild game cookout (the day features fishing, ATV riding, games, and food for the patients and families of St. Jude Children's Research Hospital).
- Participates at local fundraising events and promotes other fundraising events at Bowie Outfitters stores.
Tips to help other small business grow:
As more consumers increase their online shopping, it’s important to develop a good website, not only to share information, but also to accept online payments.