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Old 12-18-2018, 11:29 AM   #1
Rat
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Default Why did Parker (or any bow company) go out of business?

I have seen many people lamenting the decision by Parker to close their doors; and it usually goes something like, "They build a good bow, my first bow was a Parker."

Maybe that's it, not enough repeat business.

The barrier to entry in the bow market is pretty low; all you need is a CNC machine, and the know how to run it, to create a riser. Then you can outsource the strings and limbs and use a cam system under licensing. With very little R&D and just a little prototyping, you can have your own bow company!

But like it or not, archers aren't looking for the same old bow. This industry thrives on advancement, just like electronics, vehicles and so many more.

Parker built a good bow, no doubt, but there was no buzz and very little innovation.

Top shooters don't shoot Parker bows, TV and Social Media personalities don't shoot Parker bows and you just don't see them marketed like you do other bow companies. They took a risk by not spending money on marketing to be able to deliver a solid bow at a reduced price; and it didn't work.

There is a lesson here, going way back to the early to mid 90s with companies like PSE and Bear. Admittedly they got off track but were able to realize the mistake early on and use that knowledge to get back on track. Today they are among top tier companies in both bow sales and innovation, even though they are not after the same exact demographic (but there is overlap).

Over the years I have seen companies like CSS, Moon Archery, McPhereson and Strother come and go. Why? They all built great bows; was it mismanagement or something else. Many times it's something else.

That's just what happens in a free market, or should happen anyway (without corporate welfare and government bailouts). The market will dictate what sells and what doesn't based on an almost infinite number of variables (marketing, price, innovation, etc).

So, while it stinks that we loose another bow company, especially one that built good, solid, mid-priced bows, the market as a whole will be stronger for it.

Vaya con Dios Parker, it's been a good run.
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Old 12-18-2018, 11:41 AM   #2
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While Parker may have been affordable, there are people like me that realize you just have to wait a year or two and pick up an innovative machine for half the price. I don't imagine I'll ever buy a new bow.
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Old 12-18-2018, 11:43 AM   #3
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The reasons: Mathews, Hoyt, Bowtec, PSE, so on and so forth. It seems the companies that have target bows are the ones that stay in business.

I guess innovation. The customers insatiable appetite is key also.

Last edited by lovemylegacy; 12-18-2018 at 11:45 AM.
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Old 12-18-2018, 04:26 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lovemylegacy View Post
The reasons: Mathews, Hoyt, Bowtec, PSE, so on and so forth. It seems the companies that have target bows are the ones that stay in business.

I guess innovation. The customers insatiable appetite is key also.
I think that's a big reason as well, like it or not, marketing works. When you have big name hunters and top ranked archers shooting your gear it sells better.
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Old 12-18-2018, 07:28 PM   #5
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I could talk on this topic for days on end.

But one key point is: I can buy last year... or a 2 year old big name bow for the same as a brand new mid level/ low level bow and be way ahead on resale, performance and tune ability
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Old 12-19-2018, 03:26 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by Low Fence View Post
I could talk on this topic for days on end.

But one key point is: I can buy last year... or a 2 year old big name bow for the same as a brand new mid level/ low level bow and be way ahead on resale, performance and tune ability
Yep, that's me all day! I haven't bought a new bow in a long time.

I bought both my Creeds off of here, half off, loaded. One guy told me he had shot it a bunch, I asked how much, he said "I ran about a hundred shots through her". I basically bought a new bow.
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Old 12-20-2018, 01:25 AM   #7
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Iíll agree that a good product just isnít enough anymore. Marketing has changed the game. That goes from social media, sponsored pros, tv commercials, the list goes on. And most of it takes some form of capital to make headway. The short films Mathews did this year were high quality for example.
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Old 12-20-2018, 01:58 AM   #8
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Marketing. Iím on a bow hunting site and canít remember the last time I saw Parker or Martin being listed as having something new and innovative coming out.


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Old 12-20-2018, 09:58 AM   #9
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The problem is everybody says "ah man I loved my old Parker" but nobody currently has one. A bow company can't stay in business by guys being nostalgic and loving their old bows, but not buying new ones haha.
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Old 12-20-2018, 06:39 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by stickbowcoop View Post
The problem is everybody says "ah man I loved my old Parker" but nobody currently has one. A bow company can't stay in business by guys being nostalgic and loving their old bows, but not buying new ones haha.
And neither can small town archery shops.
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