Melissa Schilling is NSSF Director, Recruitment and Retention. As such, she directs many of NSSF’s programs aimed at increasing participation in the shooting sports and hunting. She is the coordinator of the upcoming NSSF Industry Summit.
The National Shooting Sports Foundation is currently getting ready to open registration for yet another NSSF Industry Summit. After the last summit in Louisville, Ky., during June 2011, it’s time for another successful summit to showcase where we are as an industry in hitting our goal of increasing hunting and target shooting participation by 20 percent by the end of 2014.
The 2014 NSSF Industry Summit is planned for June 9-11 in Springfield, Mass., home of the Basketball Hall of Fame, Smith & Wesson and the Springfield Armory. NSSF urges all decision makers from throughout the firearms industry and the hunting and shooting sports communities to attend. We are all dedicated to preserving and promoting shooting and hunting, and we need to ask ourselves a couple of questions: Have we reached our goals? What else can we do?
This upcoming summit will host diverse groups of stakeholders concerned with the future of hunting and target shooting. They will represent state and federal agencies, hunting and shooting organizations, manufacturers, shooting ranges, retailers, non-government organizations and media.
The current agenda is jam-packed with information that will benefit all. We will provide participation numbers on where we are as an industry and other, new research. New “Models of Success” programs will be presented, offering a proven blueprint for projects to boost hunting and target shooting participation—and they will be evaluated to further improve their effectiveness. These programs are intended to be implemented nationwide for years to come.
Some of the efforts highlighted during the summit are not necessarily pilot programs. We will look at various programs currently being carried out that have the potential to reach large numbers of participants if extra assistance and resources are available to create a big push. Many ranges are implementing new ideas to help create more traffic. These ideas need to be shared so you can think about how to customize the programs or marketing initiatives to best suit your range and customers.
Break-out sessions will be available for more specific areas and topics that are applicable to the various groups attending the summit. For example, information will be collected to identify the most pressing area in peoples’ range and retail business, so attendees can walk away with more tools to apply once back in the office.
Also included in the agenda are presentations from Jeremy Gutsche and John C. Robinson. Gutsche is regarded as the top trend-spotter and the founder of TrendHunter.com, the world’s largest, most popular trend-spotting website. He is author of Exploiting Chaos, a book on how to spark innovation during times of change.
Robinson is also an author, as well as a leader and mentor in connecting a diversity of youth to outdoor activities.
We want you to be a stakeholder in the future of hunting and the shooting sports. Please remember to mark your calendars to play a part in continuing the upward trend of participation in the industry. Our shared common interest to increase our customer base is why we need all hands on deck in regard to the future of hunting and the shooting sports. Your continued involvement will play an important role in making this event a success.
Registration will open during mid-January. Early-bird registration, prior to March 31, will cost $345 for NSSF members and $495 for nonmembers. All hotel and travel information, as well as the agenda, will be available on the website. For additional information on the 2014 NSSF Industry Summit, visit www.nssf.org/summit.