Some local breeders would like to get together to pool our resources for advertising and also to offer more sales prospects at one time. Our thoughts are that we can put all of our sales horses together in such a way that a person could fly into our area and see 5-7 horses (visiting different farms) that would fit their needs on one trip. We want to create a non-formal group and help each other out, and in the long run increase overall sales in our area. Are there any obvious pitfalls to our plans? Can this be done in a non-formal way? How do we make sure that everyone gets equal exposure and doesn't feel angry if another breeder makes a sale? Thanks!
One of the most common reasons that horse buyers give for heading to Europe is the ability to see and try more horses in one location. “Breeders groups” are an excellent method for horse sellers in North America to make a horse-shopping trip worth the buyer’s time and money.
Sellers can benefit in several ways from participation in these groups. As a group they can purchase more and bigger ads and pursue other marketing venues more economically than by acting alone. An established group provides a ready-made network, allowing individual sellers a way to receive referrals from other breeders as well as to help their shopping clients locate the best horse for their circumstances.
There are many variations in the structure of these groups, from corporations to much less formal arrangements. Generally speaking, the larger the group, the more formality is required. Planning is important, to define the purpose and scope of the group and establish rules that promote fairness.
When starting a group you should think about many factors, and I will discuss a few of them here.
At the very basic planning stages, try to think of all of the possible scenarios and situations that may arise as the group operates. Then, adopt rules for the group that will promote fairness and help to avoid any negative outcomes. Plan how the shared resources will be used. And encourage members to communicate to minimize misunderstandings.
Do you belong to a breeders’ group? We would all love to hear about your experiences and the ins and outs of how your group operates. Send an email to Ingrid@equinnovation.com. I’ll publish your comments in a future issue of The Edge, and give your group a plug!
Have you got a question about equine marketing that you would like answered? Submit your question by email to: Ingrid@equinnovation.com
Copyright 2005. This article first appeared in The Equine Business Edge, Equinnovation's complimentary newsletter (click to subscribe).
Contents may not be reproduced in any form without permission.
For information on republishing this article, please email Ingrid@equinnovation.com or call Ingrid at 231-275-3355.