FLW Could Serve as Model, Even If You Don’t Have $1 Million

Back in August, FLW Outdoors made fantasy history by delivering the first million-dollar grand prize. Even those fantasy providers who can’t afford seven-figure purses, though, should be able to take something away from the contest’s success.

When any new fantasy venture seeks to pay out enormous prizes, the common worry has to be how it will come up with the funding and how long it will take for such a game to turn a profit — helping to ensure its existence. No such worry was necessary in this case, though.

“We don’t expect to make money on the fantasy fishing game,” FLW Outdoors founder Irwin Jacobs tells FSB.com.

Jacobs came up with the concept as a way to generate interest in the Wal-Mart FLW Tour bass-fishing tournaments as well as an entry point to Genmar, reportedly the world’s largest producer of boats for recreational use (such as fishing), which Jacobs also owns. Drawing consumers to the fishing tournaments also leads them to the tour’s many sponsors. Those fans who latch own can show the kind of brand loyalty commonly seen among NASCAR fans.

“More so than NASCAR fans,” Jacobs says. “The power of this group is enormous. If a mother has a husband and children who love fishing, she’s been very supportive of the products.”

And Jacobs says that the fantasy competition succeeding in drawing new fans to the Tour.

“Most of the winners had never had a rod and reel in their hands,” he says.

Good for them, you might be saying to yourself, but I don’t have a million dollars to hand out and fantasy is my business. I’m not looking to sell something else.

Other companies are looking to sell, though, and the fantasy industry can deliver relatively affluent, attentive consumers and a growing market. As we’ve reported here before, the field of fantasy sports players is growing at a rate of about 23 percent per year, and those players spend four to six hours a week tending to their teams online.

The big purse was the main draw to the FLW Fantasy Fishing game, and although most fantasy sites can’t support such large sums, top brands looking for new ways to reach consumers could. Gillette, Coors Light and Coke Zero are among those that have already sought out new paths to fantasy players.


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One Response to “FLW Could Serve as Model, Even If You Don’t Have $1 Million”

  1. Chris Moran Says:

    Nice writing style. Looking forward to reading more from you.

    Chris Moran

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