Is The Outdoor Industry Ready For This Headline?


Imagine you own or work for a brand in the outdoor industry, and woke up to this headline:


Amazon Acquires REI


This was the reality for brands in the grocery and natural product industry just over a month ago when Amazon announced it would acquire Whole Foods. The news instantly generated more questions than answers. How will things change? What comes next? Who do we call? These were some of the questions still being asked at the NBJ executive summit last week, a gathering of the nutrition industry’s most influential thinkers, brand owners, and power brokers.

As the outdoor industry travels to Salt Lake City for the Outdoor Retailer Summer Market, for another year of demos, meetings, and networking, consider how a headline like this would impact conversations if it appeared tomorrow.

If you’re not sure, here are some hard-line concepts to consider:

  • Change will happen. You can’t blame Amazon for this. Your customers are driving it. You can choose to address and control the situation or carry on reacting to it.
  • Take advantage of the relationships you form with customers. Pay attention to where, how, and why they’re engaging with your brand, and let this guide your efforts.
  • Be deliberate about brand messaging and catalog management on Amazon. That’s how you position your brand while supporting your brick and mortar partners and speaking to core customers.

The headline above is obviously just a hypothetical, but better to openly discuss and think about hypothetical situations ahead of time than react to actual news without any idea what to do.

Originally published by Brian Gonsalves on LinkedIn.