Welcome to 2019 where the breaks are big, and the growth is lackluster. I've waited a month to delve into the stagnation of our hobby and the reasons I think we're killing ourselves. We do not have growth, we have transplant. For example, one week you're in The Empire Guys, the next you're in ACME Breaks. We see the same people, and are very grateful, but there must be change forthcoming in order to sustain our hobby.
I have been in the restaurant business for 7 years and get approached almost daily by someone wanting us to advertise with them. What have I learned? Traditional advertising is not very effective. We are bombarded with so much crap telling us where to buy, what to wear, how to look, that we have become numb to most everything. It takes something special to catch our attention. We try to promote as many break rooms as possible, and our customers, our friends, are very loyal to patronize those rooms. But due to the size of the community, we still tag the same people over and over, burnout ensues, or at the very least, people overspend and must take a break, no pun intended.
How do we sustain life, or even better, grow? I'll share an example. I love to smoke cigars. I rarely have the time to fully enjoy one now, but in the beginning, I was frenzied. I learned everything I could, preached the joys of the cigar, told all my friends, and now have a sizeable group I can talk with and share my hobby. Breaking is just like that. We are cannibalizing each other instead of adding to our table. People win a few helmets, and next thing you know they're breakers as well. Great, but now the customer has become the seller, and as someone that plays both roles, once you start breaking, your appetite to get in other rooms is quickly overshadowed by the mountain of product you walk by every day. If you're in my shoes, you understand. Bottom line: As much as I love to see the same people all the time, I know it's not feasible to lean on them day in and day out.
I'm proposing a very simple solution. Tell everyone you know. Share the joy, the excitement, the adrenaline of our hobby and before you know it, our micro-community of breakers and razzers will soon become an army. There is strength in numbers. Who are you telling?