Reel Talk / Four ways to grow your fishing guide business in 2023

Austin Neary

Austin Neary

8/1/2023

Four ways to grow your fishing guide business in 2023

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Life as a fishing guide is the ultimate dream for many anglers. The prospect of spending every day on the water, sharing their passion for fishing with others, and earning a living from their beloved pastime seems like the perfect blend of work and leisure. However, the reality is that becoming a successful fishing guide requires much more than just casting lines and reeling in fish. It demands dedication, unwavering commitment, community support, and a touch of luck. Despite these challenges, it is entirely possible to thrive as a fishing guide and turn this dream into a rewarding reality. In this article, we’re going to explore four strategies you can deploy today to increase your odds of succeeding as a guide.

1. Hyper-focus on a few bodies of water

Instead of spreading yourself thin across every potential location, consider concentrating your guiding services on just a few nearby bodies of water that share similar characteristics. By consistently focusing on these waters, you can gradually establish yourself as a go-to expert and a brand name in that area. Clients will appreciate your in-depth knowledge of the fish behavior and hotspots, making you a sought-after guide for both local and visiting anglers.

Your expertise on these waters will also extend to local tournaments. Your intimate understanding of your chosen locations will give you an edge in these competitions, and consistent wins can attract more clients and boost your reputation even further.

2. Build or partner with a local tackle shop

Opening a small local tackle shop can complement your guiding business in remarkable ways. Not only does it provide an additional revenue stream, but it also strengthens your ties with the community. The synergy between your guiding services and the tackle shop can be mutually beneficial. Clients who book your guiding trips can easily access the gear they need at your shop, and in turn, customers who visit your tackle shop might be interested in experiencing the fishing adventures you offer.

Investing in your community and being a go-to source for fishing equipment fosters trust and loyalty among customers, which can lead to increased word-of-mouth referrals and repeat business.

3. Create consumable content

In the digital age, content is king. Anglers constantly seek valuable information about how to catch more fish with less energy. Leverage your expertise by creating consumable content such as videos, pictures, and blogs about your home bodies of water. Share your knowledge of the best techniques, seasonal patterns, and tackle recommendations. Establish yourself as the go-to information source for fishing in your area.

Social media platforms, a personal blog, or even collaborating with local outdoor publications can expand your reach and attract a broader audience. As your content gains traction, you can explore partnerships with fishing-related brands, potentially generating sponsorships and additional income streams.

4. Become a seller on FishTips

Fishtips provides a public platform for professional guides to showcase their expertise and earn additional income. The platform can introduce you to a broader audience of customers, including anglers who don’t need a full guided trip. Offering valuable insights and practical advice in the marketplace can build your reputation and buttress your other sources of marketing and revenue.

Furthermore, FishTips offers a unique advantage in helping professional fishing guides establish a robust online presence faster and with greater ease than traditional social media channels. In a matter of minutes you can create your profile, post your first tip, and establish your credibility online with no additional resources or content.

Conclusion

Remember, to succeed in these strategies, it's crucial to remain focused on your niche while consistently providing value. Your passion for fishing combined with a business-minded approach will pave the way to a fulfilling and financially rewarding career as a fishing guide. Embrace these four methods, and you'll be well on your way to making your dream of "fishing for a living" a reality!

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Austin Neary is the founder and operator of Dream Catcher's Fishing based out of western North Carolina. For over 10 years he has put clients on monster bass in highland reservoirs, and beautiful trout in neighboring rivers and streams. You can check out some of his recent tips here.


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