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price raise on shoulder mount whitetails?

Discussion in 'Deer and Gameheads' started by IAtaxi, Sep 24, 2017.

  1. fish stuffer

    fish stuffer Active Member

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    I've followed the "pricing posts" for years also. They are interesting. I'm supprised Ken hasn't started a pricing Catagory, right along with gameheads and fish.

    McKenzie has us by the bals? I think they know we will pay their prices because of one stop shopping. I know I have been placing an order and was going to use someone else but they didn't have an item i needed so I ordered from McK. just because they had it. I didn't want to pay shipping twice. Anyone remember the old days when you could postdate a check? Ever been so poor you had to do it? I have. Isn't that what McK. does when they let you pay with ck by phone? Money won't come out of your account for 9 days. I think they know most beginners are dumb and chg according to the guy down the road. I'll cut his price and I can order even though I have no money, get my deer out and then run and put money in the bank. Why else would they do it?

    I watch people, even in other bussinesses. Most have an angle. I'm convinced, if you open a processing buss, you can get all the deer heads you can handle, even if your work sucks. We have 2 around here who do great com. woek, but inherated land on the main hwy. They put up a sign, been going strong 30 years, even though they are zoned residential. I'm res. and county said I can't have a sign, or use an outdoor building. Both these guys have shops, not adjoined to their house.

    We have one who 's father set him up. TV advertising, cooler, billboards on interstate ,whole 9 yards, before internet. Several spinoffs from him. If you put a guy mounting your ducks, he gets the name of all your hunters, because of the fed. law requiring you to keep tag on the bird. On a deer or fish, the tag only has a number.

    We got one who has health issues, so 2 coolers run by women load him up. First year in buss, all he can do.

    Biggest mistake i made was getting on social media. I wasn't socialble enough. "Who does the best job on deer? All the friends jump in and say Fred, Ralph, Paul, it's a joke. Some of the sorriest ones who were slaming them together were getting recomendations from "friends".

    I'm actually thinking of lowering my price, becomming a powder monkey, and start slaming them together myself. I tan my own capes in house, I care about quality, my clientele list is grownig, but not like I want. I can dry preserve, point the ears up like a doberman pincer, stretch the neck 4 inches bigger to make it look huge, I should do well. Providing I get that little roller that you use to make the nose look like a rasberry, use lots of bushes, and put 3 gigantic wrinkles on the side, even though the deer only has his head turned slightly to the side.
     
  2. Trophy Specialist

    Trophy Specialist Active Member

    Fishinfool, years ago I had a couple very cheep competitors move in taking away a huge chunk of the local deer business. I decided to offer two mounting options then to compete. One was a el-cheapo mount (DP, bondo ears, cheapest forms....) which took me about 4-5 hours of labor to complete. I also offered a better quality mount option which takes me about twice as many hours to complete. It gave me the opportunity to educate people on the differences in taxidermy and my business skyrocketed. Only one in 10 would opt for the cheapskate mount option. If you are only offering a high quality mount with no lesser option, then callers will just focus on your price and will tune out anything else you have to say. Give them options though and they are forced to listen and make an educated decision. Two years ago I moved to a new area and had to set up my business from scratch. In my first year here I maxed out on work and this past year I'm over max to it will probably work anywhere.
     

  3. SAME !!! It has hurt this industry more than it has helped it.

    DP
     
  4. George

    George The older I get, the better I was.

    You know, I wish this site let me tell you how I really feel about these last comments. They would delete them if I said them, but here it is in the redacted version:

    1. I'm so sick of hearing about McKenzie screwing over us that I could just puke You losers flocked to them when they carried products that none of the other smaller suppliers carried and those smaller suppliers either went out of business or sold their line of products to McKenzie. There are still dozens, if not thousands of places you can buy most of the general supplies and as far as the manikins, there is always Research trying to eke out a living. As for deer and hog forms, there are at least half a dozen other options. Not a single one of you grouse about the discount McKenzie offers when you buy in bulk, but half of you are just too damned dumb to consolidate your orders like that. Then when you get a discount, you clutch that to your chest as if it were the golden goose and don't pass it along to your clients. When I place an order, the shipping is paid for with the discount. The forms are free because I learned Civics 101 in grade school and mark my prices to have the cost of forms absorbed by what I charge my customer. So if McKenzie has you by the balls, you put them right in their hands, they didn't reach for them.

    2. The internet has ruined my business. RIGHT! Like the Titanic stopped cruises. WE killed our business and we didn't need anyone's help. I'll bet most of you have some little "secret" you refuse to give to other to help them make their work better. I came up in the "closed shop" world where a young kid like me got kicked out of every taxidermy shop as soon as I asked a question. You Nimrods seem to think what we do is rocket science or brain surgery. The majority of us are one-man operations because we simply don't play well with others. Yet with the advent of the internet, I can go and get an illustrated parts break-down and a step by step manual on rebuilding a Holley 4-barrel carburator, replacing brakes, how to build a radio, and repairing most everything you have in your life. Are you REALLY that dense as to think someone, someplace wanted fame and fortune was NOT going to post their methods of TAXIDERMY on the web. If that doesn't suit you, what are you feelings about CD's and DVD's? What do you have to say about those people who sell DVD's of their personal methods of doing things. When I was coming up, the old coots running the shops told me that Van Dykes had ruined their business. It seems that Burt VanDyke had the audacity to add descritptions and methods of use in his catalog. He even sold KITS that included everything you'd need to mount a deer and then tell you how to do it. Not much difference from old J.W. Elwood and his Northwest School of Taxidermy and his Northwest Taxidermy Supply company who started this post WWII stampede for every school boy to mount his own animals. Some of you think you should get every deer taken within a 200 mile radius and that if you took in more deer, you'd make more money. If you took in HALF the deer you currently do and charged twice as much, you'd make the same thing. How many freezers do you have in your shop? Al Holmes said it best: You never should have more than 2 freezers or one large one. Having 12 freezers full of hides wating to mount is costing you money. You never make one cent of a hide in a freezer. I have managed to piss off some very talented individuals by what I'm going to say next. "Taxidermists are the dumbest people in the world." I was unapologetic when I said it at the NTA 20 years ago and I'm still unapologetic. We are terrible business people who think we're special. Most claim to be artists of sort when they use the art created by others to complete their craftsmanship. Start carving your own manikins, tanning your own hides, casting your own eyes, making your own hide paste and building your own dioramas. That's what we did back in the late 50's, and if you can't do it, stop claiming to be better taxidermists than we were.

    I understand that in today's world, it's always the fault of someone or some thing that has caused us issues. One day you're going to wake up and realize that Walt Kelly said it best in his 1960 "Pogo" comic strip: "We have met the enemy and he is us."
     
  5. byrdman

    byrdman Well-Known Member

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    George has it...........McKenzie does not have the best forms,eyes,etc......just convenience of everything on one site....and as far as taxidermt vids go.....just to watch one doesn't mean you can do what you are seeing........have many customers tell me they watched videos to learn to do their own mounts........none even tried.....and George.....according to the trapperman.com wonks..."taxidermists are"...the dumbest people in the world...
     
  6. George if this comment was aimed at my post above yours, you totally took it out of context. I didn't say the internet has ruined my business......I said social media has hurt this industry, and what I meant by that was everyone wants to be a star and social media allows most to be just that. I see countless people on FB bullshitting there way to fame and all the newbies following along pushing them to the top. But these bullshitters can't even run water let alone a business.

    As for the internet, I love it. I'm selling my online videos everyday as well as all the used fleshing machines I can get my hands on (just check out the archives page on my site). The internet has not ruined my business it has made it stronger by reaching more people than I ever could with any other type of marketing.

    DP
     
  7. Trophy Specialist

    Trophy Specialist Active Member

    I don't get the McKenzie bashing on here. I have been ordering from them for over 20 years and have never had one unresolved problem with them yet. They have never even made one mistake on one order in all those years too, which I find amazing for service. Sure I've gotten a couple defective products from them over the years, but considering the thousands of purchases made there, that's not bad and they also promptly replaced them too, which is good once again. Yes their prices have risen over the years, but there are enough other competitors out there to shop elsewhere for either better pricing or quality supplies. Their higher prices and/or lesser quality products cost them thousands of dollars of business from me this past year and without their 15% discount, that number would have been a lot higher. No big deal to me to place orders with two or more companies. I just keep a running list of what I need and a couple times per year I sit down and organize the list, shop around and place the orders.
     
  8. byrdman

    byrdman Well-Known Member

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    lots of folks have been shopping at Walmart for years...doesnt mean they are getting the best products or best prices...just able to get everything at one place.......
     
  9. Bill Yox

    Bill Yox Well-Known Member

    D Price i get what youre saying.
     
  10. ANDY

    ANDY Well-Known Member

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    Ive asked this question to everybody I flesh for and I have gotten the same response from just about all of them ,
    their all worried about what the guy down the road charges , instead of charging for their business..
     
  11. tem

    tem Well-Known Member

    george said somthing that hit the core.charge so the customer is buying all the material. never looked at it like that. i think im getting it now.
     
  12. George

    George The older I get, the better I was.

    LOL D, not aimed at you at all. I think you know as I do, without the internet a guy like Bill Yox , Ken Walker, Richard Christoforo and dozens of other real artisans of this business wouldn't have a clue or even CARE who a flunky like me was. I' will NEVER forget the first time I came on here and Bill Yox sent me a PM. It said, "George, I'm sorry, but are you somebody?" I still chuckle when I think of that and I recall answering him, "No, Bill, I'm just a nobody with a big mouth." Bill knows I'm still a nobody and that's OK. I still love him too.

    I was referring to that bunch of crybabies who claim that they can't make a living because even Gomer down the street can watch a video for free and mount his own deer. As someone else just said, most of those people are one-shot wonders who quickly decide that taxidermy isn't what they want to spend their time with.
     
  13. Bill Yox

    Bill Yox Well-Known Member

    George now you know there was more to the conversation than just a blunt question like that haha. And youre a somebody in MY book. We all fill a niche. I hate to think what niche sometimes, but nonetheless...
     
  14. Richard C

    Richard C Well-Known Member

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    George is right on again . Nobody can say it any better and clearer than George ! The only problem is nobody takes the advise because they "can't get that price in their area " . This price issue has been going on since the day taxidermy was born . It will be around when it dies due to animal rights and gun control . A few years ago someone was shot in Mass with a crossbow so you crossbow guys will be toast too. Around here you have to spend $525 .00 for a bad deer head , I guess ever bad work has a manufacturing cost, who knew !
     
  15. byrdman

    byrdman Well-Known Member

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    three years ago I took Georges advice and changed a method I used for 45 or so years and never looked back, and noticed no diffetence in results. I thank him for convincing me that coleman fuel is not nessecary for washing birds. the money saved in that time plus the running to the store is great. Just an extra 5 min orso in tumbler and blow dry as usual. Might mention too that per Nancy's advice , I changed over from 40 years of using hardwood shavings to cob grit of two sizes and birds are drying better cleaner faster than ever. So you never know where any tips or advice might come from . changed my wing cleaning method also.
     
  16. boarhunter67

    boarhunter67 Well-Known Member

    I'm in the same boat as those who have said everytime I raise my prices to slow down business it has the reverse effect. Also, for those who wonder about overhead, I count every single thing and my overhead is just under 50%. I posted actual numbers in a thread in the Industry forum. I'm at $700 for a deer and everytime I raise my prices I have the same fear that I won't get any business and that it's too much. Then business always come in and by the end of the season I wonder if I should have raised it more. Obviously there's a cap, but I think many taxidermists at the low end are far below their cap. I only do it part time, but if I could only get $350 for a deer with the same expenses I have, there's no way I would keep doing it.