Are you working on the next big thing?

While I was writing last week’s column, I was reminded of how successful Power-Pole has been over the last few years. The tough economy hasn’t been a problem for them, or at least not one they didn’t overcome. Those things are selling like crazy. I see them everywhere.

I think I know why. They work. That’s a lesson for everyone who’s working on a new product. Some of you are with big companies with formal Research & Development departments. But a surprising number of you are ordinary anglers tinkering in your basements and your garages. You’re working with little more than a couple of hand tools and a dream.

My first Power-Pole was installed on my boat in 2007. Without going through all the details I’ll tell you I never would have qualified for the 2008 Classic without it. At the time, I was impressed. I knew they had a future. At the same time, however, I thought it would be a professional angler’s tool. I never really believed it would work its way down to the recreational ranks.

How wrong I was. Those things are on an enormous number of recreational bass boats. The thing I missed is that guys will spend money on quality products that help them catch more fish, regardless of the economy.

I’m writing about this not because I want to tout Power-Pole, but because I want to encourage everyone out there who’s working on something new. I can’t tell you what’s coming next. It might be a magic bait, a new hook design or a different way of building a rod. It could also be something more complex such as a new depthfinder or an underwater camera that lets you see in muddy water.

Most likely it’s something we can’t imagine, something we have never thought of using, something we don’t know we need until we see and use it. That’s the way most of these things go.

Not only do I not know what’s coming, I don’t care what’s coming. All I need to know is that it’s being worked on right now — somewhere, someplace. The idea is what matters. If you can design something that’ll help us all catch more bass, it’ll sell and you can be successful.

Believe that with all your heart. This is America. There is room for growth. The Great Depression made huge fortunes as well as destroyed them. The same thing is true of the Great Recession. Have confidence in yourself and make something worthwhile. If it works, I’ll be the first in line to buy it.

Don’t let the economy discourage you. Sure, things are tough, but there are still a lot of men and women who are willing to spend money to catch fish. Keep working on your dream. Who knows, you just might invent the next Power-Pole.

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