*


All times are UTC + 1 hour



Post new topic Reply to topic
 [ 16 posts ]  Go to page 1, 2  Next
Author Message
 Post subject: What do you feel about kite brands
PostPosted: Fri Jul 25, 2014 2:15 pm 
Offline
Medium Poster

Joined: Mon Mar 03, 2008 7:32 pm
Posts: 196
I work in a marketing company (no way kite related) and on the way in I was curious about the kite industry and what works and what doesn't.

What do you all think?

You buy gear every so often but what sways your choice?

Is it gear that is available in the shops, where you just browse and pick one?
Do pro riders and contests influence your choice?
Do the ads in magazines do anything for you? What ad content is relevant?
Are you loyal to a brand and if so why? Customer Service reputation?
What about price point? These things aren't cheap

Assuming all products are high performance, if you owned a kite company, what would you do? How would you reach out to people for sales?

What pisses you off about kite companies?
What are they doing right?

I'm not looking to start a brand war here, I'm just really curious from a customer point of view. In your day to day life, how do you decide who to go with assuming all products are equal (which I understand there are differences…)

For me… I like the photos in ads, but unless I'm interested in the kite (which consists of an initial visual attraction) I won't read much into it and flip the page. I also had a 5 line kite once that I had a really hard time with… I've never bought that company's product since or given them any consideration really. I seem to gravitate towards something a little different. I don't want to fly the same thing that everyone else is using. Not because I had different performance needs, but because that 17 yr old voice in my head still wants to be different.

So…. what's your perspective?


{ SHARE_ON_FACEBOOK } { SHARE_ON_TWITTER } { SHARE_ON_ORKUT } { SHARE_ON_DIGG } { SHARE_ON_MYSPACE } { SHARE_ON_DELICIOUS }
Top
Profile
 Post subject: Re: What do you feel about kite brands
PostPosted: Fri Jul 25, 2014 4:48 pm 
Offline
Frequent Poster

Joined: Tue Mar 21, 2006 11:22 pm
Posts: 296
Location: montana
Just one kiters opinion.

Buying gear? if you kite you need to keep your gear somewhat up to date.
I try to change out primary kite every 3 years, lite wind still have a 06 that is in perfect shape., High wind kite same thing.

Shops? there are few around and the hot spots like hood or outerbanks, The sticker shock is enough to make me turn around and walk out. No way in hell anyone is going to put down 2k for one kite.

Pro's gear may influence some for me it makes me want to learn more and push harder. Never have I ever thought if I fly the kite they are on will I be able to jump megaloops in 60mph winds on a 7 meter.

Ads in magazine's make me curious as to whats new but again doesn't influence me to buy anything.

Brand Loyalty? Nope all the kites are close to the same and there are good things and bad things about every kite company. Could care less about the brand as long as the kite meets my criteria of what I want to fly and its a good deal I'd buy it.

Price Point is NUMBER 1. 1000$ or less for a new kite not a penny more. If its a few years old who cares the latest and greatest was just that a year or 2 ago.
2 and 3 grand for one kite is not ever going to happen even if thats not the final price at 1600 or more still is too much for a piece of fabric that will be worth nothing in a few years the depriciation of a kite is worse than buying a motorhome.

If I where in charge of a kite company. The way I would reach the consumer is no questions asked demo. You pay shipping to and from and put a credit card down in case its trashed when it comes back. We would never ever charge you for the whole thing, but only for real repair at Airtime, fix my kite.

I'd even go as far as a rental type model. OR is trying this but they are too far out of range in price if they cut in half they'd really be on to something.

Demos are hard to come by unless you live in the "popular destinations" the masses live elsewhere and want to try kites. Send em on over and a true demo isn't a 10 minute sesh. It takes several hours and several sessions to make a intelligent decision.

I wouldn't change the name and mess with models that have years of success and if something works don't change it. you can change graphics, lines, whatever doesn't effect the flight of the kite.

The thing that pisses me off about kite companies. Hype, price, and failures that aren't properly tested before releasing the kite, then bury it less than a year later.

What are they doing right? keeping us flying each year and happy to be on the water, snow, land without them none of this sport is possible.

Price really drives alot of budget minded kiters . Like any sport just cause you have the latest and greatest doesn't mean you know how to use it to its potential.

thats my .02 cents


Top
Profile
 Post subject: Re: What do you feel about kite brands
PostPosted: Fri Jul 25, 2014 6:21 pm 
Offline
Very Frequent Poster

Joined: Sun Jun 11, 2006 4:01 am
Posts: 695
Nice that someone asked

Is it gear that is available in the shops, where you just browse and pick one?
* HELL NO a kite $ 1600 a bar $500 it costs more than buying a used car! it's a agonizing decision based on FORUM CHAT and reviews written by RIDERS not magazines

Do pro riders and contests influence your choice?
* NO because I don't ride like them nor would I want to

Do the ads in magazines do anything for you? What ad content is relevant?
* No, it's just cool shots and blurb. But if you know little about kites they may influence you I guess?
Online videos are useful if the show the F&*N kite (some just show bikini girls)

Are you loyal to a brand and if so why? Customer Service reputation?
Yes because of performance for the type of riding I do *COUGH** North**COUGH**. DEFINITELY not for Customer Service (Except for you Dan! You are the best!)

What about price point? These things aren't cheap
* Price becomes a factor if it's 40% cheaper... for +/- 10% being able to ride comfortably like you want is much more important

Assuming all products are high performance, if you owned a kite company, what would you do? How would you reach out to people for sales?
** Demos! Although it's a double edge sword (if your product is not the best people will find out). BTW kudos to Dimitri seems like he's walking the walk.

What pisses you off about kite companies?
Stuff breaking and wearing out too soon.
Retarded ads

What are they doing right?
Some are putting real science and R&D in their product and it shows with clear performance advantage. Others are putting in real quality, although they are few!


Top
Profile
 Post subject: Re: What do you feel about kite brands
PostPosted: Fri Jul 25, 2014 7:11 pm 
Offline
Very Frequent Poster

Joined: Sun Jul 13, 2008 9:49 am
Posts: 1077
Location: shallow sea
yes Craz, i pretty much support all you mentioned.
you have to have the ability to test the kite. other wise you'll turn into the brand hostage and even if you don't completely satisfied with your purchase you still praise the kite and the brand. you just don't want to admit (to yourself and to your friends) the mistake, a $2k mistake.

other day i counted the kite brands known to me and got somewhere about 56 to 60 names. some 5 or 6 of them don't exist any more i guess.
looking at that list i realized there are only about 4 brands i could buy the kite from!
majority of the smaller brands are not represented in my country, the rest of them are mostly the so called "high performance" kites (which in reality are the waste of time and money) and the handful of heavily overpriced and overrated brands.

about advertising. could not care less about it. only thing i look at are the clues about qualities of advertised kite. i don't care about some pro moves on it at all.
descriptions of the kites on the brands web sites are complete bullshit to be honest, if not to say complete lie!

what pisses you off about kite companies?
the fact that most of them make kites for their sheep-weight team riders, not for the real life average joe.

what are they doing right?
stagnating the industry, lying to your face in the ads and copying the competitors achievements.


Top
Profile
 Post subject: Re: What do you feel about kite brands
PostPosted: Fri Jul 25, 2014 7:27 pm 
Offline
Medium Poster

Joined: Mon Mar 03, 2008 7:32 pm
Posts: 196
great insights. For me, I like to know what brands are out there and what they are doing, but with some kite experience, I really notice subtle feels in the kite when I ride. I like low end, but not aggressive, I like easy upwind, but not at the cost of stability or grunt. The only way to decide these things is to demo. And I also agree that a 10 minute ride isn't enough. You need to spend a week with it.

I decide based on written reviews and magazine kite tests. The rider reviews posted online can often be skewed.

What I'm hearing here is that you like to be informed about products through ads, but will not decide until you can really do a personal demo. Brand averting you feel is not worthwhile for a buying decision, but is good to give information. If performance meets your expectation, you then become loyal to the brand. And having equipment that will last is a great quality because in 5 years the kites will not sell on the used market.

What I'm also reading into this is that you feel that most kite brands don't know you. You guys mention ads or product descriptions being misleading….

in short, you want a great product at a very reasonable price that is built to last and performs at a high level. Let the quality speak and dictate the brand reputation from there….


Top
Profile
 Post subject: Re: What do you feel about kite brands
PostPosted: Fri Jul 25, 2014 7:49 pm 
Offline
Very Frequent Poster
User avatar

Joined: Tue Jul 08, 2003 7:06 pm
Posts: 2259
Location: MD
When I first started kiting I tried to demo every kite I could get my hands on, owned a few different ones over the years, but have mostly settled on one brand for kites. I keep my options open for boards.

In no order -

* Customer Service & SUPPORT
* Quality
* Performance

CUSTOMER SERVICE - I live in the U.S. and buy from a U.S. company. All the horror stories I hear with customer support are when somebody has to deal with a distributor as their point of contact. I want to be able to pick up the phone and immediately speak to the manufacturer, and another kiter who knows the product and can get me a part if I need it. A great local shop that is well stocked with warranty replacement parts is great also. There is too much bullshit with many companies who make you wait or want you to prove it is their fault. A good company will take care of you quickly.

QUALITY - look, every company will have issues from time to time, there is no perfect solution. But some companies have major defects that continue year after year. LE seams that blow out, weak strut stitching, shitty bars, safety releases you can't rely on, etc. They know about these problems. They choose to do nothing about it. Don't ask the guy selling you the kite, ask some folks using the kite how the quality is. They may be a multi-year user and will tell you, "the kite performs great, but I have this seam blows out ever year..."

PERFORMANCE - Hey, it's got to fly nice! A good safety is important also. One you can depend on to fully depower things when you have to put it down and nobody is around.


Top
Profile
 Post subject: Re: What do you feel about kite brands
PostPosted: Fri Jul 25, 2014 8:02 pm 
Offline
Rare Poster

Joined: Fri Aug 16, 2013 4:30 pm
Posts: 21
I care a lot about brands, you know Cabrinha are going to overcharge you for image and deliver crap material with bells and whistles, just like they used to with Pryde in windsurfing, they appeal to newcomer wannabes who figure it must be good cos I paid the most money for it.

You know Best will always be shit and fly to the left.

You know Naish will always be reliable but just a tad off the pace, because they're concentrating on sea sweeping.

You know North will always be reliable quality wise but are so up themselves they persist in keeping old style alive that no-one wants, like five lines and bow ties.

You know Slingshot when it's good is very good but they will always fuck up and deliver Links, TD2's and screw up good models with bad bridles (even now with the RPM), just wait til the Fuel bridle reports start coming in.

Then you know there are crap brands like Epic, Blade and that Polish rip off Lou Wainman outfit.

Then there's the also rans like Ozone and Airrush who offer huge margins to dealers who then just end up being over stocked and trash them out anyway.

Have I missed any?


Top
Profile
 Post subject: Re: What do you feel about kite brands
PostPosted: Fri Jul 25, 2014 8:13 pm 
Offline
Very Frequent Poster

Joined: Sun Jul 13, 2008 9:49 am
Posts: 1077
Location: shallow sea
CaptainArgh wrote:
When I first started kiting I tried to demo every kite I could get my hands on, owned a few different ones over the years, but have mostly settled on one brand for kites. I keep my options open for boards.

In no order -

* Customer Service & SUPPORT
* Quality
* Performance

CUSTOMER SERVICE - I live in the U.S. and buy from a U.S. company. All the horror stories I hear with customer support are when somebody has to deal with a distributor as their point of contact. I want to be able to pick up the phone and immediately speak to the manufacturer, and another kiter who knows the product and can get me a part if I need it. A great local shop that is well stocked with warranty replacement parts is great also. There is too much bullshit with many companies who make you wait or want you to prove it is their fault. A good company will take care of you quickly.

QUALITY - look, every company will have issues from time to time, there is no perfect solution. But some companies have major defects that continue year after year. LE seams that blow out, weak strut stitching, shitty bars, safety releases you can't rely on, etc. They know about these problems. They choose to do nothing about it. Don't ask the guy selling you the kite, ask some folks using the kite how the quality is. They may be a multi-year user and will tell you, "the kite performs great, but I have this seam blows out ever year..."

PERFORMANCE - Hey, it's got to fly nice! A good safety is important also. One you can depend on to fully depower things when you have to put it down and nobody is around.

you sound just like one certain kite brand with double S abbreviation worthless infomercial sounds like. you are contradicting yourself. why do you need so much customer support if your gear is quote: bomb-proof? are you having problems with your "domestic" product?

and nice definition of the PERFORMANCE! now i know what it means, still not clear what are its measuring units thou...


Top
Profile
 Post subject: Re: What do you feel about kite brands
PostPosted: Fri Jul 25, 2014 8:30 pm 
Offline
Very Frequent Poster
User avatar

Joined: Sun Nov 03, 2002 1:00 am
Posts: 3920
Location: OUTER BANKS (NC) USA. Owner of EPICKITES
Quote:
Then you know there are crap brands like Epic, Blade and that Polish rip off Lou Wainman outfit.

I think you said enough Mr.PinkNorthPride this is the reason why I will send you an EPIC kite for you to demo so you can actually try the kite instead of seating behind your computer and trashing most of the brands. I am here in Greece doing demos and you won't believe the amazing feed back we are getting from people that are actually into kitesurfing. So since you are from the UK why don't to take a trip to Greece. Our next stop will be in Kos, Santorini, Paros and then Mykonos.
Have I missed anything?

By the way, excellent post Mr.graphik this gives me an idea of spending more money and increase my demo fleet so people can have a chance to demo the EPIC kites.


Attachments:
DSC_1706 2.jpg
DSC_1706 2.jpg [ 260.59 KIB | Viewed 245 times ]
DSC_1835 1.jpg
DSC_1835 1.jpg [ 406.63 KIB | Viewed 245 times ]
Tried the S14 and wants to buy S9 and S14.jpg
Tried the S14 and wants to buy S9 and S14.jpg [ 258.15 KIB | Viewed 245 times ]
Top
Profile
 Post subject: Re: What do you feel about kite brands
PostPosted: Fri Jul 25, 2014 8:31 pm 
Offline
Very Frequent Poster

Joined: Sun Jul 13, 2008 9:49 am
Posts: 1077
Location: shallow sea
PinkNorthPride wrote:
...Have I missed any?

yeah, Core.

you know Core when you see yellowish-white slow turning kite with the heavy price tag still attached to its wing tip and signed "german engineering meets chinese fabrication" and "so boring you don't have to count the sheeps tonight"...
:lol:


Top
Profile
Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
Post new topic Reply to topic
 [ 16 posts ]  Go to page 1, 2  Next

All times are UTC + 1 hour


Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Bing [Bot], Google [Bot], just do it, Okinawa Kiter and 21 guests


You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot post attachments in this forum

Search for:
Jump to:  
Powered by phpBB © 2000, 2002, 2005, 2007 phpBB Group