There are bad ideas, and there are really bad ideas. Yeti coolers cutting ties with the NRA is one of the latter.
On Sunday, Yeti decided they would no longer sell their products to the NRA. According to the NRA, Yeti offered no reason why this move happened.
From The NRA Foundation:
“Suddenly, without prior notice, YETI has declined to do business with The NRA Foundation saying they no longer wish to be an NRA vendor, and refused to say why. They will only say they will no longer sell products to The NRA Foundation. That certainly isn’t sportsmanlike. In fact, YETI should be ashamed. They have declined to continue helping America’s young people enjoy outdoor recreational activities. These activities enable them to appreciate America and enjoy our natural resources with wholesome and healthy outdoor recreational and educational programs.”
I can’t begin to tell you how bad of a move this is for Yeti, and I’m surprised Yeti didn’t throw the idea — as well as the man or woman who had it — out of the boardroom the moment it was brought up.
Yeti is what’s known as a lifestyle brand. People pay exorbitant amounts of money for their products because having a Yeti cup not only fits in with their lifestyle, but it says something about them. Something along the lines of “I lead a more rugged lifestyle and I need a product that can keep up with me.”
The fact here is that people who buy Yeti products tend to be outdoor types. Hunters, fisherman, sportsman, construction workers, etc. The punchline is that Yeti coolers were primarily bought by people who tend to appreciate a middle American lifestyle, and middle America loves guns.
The punchline to this bad joke of a decision is that by rejecting the NRA, Yeti essentially turned its nose up to the idea of the gun rights the NRA heavily promotes and defends. Many in middle America tend to look at the NRA as a heavily defended wall that keeps the gun control wolves in the hills.
And Yeti, without rhyme or reason, turned its back on it. That’s not going to sit well with Americans.
Gun control is a losing issue for anyone who gets too close to it. Yes, there are those who would be so absurd as to strip all gun rights away from the populace thinking it will solve our problems — you can ask London how well that’s working — but for the most part, America wants to keep its gun rights right where they are. This was Yeti’s customer base.
Keyword “was.” Now it’s probably Rtic Cooler’s, as their marketing team seems to fully understand who their customers are, and what they like. Also, their Twitter banner is just better, but I digress.
In response to Yeti’s decision to toss it and leave it, Rtic pulled up quick to retrieve it and made it a point to let their customers know that they’re not pushing away their values by posting a picture of the 2nd Amendment on their Facebook page.
We’ll keep an eye out on how the sales are affected, but in the meantime, enjoy your new Rtic coolers, everyone.