Ultimate Guide to Gun Marketing, and Selling Guns

Ultimate Guide to Gun Marketing, and Selling Guns

In 1986, a little over 3 million guns were manufactured in the United States. However, if we fast-forward to 2021, that figure jumps to more than 13.8 million.

That goes to show that marketing has become essential for anyone in the firearms industry if they want their business to stand out.

Today, we will find out about the specifics that apply to the guns industry and how you can make the most of your firearms marketing strategy.

Related Post: The Right Way to Buy and Sell Firearms Online [Guide]

What Is Gun Marketing?

Basically, marketing is any action that a company uses to attract a group of people to view the products/services that they offer. Of course, the action, or message, must be engaging, especially if that message hopes to pique people’s interest in what that company is offering.

Unlike other industries, though, the firearms industry’s marketing poses some unique challenges and considerations due to the nature of the products being offered. Since these products are a very serious matter, consequences could be catastrophic if done incorrectly.

Unfortunately, whenever a gun is misused or violence occurs, society is quick to blame firearms dealers and manufacturers for reckless marketing, and targeting children.

This has also fueled the ongoing debate of U.S. gun control, and has ultimately led to a lot of online restrictions for gun retailers, including being blocked on search engines.

Related Post: Safe at Home: Navigating Firearms Safety with Children – Arms Directory

Gun Marketing: Digital Marketing Strategies

Gun Marketing: Digital Marketing Strategies
  1. Guns SEO
  2. Firearms Blog
  3. Gun Advertising
  4. Guns on Social Media
  5. Firearms Giveaways
  6. Guns Affiliate Marketing

Gun SEO

Gun SEO is a process of optimizing your firearms website so that you appear higher in search engine results.

This is arguably the best way to execute your firearms marketing strategy, since it is, more or less, free, and can help you gain huge amounts of online traffic and visibility.

Search engine optimization includes a lot of micro-processes, such as internal linking, meta descriptions, title tags, homepage SEO, image SEO, keyword research, writing content, and so on.

Firearms Blogs

Starting a blog about firearms is a great idea. You can use it to write gun reviews, guides, instructions, gear lists, and so forth.

Some benefits of blogging include:

  • Increasing website traffic
  • Building authenticity
  • Creating shareable content
  • Generating leads
  • Educating potential customers

The firearms niche has a big market, and many people are not only looking to purchase guns, but also to learn more about them. Keep in mind that if you want to sell firearms online, you need to have a Federal Firearms License (FFL).

Gun Advertising

Even though there aren’t any gun advertising laws that forbid manufacturers from promoting their products, gun ads are very rare.

Gun ads have been banned on social networks and TV channels, and search engines have also imposed strict rules when advertising firearms.

Google generally does not allow the promotion of any products that may cause harm, damage, or injury. So, for about twenty years, Google has not accepted any ads for firearms or ammunition.

In fact, Google even prohibits ads for devices that “appear to discharge a projectile at high velocity,” like paintball guns and BB guns. Furthermore, in 2012, the company banned weapons-related items from Google Shopping.

All this leaves no other choice for firearms businesses than to look for other, more targeted methods to promote and sell their products.

Guns on Social Media

As a brand, posting guns on social media is a tricky subject. In general, you need to pay attention to the wording of your posts. If they hint at selling a product, you should definitely rewrite them to avoid sounding promotional.

Your page could even get a temporary or permanent ban if Facebook or YouTube interprets your content as trying to sell or promote the sale of a firearm-related product.

For example, here is what Instagram’s branded content policies state:

Weapons, ammunition or explosives.
Branded content must not promote firearms (including firearms parts, ammunition, paintball guns, and BB guns), firearm silencers or suppressors, weapons (including pepper spray, non-culinary knives/blades/spears, tasers, nunchucks, batons, or weapons intended for self-defense), or fireworks or explosives.

This means that, unfortunately, you cannot use paid ads, since the risk of promoting firearms and related products is too big. If your ad gets denied, your business account could get shadow-banned.

This ban will last for an undetermined amount of time. The worst case scenario is the suspension of the account handling the page if your Meta ad’s account is shut down.

Ultimately, it is great for your firearms business to be active on social media like Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube. You just need to be careful, and avoid promoting firearm-related products, to not get yourself banned.

Instead, focus on your brand, share educational materials, like blog posts from your site, and client testimonials.

Firearms Giveaways

Everyone loves to win free stuff. Running a giveaway is not only a great way to begin a business, but it’s also a great way for an already established company to interact with their existing customers.

Gun Affiliate Marketing

Affiliate marketing is not uncommon in the gun industry. In fact, some big weapon manufacturers like SIG Sauer, Glock, and Smith & Wesson have their very own affiliate programs in place.

All you have to do to become part of an affiliate program is sign up to become a member. Then you receive access to personalized links. Now, each time someone clicks on your link and makes a purchase, you get paid.

It is entirely up to you how you promote the products – you can write reviews on your blog, make videos, and so on.

Perhaps the best part about affiliate marketing is that you can earn commissions, all while increasing your website traffic, satisfying the interest of your target audience, and enhancing your brand visibility.

Summary

Gun marketing features various strategies like SEO, social media, giveaways, and affiliates. What’s important is that you not only understand the pros and cons of each, along with what you need to be careful with, but also how to promote your firearms business without risking any penalties.

In any case, developing a good firearms marketing strategy is vital, especially if you intend to stand out from the hundreds of online gun businesses out there.

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