The 10 gallon tank may be the gateway to the fish hobby, but it isn’t the destination.
Dan Engmark, president of Deep Sea, has a trade-in program that will help retailers get their customers into the larger aquatic hobby.
“If a customer buys a 10 gallon aquarium and registers it online, in six months we send that customer a coupon for a free 20 gallon tank,” Engmark said. “We do that because we want the customer to return that 10 gallon aquarium to the store they purchased it at and we want that store to give that new aquarium to a new customer. Then the store will sell double the amount of fish.
“The hobby isn’t about fish tanks, it’s about the fish, it’s about the animals that go inside the aquariums, and it’s not about the food, the light or the water treatment. If we don’t instill in people to keep fish or enter in the hobby, I think we are all in trouble.”
The program has been going strong for over a year and will continue as long as any store wants to participate, he said.
“Any store in the country can get our product,” Engmark said. “Any retailer store that wants to participate in the program can contact us and we will be happy to set them up and get them rolling.”
Engmark lends a hand in any way he can when it comes to the industry.
In May, Engmark received a call about helping a fish and, of course, jumped on the opportunity to.
“One of our accounts, Bruce at Aquatec down in Austin, Texas called me up one day,” Engmark said. “He said he had a favor to ask and sent a picture of a ginormous fish. What happened was, the darn thing was being shipped to somebody and had poked the bag it was in enough so that when the plane landed in Austin, it was dry.
“The wholesaler called Bruce and asked if he could help save this fish, so Bruce said yes and brought the fish in and it’s massive, and doesn’t fit in most of his aquariums. So Bruce asked us if we would gift him an aquarium so he could have a new store mascot and save this fish’s life, which of course we said yes. It’s a wild caught fish and we didn’t want the darn thing to die.”