March 2011

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A Division of the National Sporting Goods Association



Last October, the Mayo Clinic Sports Medicine Center hosted "Ice Hockey Summit: Action on Concussion." The event brought together scientists, trainers, coaches, officials and manufacturers from around the world.  Click here to view a video produced at the event.  It does an excellent job of summarizing many of the takeaways from the Summit. Please invest the time to view the video. You will find the content relevant to all sports. 

Smaller is Becoming Better  

Convenience has always been one of the strategic advantages of hockey dealers, and it looks like the big-box retailers are getting the message. A number of these large retailers, like Walmart, Best Buy, Office Depot and Home Depot are slowing their growth of big stores, instead choosing to open stores under 40,000 square feet.


Their approach is to stock the stores with their high volume sales items, while decreasing overall product selection. Smaller stores mean more convenience and faster checkouts for consumers, which is at the center of what Herb Sorensen will discuss at the upcoming 2011 NSGA Management Conference & Team Dealer Summit.

More Ways to Promote Your Business Locally

In the last issue of The HockeyVoice, we discussed the value of using Google Places to inexpensively build traffic to your store. Another excellent way to build traffic to your store is to submit your website listing to local directories. There are close to 100 local directories that may be accessed on the Internet.  Since the listings are free, it makes sense to be listed in every one of them. 

To save time creating listings in all of the directories, start with a Universal Business Listing (UBL) . For a small fee, you can list on multiple search engines.  EmarketingMatador  is an excellent blog about the directories. It states what may be the obvious - that people under 40 no longer use the Yellow Pages. They prefer the Internet. Take advantage of this by getting listed today!


Is Your Website Performing at its Maximum Effectiveness?

It is an accepted fact that websites are always a work in progress.  So it's valuable to get objective evaluations about your site on a regular basis. Go to  and check out your website for free. 

Member Profile: Michael Benoit, Total Hockey

total hockey

HDA staff members recently had the opportunity to visit with Michael Benoit, owner of Total Hockey, at one of his stores located in Glenview, IL.  Benoit is one of the most successful retailers in hockey, and he also serves as a member of the Hockey Dealers Association Advisory Committee.


In a conversation that spanned numerous subjects, Benoit, much like other hockey retailers with whom we have spoken, specifically mentioned that hiring personnel continues to be one of his greatest challenges. His preference is to hire employees with retail experience, but they don't necessarily need to have hockey experience. If they don't, Benoit said it is easier to assimilate these employees into the culture of his stores.


In addition, he mentioned that new manufacturers rarely contact him. Since sales agents have a strong preference for established brands, these new manufacturers don't often get representation.



Lastly, Benoit is a believer in social media, and has successfully integrated it into his promotional efforts. One example is a promotion he created to encourage his customers to photograph the Total Hockey logo in unusual places, but the catch was they had to pick up the logo at the store, another opportunity to build traffic and connections with his customers. The creativity exhibited by his customers was entertaining, and helped solidify the relationships generated by the company.  To learn more, click here.




Not a Member Yet?

Join your fellow hockey dealers and manufacturers today.   We are creating a community of people with similar challenges, and great ideas, which will help everyone become more profitable.   



Dan Signature

                          Chuck Signature
Dan Kasen                                    Chuck Suritz                 



In This Issue
Smaller is Becoming Better
More Ways to Promote Your Business Locally
Is Your Website Performing at its Maximum Effectiveness?
Member Profile
Not a Member Yet?

HDA Welcomes its

Newest Members 

Allen Americans, 

Allen, Texas

Center Ice Inc.

H A Zwicker

Manhattan Hockey LLC, 

New York, New York

47th Annual 
National Sporting
Goods Association
13th Annual Team Dealer Summit 



May 1 - 4, 2011



Loews Ventana
Tucson, AZ

Register today

Click Here for more info
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