Silence is Golden, But Not When It Comes to Silencers


On Black Friday, several stores of outdoor sports outfitter Cabela’s gave away guns. And have you heard the one about the gun club offering photos with Santa and ammo?

Guns, always popular in the US, have become even more so in a slumping, anxious economy. No wonder, as a new report exposes, a New York City-based capital management form has been buying up as many gun brands as it can get its hands on.

The gun-loving conglomerate, Freedom Group, now sells more than 1.2 million guns a year, notching $40 billion in yearly revenue. (That’s more than Coca-Cola, by the way.)

Benefitting from the rise in gun sales are the gun accessories industry. But one such brand faces a huge uphill marketing challenge, burdened with severely tight regulations, even for the gun industry. The brand’s answer? An education campaign called “Silencers are Legal.”[more]

The Silencers are Legal
 campaign aims to inform as many consumers as possible that “Yes, silencers are legal in beautiful, constitution-upholding states, just not in Minnesota.”

For starters, this is something that many people probably do not actually know. While it’s understandable that one would assume a silencer was illegal based on general logic about its applications, it turns out the device is legal in almost every state. (See above.) Indeed, as the site announces: “Over 27,000 silencers a year are purchased by civilians, but most U.S. citizens don’t know that silencers are legal.”

But buying a silencer is also not as simple as buying, say, a, AR-15 semi-automatic assault rifle or an extended 33-round magazine for a Glock. There is paperwork. The site’s FAQ section takes users through the ins and outs of silencer ownership including state-to-state transport and the “tax stamp.”

The site also serves as an advocacy vehicle, teaching visitors that not only is owning a silencer your right under the Second Amendment of the Constitution of the United States of America, but also how to contact their respective Congressional representative “to tell them you would like the laws to change.”

The site is a project of Silencerco,  a Utah brand founded in 2008 “with the intent to create the best silencers by thinking outside the box and by solving problems in unconventional ways.” Silencerco’s first product was a silencer called the 22Sparrow, which won the brand great dealer attention.

The Silencers are Legal marketing push is just another marketing angle for Silencerco, which has already cornered social media with a Twitter feed and a YouTube channel that demonstrates a little humor with programs like “How Loud Is It?” The latest episode compared “a SS 22Sparrow Suppressor with a slap in the face.”

The brand now offers more than one silencer, including the Osprey. And while the brand’s core product may seem wildly different from most consumer offerings, the challenges facing the brand (educating consumers) are exactly the same.