Garmin’s latest ad for opencaching.com is turning up the rhetoric. This might be a nice ad but I think Garmin is missing the point. Quality caches are the best way to attract users. Here is the ad as it appeared in the latest issue of Outside magazine.
Garmin continues to attack Groundspeak on the issue of price. I don’t think this is the best approach for Garmin. Have you ever heard the adage: “you get what you pay for”? I learned early on in my sales career that if you sell on price you will lose on price. Groundspeak does offer a free service to cachers. The $30/year premium service is a reasonable price to pay for the great value you receive. I’ve stated before that my premium membership at Groundspeak is the least expensive item in my annual geocaching budget. I spend more in batteries than I do on my premium membership.
Garmin continues to improve their listing service. The recent addition of saved searches is another challenge to value of geocaching.com’s premium service. The ability to run pocket queries has long been one advantage of the paid service at geocaching.com. Garmin is not letting up on their improvements. Every month sees a new feature added to the site making it more user friendly. This will continue to force Groundspeak to keep pace.
Garmin can have better ads. They can even have a user friendly site. They can do that and more but that is not what will motivate a cacher to use their site. The quality of opencaching.com as a site will be measured in the quantity and quality of caches listed there. Cross posting cache hides on opencaching.com and geocaching.com does little to help grow the site. The entrenched base of users at geocaching.com are not about to switch to opencaching.com because it offers 5000 cache downloads with one click. How does that help a cacher if they can already get 4990 of those caches on geocaching.com?
Groundspeak continues to offer the most comprehensive geocaching listing site in the world. Groundspeak has accrued tremendous brand loyalty in its 10 years of operation. Garmin’s only hope of attracting those loyal users is to offer more or better caches than can be found on geocaching.com. I don’t see that happening any time soon.
Photo courtesy of Brenda at SWOG.