Tips On Promoting Your Stallion
 
Many stallion owners have a belief that just because their stallion exists he will draw breedings. Kind of a "If I own him they will come" type attitude.What often happens is you breed him to your own mares and maybe a few down the road and your stallion never reaches his full potential as a 
producer. 
 
Before we go too much further in elaboration on the means to promote your stallion, let's qualify a few things. 
 
1) Is he stallion material, or just an unaltered male? 
2) Does his pedigree show production records that indicates prepotency in  his lineage? 
3) Does he GAIT naturally, and has he proven to produce gait? 
 
If you can't answer YES to the above questions, you should reconsider whether you should keep him as a stallion, little alone promote him! 
 
One of the first things to do in promoting a stallion is to KNOW and be able to show the pedigree of your stallion. Reputable pedigree services are often available to draw up a pedigree with a six generation background check. It is important to know not only what your stallion has done, but the 
records of his ancestors back at least 3 generations for an advertising campaign. 
 
It is vital to be realistic and competitive in setting the stud fee. You need to set your fee based on what your stallion is worth, not what someone else is charging. It is better to set a fee that is reasonable and comparable to stallions of similar type, show record, production record and pedigree, than to set the fee too high or too low.  You also want to decide if you will stand your stallion to mares outside his registered breed.  You should assess the quality of mares and not reject them for registration or lack there of, but for the standards you wish to produce in his progeny. 
 
Advertising is an important aspect of promoting a stallion. Everyone knows this, but how many stallion owners actually budget monies each year to promote their Stud? Ads with a photograph will be more likely to get attention than plain text ads.  Printed brochures, magazine ads and show 
pamphlets are all methods of keeping your stallion in the publics eye, but can be costly.  You should use as many types as you can and still maintain your budget. Internet advertising is often very cost effective. Unlike the printed media it is very easily updated and can be used in conjunction with 
the printed media to elaborate on your stallions qualities just by putting the URL in any printed ads you run. 
 
You MUST have a clear, flattering photo of your stallion to show his good qualities. It is best if the photo has a muted background, even if the horse is in motion. You don't want prospective customers distracted by the background, you want them to focus on your stallion, then pick up the 
phone, or click the mouse for further information. Keep your description brief as can be and still capture the interest of those you feel who are the most likely to wish to use your stallion for breeding. Keep your verbiage simple and professional and to the point. The stallion should be groomed, clipped and in a show halter or in show tack. Any handler in the photo should be neatly and attractively dressed, but when possible in halter shots, have the stallion the only image in the photo. 
 
The most important aspect of promotion is a pregnant mare and live foal, have a clear definition of your Live Foal Guarantee available to prospective mare owner. If you are capable of AI any additional fees should be posted in the ad. Make sure you have made arrangements for collection 
capabilities BEFORE you run the advertisement. You should be able to answer questions as to fees they can expect for shipping and collection on your end and be able to give them examples of costs others have had for fees on the receiving end. For mares brought to your facility for breeding, 
you need to have set mare care fees with an explanation of the care provided. 
 
Work closely with your vet, who should be skilled in pre-breeding exams, cultures and pregnancy tests. You want mare owners to feel confident  that the mare IS in foal when she is shipped home and has every reasonable chance of carrying the foal to term! 
 
Promotion of a stallion is an ongoing endeavor, but if you can't get mares settled, all the advertising in the world won't make your program successful!
 
 

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