Mizmo Baits: An Interview With A Leader
An Interview With A Tube Bait Leader
By Tom Morrison
Morrison: Thanks for consenting to this interview Mr. Cox. Would you tell us please what your position is with Mizmo Baits and give us a brief personal history on your involvement with the sportfishing industry?
Mizmo\Troy Cox: Mizmo Bait Company began in 1998 through the efforts of four owner/officers, Jimmy Cox, Troy Gibson, Pamela Wood and myself. I have served as Vice President and CEO since that time. Most of my time is spent coordinating the Mizmo prostaff and attending sports shows all across the U.S. and Canada. I also fish the Wal-Mart FLW Tour as a co-angler. This serves as a great promotional tool, but also gives me more one-on-one time with the people that buy our products. This in-turn helps in the development of new products, as well as the marketing of our current products. Outside of my duties at Mizmo, I fish several local tournament trails and serve as the National Events Coordinator for the Fellowship Of Christian Anglers Society (F.O.C.A.S.).
Morrison: Tournament anglers, at least in southwestern Ontario, realize how important the 'tube' is to their fishing success, especially in the lower Great Lakes for smallmouth bass. Do you find a difference, presentation or otherwise, in the use of Mizmo's tubes between largemouth fishing in the south and our smallie fishery here in the near north?
Mizmo\Troy Cox: I hate to give away any secrets, but there is most definately a difference. Of course, we're talking about those times when the fishing is not exactly great. I've been on Lake Champlain before when I believe I could have caught smallies on an aluminum can with a hook in it. Since this is not always the case, I've learned little tricks that will get you more strikes. One thing I do differently when fishing for smallmouth as opposed to fishing for largemouth, is how I retrieve the tube. Fishing for largemouth, usually in heavy cover, I want the tube to have an erratic motion to trigger strikes. Smallmouth do not react to this type a presentation the way the largemouth do. It seems as though they prefer the tube to be dragged along the bottom as it would if it were being moved by natural currents.
Morrison: Have you noticed any particular colour preference(s) requested by anglers in Ontario as compared to those used by the southern tournament angler?
Mizmo\Troy Cox: The watermelon colours (or colors as we say down here) seem to be the most popular in the entire Great Lakes region. In the south, watermelons are extremely popular, but black with red and black with blue are probably the two hottest colors year-round. Of course Jim Estabrooke proved that the black colours work in Canada too, by winning the Chevy/Merc Classic a couple of years ago on a black tube.
Morrison: Mizmo tubes are becoming the standard by which all others are measured. Is there something that sets you apart from the others in regards to colours, size, shape or construction?
Mizmo\Troy Cox: Really, it's all of the above. Mizmo has worked on a production process that allows us to make tube for less than most of our competitors. Instead of putting those savings in our own pockets, we put them back into the bait in the form of more expensive plastic, better colouring and more glitter than our competition.
Morrison: How have you found the Canadian market in respects to sales and interest with Mizmo?
Mizmo\Troy Cox: The Canada market is great with respect to volume and timing. The boost that the overall numbers of Mizmo tubes sold in Canada provides our company is magnified because of when this boost hits. By May in the south, most of our sales are starting to level off because the peak fishing is about over. This is about the time many northern stores start stocking up in preparation for the opening of the smallmouth seasons. Our market share in Canada continues to grow and we expect this trend to continue as the word gets around that Mizmo has the best tube on the market.
Morrison: The new 2003 product line looks great, especially the double-dips or two-tone tubes. Where do you go from here? Are there new baits in the works for Mizmo?
Mizmo\Troy Cox: All of us at Mizmo understand the importance of developing new products and our prostaff plays a big role in htis process. They give us ideas on new designs and ways to improve existing lines. We do have a few prototypes developed for the 2004 season, but we will let our prostaffers use them and give us some feedback before the final product is available to the public.
Morrison: Thanks for doing this interview Troy. The tube is 'the bait' for many bass tournament competitors here in Ontario, central and southwestern. I think will give them further insight as to how they are selected or made and what it takes to get them into the tournament anglers tackle bags.
Mizmo\Troy Cox: I appreciate this opportunity. Mizmo is always open to share our company and SOME of our secrets with the public. We feel like if we can help people become better anglers, they will enjoy the sport more and in-turn go fishing more. I have a dealer show coming up in Toronto next month and plan on taking a day off and enjoying of some of that great Canadian smallmouth action I keep hearing about. Thank you.