Set aside the snark and the time wasters posing as social media pundits and you’re left with actual people—real-world folks driven by positivity, possibility and edifying ideas. Anglers, perhaps more than most, prefer to cheer their friends’ accomplishments and pass along cool new ways to simply have fun and catch more fish.
Right from project launch, this same optimistic outlook spurred the development of the GOAT ToadZ, a radical new ElaZtech® surface bait built via fan interaction, ideation and plenty of inspiration. “It’s really been a labor of love among Z-Man’s vast network of fishing nuts,” notes Z-Man president Daniel Nussbaum. “We’re thrilled to say, sixteen months after inception—angler concepts, rough sketches, prototypes, on-water testing, plus more input and hardcore fishing—the GOAT ToadZ is fully fleshed out and ready to make a splash.”
Among Z-Man’s faithful social media friends—nearly half a million strong—the entire design process has proven to be a fun, engaging exercise, and a rare peek behind the bait-crafting curtain. Judging by fan reaction, excitement for that first surface explosion has reached a crescendo.
Z-Man’s Nussbaum, who spearheaded the GOAT ToadZ project, offered perspective on the bait’s unique evolution— from egg to tadpole to a fully-developed surface-kicking amphibian. “Typically, when a new product is released to the public, the first time you see or hear about it is the day you discover the bait hanging from the tackleshop aisle,” notes Nussbaum. “Or, if you’re lucky, you might hear about it through the grapevine, as the bait’s being developed.
“We wanted to turn traditional bait design on its head by allowing our fishing friends to virtually step into Z-Man laboratories and both watch and actively engage in the process,” he offered. “It’s been a fascinating, super rewarding exercise. We and our fans think the final version of this new ElaZtech surface bait is pretty exceptional.”
Among all the unique properties of ElaZtech, explains Nussbaum, the material’s buoyancy proved to be a perfect match for surface-fishing. “One of Z-Man’s most popular baits has been our Hard Leg FrogZ™. It’s been thirteen years since we released that bait—certainly among the most durable topwater toads ever built. Admittedly, anglers today have a lot of toads to choose from. But none of them offer all the advantages of ElaZtech. And we knew we could build a new design from scratch and give anglers something truly special—lively, versatile and incredibly durable on the hook.”
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