From last week's Marine13, a couple of salient stories about focusing on PEOPLE not PRODUCT, which has been my own mantra for the past decade.
Thom Dammrich President NMMA
This advice is reinforced by Thom Dammrich, who was keynote speaker on the opening day of Marine13 and it should be one of the mottos we all live by.
To attract new customers and battle for share of hearts, minds and wallets, marketers should capture the joy and benefits of the boating lifestyle, the pure pleasure of getting on the water, not solely on horsepower and composites.
'What we're selling is fun!' said the charismatic and animated president of the NMMA, who outlined the successful Discover Boating program, new marketing initiatives and the importance of keeping up with consumers' media consumption, demographic trends and the major shifts in habits and ethnic communities, in the US and Australia.
'In all our marketing, all our videos, we are showing the joy, the looks on people’s faces when they’re on the water, relaxing and enjoying time with their families – not just boats on the water.'
Social media, an interactive website and responsive approach to consumers were also key, as is harnessing the power of the boating community. 'You need to encourage boaters to join the movement via Twitter, Pintrest, YouTube with the aim of getting more people in to boating through interaction,' said Thom.
Discover Boating - putting the fun back
The other important truth is: we are all in the same boat. The issues that may seem specific to one segment of the marine industry will eventually impact on all of us - from manufacturers, retailers, marina operators, brokers, right down to journalists in marine media!
It's only by working together and realising this that we can be a unified group which can achieve targets, implement initiatives and join forces to put the fun back in to boating.
2013 ASMEX, coming up on Queensland's Gold Coast 20-22 May, will echo this theme precisely, aiming to equip the exporter, manufacturer and those engaged in the superyacht sector with current information and insight into the economic realities and potential in global markets. The finalised program, including a guest speaker that is so high profile a confidentiality clause requires their anonymity at this stage, is now available at http://www.superyacht-australia.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/09/ASMEX-2013-Programme-for-speakers.pdf
It's not too late to register to attend this industry event, imperative for bolstering your business. The AIMEX/Superyacht Australia team is standing by to take enquiries. Don't miss out!
Also on the horizon, looming large and impressive, the 25th anniversary edition of Sanctuary Cove International Boat Show, with a host of international and national launches, some prestigious new sponsors that will add a touch of automotive clout to the program, and plenty for the whole family in terms of entertainment, skills training and ways to while away the days at one of the country's best marina villages.
The Marine Business World pavilion is filled with the latest and greatest accessories in the boating industry - Sanctuary Cove Boat Show
The team from Sail-World and MarineBusiness-World will be there in force, roaming the show as well as conducting interviews and meetings in our prime position in the massive Pavilion A that bears our branding - for the final year this year, so get in touch if you're keen to capititalise on this prominent method of taking your message to the visitors, media and trade at SCIBS.
Lots more this issue, so take your time and brush up on the stories that benefit your business, edify the industry and hopefully, entertain.