If you’ve been paying attention to the many industry sources of advice, you know that your dealership, boatyard or marina needs to be more than just a point of sale to build lasting customer loyalty. Your business needs to be a destination, a trusted place for advice, an entertaining place to visit and a source of knowledge for its customers.
For the good of your customers, your business and the industry, your marine business also needs to address the issue of safety. Keeping your customers safe — as well as their friends and family — should be a top priority. Aside from that vital necessity, tackling the issue in some way is an opportunity for your business to prove it is knowledgeable and compassionate.
In the March 2014 issue of Boating Industry, Liz Keener’s “Crafting a Marketing Plan” provides an excellent summary of ways to tackle your marketing and access free marketing content from many sources, including Discover Boating. The same organization provides free boater education and safety resources there for the taking. Regional, state and local organizations typically provide similar resources free of charge.
If your business isn’t currently in the business of talking safety, think of how and when customers interact with your staff and find multiple opportunities to have “the talk.” Selling a major unit is an excellent time to cover some basics as part of the delivery process.
Addressing safety issues during service or storage also makes sense, and many dealerships and marinas partner with agencies to provide boating safety classes. Safety is the reason, but it’s also a chance to get more people through your front door.
Establishing customer loyalty isn’t easy, and it takes time. Truly looking out for the safety of your customer base is free, and few things you can do are more powerful.
For some basics on boating safety you can share, visit Discover Boating’s Boater Education page at http://www.discoverboating.com/beginner/safety/tips.aspx — and make sure your customers do the same.