You’re probably sick of hearing about all the snow in northern states — it’s still snowing — but no matter where you’re at in the U.S. (with a few exceptions I choose to ignore) it’s not as summery as we’d like. Some have talked about pent-up, cabin fever-driven demand this season, but what is your dealership or marina doing to capitalize on everyone’s thirst for fun in the sun?
Service managers and riggers detest seasons that start like this, as lingering winter weather creates a crush of customers when the weather finally does warm up. It’s in everyone’s best interest to coax your customers out of their hibernation to get their boats ready, whether that means getting it out of storage, bringing it in for a once-over or getting a few supplies from the ship’s store.
While some remain skeptical of the benefits of social media, it is a valuable tool for getting your customers to think boating. You could share a fun photo from last season, advertise a pre-season service special or ask your customers what they’re most looking forward to this summer. Junky weather means you’ve got a captive audience, stuck inside with a laptop, phone or tablet in their hands.
Gordy’s Lakefront Marine in southern Wisconsin is celebrating ice out even though it’s still snowing, and telling its customers about specials in its Boat House restaurant.
Parks Marina in Iowa set up a live webcam to keep its customers up to date as summer approaches. It has also posted several photos from its presence at the local Men and Their Toys Show. Just visiting their Facebook page gets me excited to get outside and play!
There are infinite ways to connect to your customers and stoke their excitement. This very moment, when everyone is eager for summer, could be the most valuable time of the year to maximize the impact of your social media efforts.
Now, get to it — and think spring!