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Recognizing the industry’s best

This month’s issue features Boating Industry Magazine’s Top 100 as we honor the best boat dealers in North America for the 13th time. This year’s Top 100 is stronger than we’ve ever seen in the history of the program. Total revenue for the 2017 Top 100 dealers and Hall of Fame topped $3 billion for the first time – up ...

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At The Helm: Participation in 20 group gathering provides unique industry insight

Each year, Boating Industry’s Top 100 Dealer Application includes a query about 20 group participation. Dealers are asked to explain the role they play within this unique learning community, which delivers best business practices, peer reviews of financial performance, and the opportunity to improve professionalism and profitability. American author, scientist, and statesman Benjamin Franklin first used the 20 group concept ...

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Seven essential sales and marketing components

You have a sales and marketing system in place today. The question is, is it as efficient and profitable as it could be? Whether you have a mishmash of various components and strategies that are producing sporadic and unpredictable results or you have a well-oiled system that churns out high-margin boat sales like clockwork, here are seven components that will ...

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At the Helm: MDCE attendance, education hone competitive edge

Listening to a drive time radio interview recently underscored the importance of anticipating the future and using that skill to foster marketplace advantage. Futurist Daniel Burrus’ accurate predictions date back to the early 1980s where he became the first and only futurist to accurately identify the 20 technologies that would become driving forces for business. His latest book, “The Anticipatory ...

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Practical and profitable 2018 marketing plans

One of the most profitable planning projects you can invest in is to create a yearly marketing plan. I’m not talking about a business school type plan that sits on the shelf and will make an MBA professor giddy, but rather a marketing plan that will be followed throughout the season and lead to larger more predictable profits. To help ...

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At the Helm: Charting the next course

A visit to Boating Industry’s archives recently reminded me of the significance of a recent deep-sea discovery, and its importance to a newly minted trade press editor who has a love of naval history. In mid-August, a team led by Paul G. Allen, the billionaire co-founder of Microsoft, announced that it had found unmistakable wreckage of the USS Indianapolis 18,000 ...

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At the Helm: Future focused

It seems we spend a lot of time in this industry worrying about young people – and with good reason.  Gen Xers and Millennials aren’t buying boats at rates comparable to the Baby Boomers or the Silent and World War II generations that came before them. They also aren’t choosing to work in the industry – leading to the workforce ...

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Super simple Facebook strategy

How’s your season going so far this year? I hope you’ve been delivering a ton of boats and have dozens and dozens of happy clients hitting the water as the summer is in full swing. During this time of year, it can be challenging at times to keep on top of your marketing. And if you don’t have a dedicated ...

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At the Helm: It’s all about product

More than anything else, it’s new product that pushes boat, engine and accessory sales.  Whether it’s a new, more efficient engine or a feature-loaded boat model, boaters are driven to pursue the latest, greatest thing. Without innovation, there’s no burning desire to buy. We know that – and we also know that new product information is one of the most ...

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Have you earned the right to win the sale?

In previous issues we’ve talked about the process your boat buyers go through, called the “Educational Spectrum,” and how you can take advantage of your competition’s lack of understanding by offering the “researchers and evaluators” the information they are searching for already. But as I wrote earlier, it could backfire on you if you don’t provide an exceptional experience. That ...

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