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Editor’s Choice 2017: Hampton Watercraft & Marine

By Brianna Liestman

Hampton Watercraft & Marine
Hampton Bays, N.Y.

Hampton Watercraft & Marine is consistently dedicated to improvement, whether it is upgrading its facilities, updating its marketing using innovative tools, or showing its employees how much their input is appreciated.

In 2016, Hampton Watercraft & Marine purchased and opened its third facility in Eastport, N.Y., a five-acre on-water facility with 100 slips and equipment to haul boats up to 45 feet. The marina is a full-service facility 20 miles west of its Hampton Bays marina.

“Having a second on-water location will not only make it easier for our service department to service boats, take them out on bay-tests after the work was completed, and deliver boats by water, but it allows us to break into the Westhampton/Remsenberg area of dockage and service customers that we previously were not able to reach,” says Anthony Villareale, president/founder of Hampton Watercraft and Marine.

Hampton Watercraft & Marine posts daily on Facebook.

Immediately after moving into the new facility, the team at Hampton took on major renovations, particularly to the office and shop spaces. The dealership plans to make other improvements, such as dredging to allow for large boats to access and dock at the marina, redoing bulkheads and floating docks, and adding more docks to the marina.

The new location will also help Hampton Watercraft & Marine to improve its already impressive marketing portfolio with more events. The dealership plans to rotate events each week between its two marinas to allow customers from all over Long Island to attend.

The dealership’s marketing strategy relies on a strong web presence, particularly on social media. Hampton Watercraft & Marine posts daily on Facebook, finding unique ways to engage with customers or share their customers’ stories. This includes specific MasterCraft pages on Facebook and Instagram to gear specific content toward water sports enthusiasts.

“While we try and grow our water sports reputation with MasterCraft Boats we felt that it was important to have the social media pages to follow it,” says Villareale. “We make sure to post photos of our happy customers who are using their boats as well as useful tips for owning and operating a MasterCraft as well as any new product information.”

Social media is used to promote upcoming events, boat shows, and other specials and deals. The dealership is sure to post regular photos of events and other happenings at the dealership, as well as customer photos that Hampton Watercraft & Marine encourages customers to tag themselves in.

“Through Facebook, we are able to market our brand, products, services, events and promotions. We are more than just a dealer; we are a part of the community,” says Villareale. “Hampton Watercraft and Marine’s goal is to create a lifestyle. Our customers aren’t just buying a boat they are joining our family and our lifestyle. By providing exciting content and expanding our digital presence, we are welcoming our customers and leads into our family in an even more intimate way than before.”

In addition to opening a new location and continuing to build its digital marketing, Hampton Watercraft & Marine implemented a company-wide best practice to “break down the walls and open the lines of communication” between employees and management. To do this, the dealership began hosting required monthly meetings for all employees, providing free lunch and discussing topics such as facility improvements, company morale and how to make Hampton Watercraft & Marine a better workplace. Employees are also recognized for their hard work, completed trainings, awards, customer comments and personal achievements.

“These meetings have been a great way to openly communicate in a stress-free way, we encourage everyone to let us know how they are feeling and how we can change to make it a better working environment,” says Villareale.

The company also has monthly office staff meetings where the office employees come together to discuss work projects, procedural issues and successes, and whether or not anyone needs assistance with a project.

“These smaller meetings have become helpful when we need to bounce ideas off each other, getting input on what is working and what might need to change and how we can make the office the best that it can be,” says Villareale.

All of this builds on Hampton Watercraft & Marine’s mission to provide 100 percent employee satisfaction. The dealership allowed employees to bring their dogs to work, which decreases workplace stress, increases productivity and creativity, and gives customers a furry friends to greet them.

“Hampton Watercraft & Marine is always concerned about our employee’s well-being,” says Villareale. “Hampton Watercraft & Marine values all of our employees, and understands that without them the company would not be where it is today.”

 

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