By now the industry is well aware that in order for a boat or yacht manufacturer to retain or seek membership in the National Marine Manufacturers Association, it must have all products “NMMA Certified” using American Boat & Yacht Council standards beginning with model year 2007. While this task may sound daunting, it is remarkable how many current NMMA member manufacturers have stepped up to the plate and not only secured their places in the association, but made a solid commitment to building a better, safer and more reliable product for consumers.
Out of the 202 non-certified members of NMMA’s Boat Manufacturer Division at the conclusion of model year 2006:
Only two uncertified manufacturers out of the 202-member BMD declined to participate in the NMMA Certification program.
Based on these numbers, it’s clear the industry supports NMMA Certification; it appreciates the value of certifying products to a stringent set of standards and is going the extra mile to ensure compliance. But what about consumers? Do they know about NMMA Certification? After all, product certification is an integral part of the industry’s ongoing Grow Boating Initiative.
The easy answer to this question is “yes,” and the good news is we’re already well on our way to making this a reality. Back in January, NMMA launched a certification marketing campaign to promote product certification to consumers. Advertisements touting NMMA Certification ran in several consumer boating magazines, some of which agreed to include the NMMA Certified logo alongside their boat tests and reviews.
In 2007, ongoing certification marketing efforts will ramp up even further, with plans to reach out to additional consumer boating publications and encourage them to include NMMA Certified logos with boat tests and reviews. Even Web sites are getting on board to help. The NMMA Boat/Yacht Certification logo and a description of the program will be prominently displayed as part of Boating Life magazine’s “Virtual Test Drive,” a new section of the publication’s Web site. Signage at the 2006/2007 NMMA-produced boat shows will also be greatly increased, drawing attention to certified manufacturer displays.
In an age where consumers demand higher quality products than ever before, NMMA Certification rises to meet that challenge. And in 2007 you can expect to see the program gain increased visibility in the mainstream consumer boating media.