Industry’s ‘Get On Board’ campaign signals success

Get On Board campaign launches
Get On Board is a public service initiative from Take Me Fishing and Discover Boating to raise awareness about the health and wellness benefits of fishing and boating while social distancing. The campaign invites people from all walks of life to gear up, get out and leave stress in their wake. Learn more at or and join the movement on social media using the hashtag #TheWaterIsOpen.

In under two months, a collaborative marketing campaign from Take Me Fishing and Discover Boating has reached an audience of more than 640 million.

Launched June 15, the Get On Board campaign is a joint effort between the Recreational Boating and Fishing Foundation (RBFF), Marine Retailers Association of the Americas (MRAA) and the National Marine Manufacturers Association (NMMA) to help more Americans experience the restorative health and wellness benefits of boating and fishing safely while social distancing. 

“While new boats are selling at an impressive level this summer, the real value of the campaign is the voice it’s giving our industry at a time we uniquely have the attention of our potential next generation customer,” said Ellen Bradley, senior vice president and chief brand officer for NMMA. “By coming together with RBFF and MRAA during this unique time, we’re able to share the benefits of the boating and fishing lifestyle in a more impactful way and better position our industry for the future.” 

An integrated campaign of digital advertising, public service announcements, social media and public relations, Get On Board took its inspiration from rising consumer interest in safe outdoor recreation amidst COVID-19. The same trend has contributed to record participation and sales for the boating and fishing industry this summer. 

“As Americans seek out ways to recreate responsibly, one in five people have become more interested in taking up fishing,” said Frank Peterson, president and CEO of RBFF. “Through Get On Board, we’ve created a powerful platform to make the joys of fishing and boating more relevant than ever for new audiences — and already, the numbers are showing success. Year over year, fishing license registrations are up around the country.” 

Highlights of the campaign’s success so far include:

  • An estimated 644 million impressions.
  • More than 15 million video views on YouTube.
  • More than 1,400 news media placements, including interviews with campaign spokesperson Dr. Sue Varma, a nationally recognized psychiatrist.
  • More than 1.4 million social media engagements across Take Me Fishing and Discover Boating’s social channels.
  • A public service announcement airing 5,778 times by more than 110 TV stations across the country.
  • More than 800 social media posts using the campaign hashtag #TheWaterIsOpen.
  • Social media influencers including @AmeliaKFarrar@ChrisGarafola@ReadySetJetSet@Hey_Ciara and @Girlof10000Lakes reaching a potential audience of more than 675,000 and generating more than 500,000 likes, comments, shares, views and clicks.
  • Record-breaking web traffic to the Take Me Fishing and Discover Boating sites this year has continued since the campaign’s launch with a 78% year-over-year increase in visitors.

To date, nearly 200 industry members have joined the campaign, which is open to all brands and leaders throughout boating and fishing. 

“We are off to an incredible start with sharing the Get On Board messaging, but we want to ensure that the entire industry unites behind this campaign to let consumers know that boating is a safe and enjoyable way to spend their family and recreation time,” says Matt Gruhn, MRAA president. “We hope to continue our industry’s momentum by engaging even more dealers, marinas and manufacturers in using the Get On Board assets and messaging.” 

Industry members are urged to help ensure that boating and fishing continue providing lifelines to health and wellness for Americans throughout the pandemic. Interested readers are encouraged to use the campaign hashtag #TheWaterIsOpen and access easy partner toolkits from Take Me Fishing and Discover Boating, where they can download free social media assets, website banner ads, videos and imagery.

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