At Aspen and Fort Lauderdale-based public relations agency Durée & Company, we have over 20 years of experience in utilizing public relations and marketing tactics. We know how to tell the right stories to attract potential investors, buyers, and clients, especially in the marine industry.
With our main office located in Fort Lauderdale, also known as the “yachting capital of the world” and the “Venice of America,” we are ideally situated in the center of the activity. From notable trade associations to the Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show, there are opportunities for everyone to be involved. We have leveraged these relationships and know what it takes to “reel in” publicity for marine clients. It starts with a well thought out marketing strategy.
Here are seven tips to steer your boat’s marketing strategy into ship shape:
- Maintain an Optimized Website and Invest in Key Words – Remember, content is king! The more information you have on your website, the higher you will rank on search engines such as Google, Yahoo and Bing – this is called organic search. Paid search is where it gets a little more complicated. You can easily run through SEO (search engine optimization) and SEM (search engine marketing) campaigns budgets whether it be $1,000 or $1,000,000 in one day if you don’t work with a professional. The keywords that you choose are based solely on your business, but remember, the most searched keywords are the most expensive ones! That’s where our expertise comes into play.
- Collect Leads – Whether you’re displaying your vessel at a boat show or in a showroom, it’s important to collect contact information for leads. You can utilize an iPad with apps such as iCapture or CamCard to capture visitors’ contact information. Ensure that you evaluate the leads you attained and categorize them so that you can determine your follow-up strategy. It’s important to stay in communication with those leads and send a thank you to all of those who visited your showroom or booth at a boat show. You can also use your follow up as an opportunity to share more information about your brand.
- E-mail Marketing – Organize the leads you collect into a list on Constant Contact or Mail Chimp so that you stay in communication with them via e-blasts. You can easily share pictures, testimonials, event information and any key takeaways about the brand in an e-blast. It’s also a great way to try to schedule onsite meetings with leads, brokers and media ahead of any shows you may participate in.
- Social Media– Social media plays a critical role in promoting your marine brand. Prior to a boat show, you can inform guests and consumers that you will be at the show by advertising your attendance through social media. Leading up to the event, share a detailed map of the show so that attendees can easily find your booth. Create a branded hashtag to use during the event so that supporters can follow along in real time. Invite influencers to come aboard the vessel so they can highlight their experience to their followers.
- Smart Branding – When guests board the boat or yacht, or visit the showroom, wow them with a unique branded item as a takeaway gift. It’s important to purchase promotional items that will speak to your target audience as well as reflect your industry. It’s also imperative that your marketing materials and brochures are up to date and align with your brand so that you stand out among competitors. Ensure you have enough marketing materials including brochures, giveaways and business cards to share with interested clients.
- Participate in Industry Shows – Industry trade shows are a great way to gain exposure for your marine brand from media, industry leaders, brokers and clients. Attending these shows can prove to be an effective lead-generating tactic. Meeting consumers face-to-face can also help a brand stand out from its competition. When deciding on the best show for your brand, it’s important to do the research and choose one that aligns with your company’s goals and mission statement. See what events your competitors are participating in and speak with businesses that participated in previous years to gather their takeaways. Those staffing the show should be a good representation of your brand. They should be enthusiastic and knowledgeable about the brand so they can engage with prospective leads.
- Hosting Events – Host an event on your boat or yacht that your guests will never forget. This allows potential leads to become familiar with the vessel. Curate an experience that is unique and experiential with a selective guest list, live music, and a fun “Instagrammable” moment. If you are exhibiting in a boat show, they may have on-site activations such as cocktail receptions, branded VIP areas and more that you can participate in for exposure. Additionally, there are many ways to get involved in the marine community outside of a show including joining broker associations, yacht clubs, sailing groups and more. These organizations are a great way to stay connected within the community and meet potential leads.
Do you need help developing a marketing plan for your vessel? Check out our Dynamo Diary or Instagram for more insight and #behindthescenes on #PRlife.
About Durée & Company
Durée & Company, Inc. is an award-winning, full-service public relations, marketing and special events firm founded in 1999. The firm has offices in Fort Lauderdale, Florida and Aspen, Colorado. Durée & Company serves the corporate, agency and nonprofit arenas for local, national and international clients. Services include public relations, social media, marketing, content development, advertising, special events, branding, radio promotions and more. Durée & Company clients include well-known names in business, fashion, hospitality, travel, wellness and CBD, marine & yacht, art and culture, nonprofit organizations, legal and professional services and real estate. Durée & Company is a member of PR Boutiques International™ (PRBI), an international network of boutique PR firms. To learn more, go to https://dureeandcompany.com/, visit Durée & Company on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/DureeCoPR/, Instagram at https://www.instagram.com/dureecopr Twitter at https://twitter.com/dureecopr or YouTube at https://www.youtube.com/user/DureeAndCompany, or call 954-723-9350.