Rethink Your Target Market at MDCE 2014
Wednesday, October 1, 2014
Posted by: Lindsey Johnson
demographics aren’t just starting to shift; they already have. If marine
dealerships want to capitalize on the changing faces of today’s market, they
need real-world, implementable strategies for reaching these new prospects in a
way that resonates with their individual needs, wants and desires.
the 2014 Marine Dealer Conference & Expo, taking place Nov. 16-19 in
Orlando, Fla., bestselling author and marketing expert Kelly McDonald will help
MDCE attendees rethink
their target customer, learn new rules for connecting with people of different
ages, races, genders, ethnicities and sexual orientations, and develop
strategies for attracting these prospects to their dealerships.
In her MDCE session, "How to Market to Those Not Like You,” McDonald will
help dealers discover ways of appealing to new markets of potential buyers and
ultimately selling them more boats.
Attendees will walk away from McDonald’s session with marketing
tactics that are proven to drive sales and provide a much-sought-after competitive
edge in the current marine retail marketplace. The session
takes place Wednesday, Nov. 19 from 10:30 to 11:45 a.m. ET as part of MDCE’s
"The changes in U.S. demographics suggest that the boating business
won’t grow unless we learn how to reach beyond our current customer base,”
explains Liz Walz, director of education for the Marine Retailers Association
of the Americas, which produces the annual event in partnership with Boating Industry. "While our traditional
markets remain important, it’s critical that we learn how to share the boating
lifestyle with new prospects who seek the benefits it provides, such as family
time and bonding experiences. Kelly can help dealers develop marketing
strategies to appeal to new markets and bring them into the boating fold,
hopefully as lifelong devotees and customers.”
Each of the 2014 MDCE educational tracks — Sales, Marketing, Leadership
and Service Plus — features five sessions. In addition to McDonald’s advice on adapting
to and thriving among today’s changing customer demographics, the Marketing
Track includes sessions that provide insight into increasing SEO through social
media, filling your online marketing holes, developing an unbeatable marketing
plan, and exploring the next wave of digital marketing tools and trends, among
"The retail customer is undergoing drastic changes, and it behooves marine
dealers to adjust their marketing plans accordingly,” says Boating Industry editor-in-chief Jonathan Sweet. "Kelly is an
expert in this arena, and she brings to MDCE a host of innovative ideas to
attract new prospects and convert them into boaters. For anyone looking to grow
their business, this is a must-attend session.”
The 2014 MDCE will offer 30 educational sessions in all, the most the
event has ever offered, including seven Pre-Conference Workshops. The
conference has traditionally included three educational tracks, but in 2014, it
has expanded to four tracks: Leadership, Sales, Marketing and Service Plus. A
Closing Keynote address also has been added this year.
The MDCE is scheduled for Nov. 16-19 at the Orange County Convention
Center in Orlando, Fla. It has attracted an increasing
number of dealers every year since 2007. In 2013, MDCE featured double-digit
growth in dealer attendance, for a total of 615 marine retail professionals.
MRAA’s goal is to grow the event to more than 1,000 dealer attendees. To learn
more, visit MRAA.com/MDCE.
About the Marine
Dealer Conference & Expo
The Marine Dealer Conference & Expo
is the Marine Retailers Association of the Americas’ annual conference and
member meeting. As the marine industry’s only dealer-specific educational
conference, the MDCE offers an in-depth lineup of educational topics, a
full-featured expo hall and a series of fixed networking opportunities, all of
which are designed to help marine dealers connect with and learn from others
who can foster their success. The MDCE is co-produced by MRAA and Boating Industry, and it features
Pre-Conference Workshops, Opening and Closing keynote presentations, four
tracks of educational content and 30 sessions in all. It will be held Nov.
16-19 at the Orange County Convention Center and Rosen Centre Hotel in Orlando,
Fla. For more information, visit MRAA.com/MDCE.