MRAA Launches Updated Strategic Roadmap

MRAA staff, board and strategic partners set updated priorities for the association’s work in serving North American dealerships

MINNEAPOLIS – The Marine Retailers Association of the Americas finalized a three-year strategic plan that seeks to further strengthen how the association fuels the success of the marine industry. Through expanded dealer training and educational programs and a focus on higher levels of industry engagement, MRAA’s plan puts an overarching emphasis on helping the industry deliver a world-class customer experience.

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The 2023-25 MRAA strategic roadmap resulted from collaborative efforts and a two-day meeting among MRAA staff, its board of directors, members of its Young Leaders Advisory Council, and its Strategic Partners. The group of nearly 50 people sifted through multiple MRAA member and non-member surveys and more than 45 individual, one-on-one dealer conversations; to establish a trio of MRAA priorities:

  1. Expand solutions that drive dealer success
  2. Engage more dealers and manufacturers in MRAA’s programs
  3. Promote marine retail strength through data, advocacy

“Over the course of the last 10 years, MRAA has built a comprehensive catalog of dealer training and educational solutions, including customized member benefits, free webinars and publications, 240-plus online courses, a robust Dealer Week conference and expo, and a revitalized Dealership Certification Program,” explains Matt Gruhn, MRAA President. “What we heard from our meeting participants, as well as the nearly 50 other dealer voices they brought to that meeting, was that today’s dealers need more focused training options, including position-specific training and credentialing, to help them strengthen their businesses, overcome the workforce challenges they face and ultimately deliver a better overall customer experience.”

While much of the strategic roadmap provided insights into tactical work that MRAA will focus on, such as building new education and training programs, creating retail data dashboards, and efforts to reduce industrywide Repair Event Cycle Times, the group also put a major focus on driving engagement levels with MRAA’s programs. Those efforts include promoting the benefits of Dealership Certification, both throughout the industry and to consumers; sharing the immense value of MRAA’s work on behalf of dealers and the industry; and becoming an even stronger dealer development option for manufacturers and suppliers.

To view the MRAA Strategic Plan, click here.

“What I love about this plan is not just that it perfectly mirrors MRAA’s reason for existence, but also that it was literally created by our dealers, boat builders, engine manufacturers and suppliers in an effort to help us continue to improve the boating industry,” says MRAA Board Chair, Jeff Strong, of Strong’s Marine. “We invite anyone out there who could use some help in strengthening their teams or their presence at the retail level — dealers, manufacturers and suppliers alike — to connect with the programs the MRAA team has to offer and change your business for the better.”

Participation in the MRAA strategic planning process included MRAA Strategic Partners Bennington Marine/Polaris, Boats Group, Brunswick Dealer Advantage, Correct Craft, Lightspeed, Malibu Boats, Inc., Smokercraft, Inc., Volvo Penta, Wells Fargo, Yamaha Marine Group, the National Marine Manufacturers Association and the Recreational Boating & Fishing Foundation. Dealer participation included representatives from Allen Harbor Marine, Boaters Exchange, Buckeye Marine, Cleveland Boat Center, Hagadone Marine Group, Hoffmaster’s Marina, Lakeview Marine, MarineMax, Mount Dora Boating Center, Inc., One Water Marine, Petzold’s Marine, Port Harbor Marine, Reed’s Marine, Strong’s Marine, Superior Boat Repair & Sales, and Taylor’s South Shore Marine.

About the Marine Retailers Association of the Americas

At the Marine Retailers Association of the Americas, we believe that for the marine industry to thrive, the retail organizations that interact with the boaters in their community must thrive. With that in mind, MRAA works to create a strong and healthy boating industry by uniting those retailers, providing them with opportunities for improvement and growth, and representing them with a powerful voice. For more information, visit or contact us at 763-315-8043.