Your Dealership and MRAA: We’re on This Journey Together!

MRAA is your pathway to success and provides the support you need to get there

While writing this blog to help you understand that the Marine Retailers Association of the Americas (MRAA) is passionate about advancing the business of boating, it triggered a mental memory of my cousin and me exploring a small creek. We spent that day walking the creekbank and fording it like scouts on a Lewis-and-Clark expedition, searching for a sea.

My meandering thoughts made me think of all the twists and turns creeks and rivers take on their journey to larger bodies of water. I thought about rivers and watersheds and growing up just 4 miles from where the Boone River feeds into the Des Moines River in Iowa. The Boone River is a tributary to the larger and longer Des Moines River, which flows into the Mississippi River, or the Great River. Ultimately, the Mighty Miss pours out into the Gulf of Mexico, which itself is part of the vast Atlantic Ocean.

Your dealership isn’t unlike these bodies of water. Let’s consider your business the Atlantic Ocean. Your Service Department could very well be the Mississippi. Your other departments, like F&I, Sales and Parts, contribute to your “flow” much like tributaries feed larger rivers. When they are working together and flowing, as they should, you typically get predictable results and know what to expect. However, during storms and times of drought, environmental concerns and other related issues, the entire system can suffer, and the streams and rivers struggle, which in turn hurts your store.

We understand that running a business is hard. There are so many internal (lack of communication, trust and process) and outside factors (lack of quality workforce, delays, soft market, etc.) that it can often feel like you’re swimming upstream instead of flowing freely like a swift current. But don’t worry. We believe you, on the front lines, must first be successful so that marine industry is successful.

Our mission is to fuel your success and to help drive a thriving marine industry. The MRAA is your guide, providing you with a pathway on your recreational boating business journey. By helping your tributaries effectively feed your larger waterways, we keep your business running smoothly to improve your journey to greatness (or the great ocean, to keep our analogy surging).

“Our team believes that for the marine industry to be successful, you, a marine retailer – a boat dealer on the front lines of our great industry – must be successful first,” says Matt Gruhn, MRAA President, in his recent MRAA membership video. “And as a marine retailer yourself, you should know that the MRAA exists for one reason and one reason only, and that is to support you in finding success for your business.”

This quote from Matt is not fluff but something he has shared numerous times across the country at dealer meetings, on stage at our annual Dealer Week Conference and Expo and in various other presentations and interviews. We exist to serve you with genuine care, respect and integrity. We do that by remembering who we are and what we do. The MRAA is for dealers by dealers and provides you with world-class education and resources. We also re-invest in your success and represent you in Washington.

The MRAA can play the role of tributary in your journey to greatness. Like a tributary, we can flow information into you to help your teams continue to feed your business. A recent advancement for the MRAA is Aimie (or AI for Marine Industry Education). Aimie can help your employees and your business because she has been trained using MRAA education and resources. MRAA Members can ask her to be their virtual guide.

we're on this journey together

I advise you to watch the following two MRAA videos to help you understand our commitment and desire to serve you. The first video is about MRAA Membership and Aimie. The second is a recent webinar recording that shares Aimie’s benefits and tips for getting the best search and content results.

  1. MRAA Membership Video
  2. MRAA Aimie Webinar

Finally, for all the natural-born explorers, the 7-week Dealership Certification program and Continuous Certification are for you. These MRAA programs provide you with resources, tools and guides (consultants) to refine your operations, employee engagement and customer experience while also helping you to stay energized and afloat on your long journey to success. Check out the videos below.

Need more information about MRAA Membership? Learn more.