Seatrial poem by Karen Maeby

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Hi Everyone! So since it’s poetry month, I wanted to share a poem that I wrote about going out on my first seatrial with the guys at work on 4/4/17. This is only the rough draft….

 

SEATRIAL 4.4.17 by Karen Maeby

PREFACE

I stepped onto the rocking dock
caused by wind gusts. I carefully watched
as they backed the boat into the water.

I’m on board now–it’s time to go.

I

Riding against the wind
with my eyes closed.
Going so fast that I cannot see
where we’re going, where I’m going.
A rush–fear enters–but exits within
As the wind blew my hair,
And I took in what I was supposed to.
Fear suppressed, bravery fed me as I hold on.
This is what my life will become
The day after tomorrow.

II

The smell of fish overbearing in my nostrils–
I am happy to have smelt it,
It’s been too long.

We’re close to my favorite place,
and in the middle of nowhere
where thoughts purely just do not exist.

Nothing but poetry remains
in my soul, there are words…and so many..
It felt like a cleansing that needed to happen.

III

Before the solitude existed any longer,
we turned around to go back to life.
And in the instant, we fired up the engine,
Getting high on plane–40,000RPM–
The wind was on our side and we were gliding.

A thought entered my mind:
How does having the wind on your side
Make you a great Captain?
Don’t you need to have all kinds of challenges
To make you the experienced one
To be able to tough it out, fight,
And come out better in the end?

CONCLUSION

Life is where the compass takes you.
Spin the ole schoolhouse globe, point,
and head there. See what happens.

Education by experience is well worth it.  

 

 

NOTE: If you are interested in reading more of my poetry, I have just recently put together a poetry collection of 200+ poems from two of my earlier books that I published a while ago. CLICK HERE to go to Amazon to purchase! It’s an eBook right now but will eventually be a paperback once I figure out how to do that… another day… Thank you! 

What is Boat Show Girl’s future?

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I’m at a serious crossroads with life, with Boat Show Girl, with my many many interests, my love for this industry, my desire to help this industry become successful and an inch away from some serious burn out.

In another month or two, depending on what happens, I will be leaving my job in this industry. The initial plan is to really bring Boat Show Girl to fruition, but I am at a loss of what to do as far as that goes. Do I fear that I won’t succeed in this, because I am doing this without a back up plan — or do I stick it out? Or, do I back away and just get another job while I try to muddle through making something of myself while working for others… once again.

First and foremost, I want to be a writer of every kind. I want to make money at it. 

Secondly, if I’m going to be in the marine industry, BOAT SHOW GIRL really wants to help push the education part and getting future employees in the door. The THIRD thing that Boat Show Girl wants to do is help DIVERSITY bring everything together for more sales as it should be… and helping make everything come full circle when the times are changing.

FOURTH: I have such a DIVERSE resume. I have been management, worked in retail, do visual merchandising, do computer work, admin assistant, marketing/design, writing, eBay sales, worked with parts and service, and have various other skills. I have helped businesses by contract work, I’ve also helped set up a business.

FIFTH: I have a desire to do so many different things. There are things on my dreams list such as getting more technical where I can talk about it at shows, being out on the water, eventually get my captain’s license, maybe teach some classes, have my own booth, help at boat shows or local events as BSG, talk to companies and be something for them, and so on. But I also have dreams I haven’t even thought about yet. I want to do a lot. I want to experience as much as I can. And ultimately, have a sincere purpose for BSG at the boat shows.

SIXTH: In my spare time, the other half of my heart belongs to the ARTS. I do theatre work, part of the film society, and I write all kinds of things. I also do photography, sketching/painting, arts and crafts. I love reading, history, animals, traveling and so much more.

THIS IS WHERE YOU COME IN. 

Boat Show Girl is looking for CONTRACT work that fits mostly in the marine industry but if you have anything else for me, please let me know. Just pass it around. I am in Gulfport FL – but will travel around Tampa Bay and would love to telecommunicate as far south Florida as possible. I’m not opposed to dreaming it up in Key West, either.

All I want is enough work to keep me busy and money coming in. I would love any opportunity and I appreciate anything or any advice you can give me.

Thank you,

Karen Maeby the Boat Show Girl

Miami International Boat Show 2017

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I pretty much lost Thursday as a day to be at the show, so I completely made up for it by having such a blast on Friday.

My friend, Graham, that owns a marine biz in Canada came and picked me up and we parked by Bayshore. I remembered that place from my very first boat show which was Miami five years ago. We stood in line for the water taxi to take us to the main place of action. THIS was our water taxi and the view. Un.Real. {Huge yacht}

  
  A very happy me!

I hit the accessories tent first to see one of the guys I work with. He was there with LiveWireTackle. They revealed their new product–lure corks.

Next I got to see my pal with OliverBoat. I had been talking to him for quite some time and finally met him. He is looking for dealers, so if you’re interested, contact him!

After quickly walking around and looking at what there was to see, I slowed down and took time to look. I have to explain that since all things creative such as: marketing, art, visual merchandising from my retail years, and literature are a big part of my life—looking at the creative stuff is something I’m always going to do. I looked at a lot of the company’s visual displays and here are a few of my favorites:

 SeaRay

 Striper

 GradyWhite

 Mercury w/ their new campaign ‘Go Boldly’

 Mako

 Kohler ‘Always present never noticed’ — that was just poetic.

But, I never noticed magic and love until I saw Seven Marine’s booth. They are my favorite by far.

There was a quote up on the screen that said, “The moment you want to slow down is the moment you want to accelerate.” Wow. I know they’re talking about engines and speed on a boat, but POETRY MOMENT with a lightbulb! It’s totally about LIFE too because… water IS life, and when you conclude that, the moment you want to give up…is the moment you should continue because you are that much closer to the dream.

Next: “If you can dream it, you can do it!” – quote as pictured.

I love Seven Marine simply for the poetic touch they add to their dreamy products.

Before I left work on Friday I came across ShipShapeTVs newest project and watched a few videos of it. I found the boat out front of the tents. It is called Fish Taco.

This is a pano shot of everything on the water:

I got to meet Rusty from World of Boating — finally — and we had a good chat! Then, as we headed back on a much smaller more intimate water taxi that night, it ended up Rusty was sitting right behind us so we got to chat more!

I saw our Monterey Rep and talked to him for a bit. I unfortunately didn’t get to see anyone else or go to the other site. I wish Thursday wasn’t such a bust. I really need more than just one day at this show. If I go next year–or prepare for Lauderdale–I’m going to have to do some things differently.

This is my write up so far. I’ve seen so much in the last few days that I wanted to at least recollect on what’s most important then go back and reflect on details, especially after I’ve looked through the boat lit that I brought back with me.

My experience this year was different than last year — best memory I’m taking home with me would be actually meeting several people at the show and then the water taxi ride. (Shameful–I haven’t been on a boat in ages and I work in the industry.) And this show is completely different than 5 years ago when I went to Miami for the first time. It’s unbelievable how much closer I am to getting BoatShowGirl really out there, and it all started with falling in love with boat shows. Who knew.

EDIT:

Oops. Forgot some important things. LOTS and LOTS of people were at the show. The line for busses and water taxis were NOT as bad as last year, so it seems they did improve that. Instead, all of the people were in line at the food stands and it took a while to get food. Bathrooms were not bad with lines–that seemed controlled. Overall, it seemed so much better organized than last year and truthfully I didn’t really have any complaints from last year.. even though I noticed a few things that could have been improved.

The Theatrical Art of Boat Shows

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For my BoatShowGirl readers, there’s one thing that you should know: my life is split into two–the marine industry and all of the arts. Tonight I helped out at the front desk with auditions for our next upcoming play, and upon leaving those auditions, something donned on me. Boat Shows are purely an art form set up in theatre mode. It’s not that I didn’t already know, but I just didn’t know how to put it into words until tonight. Then, it all made sense.

I mean seriously though, think about it.

What do you need in a play?
{writing} Time. Location. Character Description. Plot.
{acting} Talent. Practice. Stage design. Props.
{performances} Audience.

The time and location is when the boat show event is going on.

The web presence online or in paper form explains your character description prior to the boat show.

The plot is selling boats or our merchandise, making new connections, and having new experiences.

We–the industry employees–are the talent.

Doing your job every day at your normal job site is the practice you need to prepare for the show.

The stage design is how you set up your booth visually.

The props are what you’d bring to sell (boats/merch), marketing material and freebies.

And, your customers are what would be the audience.

When a customer walks into your booth they are instantly reading your story. When you interact with that customer you will learn their story. It is pure dialogue–an exchange of words–and the entire experience can be written into an art form of some sorts. And, when it’s all over, there’s the last celebratory dinner before going home (the cast party) not to mention to mentally prepare for the next boat show (when you go to auditions once again)

Gearing up for the 2017 Boat Show Season

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It’s 2017—a brand new year—and for most areas it is winter, which means the phone isn’t ringing so much. Right now is the perfect time to adjust your business strategies: study what worked and didn’t work from the previous year, and come up with new plans.

Other than gaining sales in your general atmosphere, where else would be the next most important sales environment? Boat Shows.

As the industry news rolls out you know that the Boat Show season is starting up again. That means that your future customers are doing research to find that perfect boat. And soon, those same customers will have some tax refund money to spend.

Have you thought about how you’re planning on targeting your customers at the boat shows this year? 

Here are three categories you should really focus on: inventory, leads and show strategy.

 

INVENTORY

  • Your floor plan is key. Take a look at your oldest boats and make a deal to sell them to make room for new inventory (and avoid paying extra fees on the longevity of the boat age). Have current 2017 models in stock for each boat line. If for some reason you don’t have the current models, have the boat literature and make the ordering process as painless as possible.
  • Show off your inventory. List the boats you have available to sell online in as many places as you can (company website, social media, online boating marketplaces, etc).
  • Year start promotions. Almost all engine/boat manufacturers start their promos for the first half the year, use that to your advantage. Customers will love the fact that their engine/boat will be covered an extra few years under warranty, and they will be up for spending the money if there’s something in it for them.

LEADS

  • Start a boat show lead campaign. This should be your pre-boat show lead generator. Use a phrase or something with your company name and get it out there. Come up with a questionnaire for future customers and place it on your website, social media and send in a newsletter. The questions should pertain to if they are looking to purchase a boat this boat show—and that is who you need to focus on. Make appointments and schedule seatrials in advance.
  • Reach out to existing customers. Send out a general newsletter to all existing customers telling them about the upcoming boat show and to contact you using the boat show lead campaign email address. Use social media to let everyone know you’re going to be at the show, and what you plan on bringing.
  • Current leads. Even though you need to generate sales to keep money flowing in, provide some sort of incentive for current walk-ins to join you at the boat show. Free tickets to the show, free swag to wear during the show, something to help you out.

SHOW STRATEGY

  • Visual merchandising is key. Be unique. Design your booth with the customer in mind—have a seating area where they will be comfortable enough to sit down and wait for their turn, or just relax by looking at your boat literature. Bring something personable to your area—show off awards or photos of staff members.
  • Offer free swag or company merchandise for sale. Give customers an extra reason to remember you. Exchange leads for free swag, or offer a percentage off (boat show promo) for company merchandise. If an item is cool enough, people will see it and come search for it. Plus, anything with your name on it is great marketing.
  • Bring personality into your brand. Make time to get to know your customers and their stories. Make a friend first, then make them into a customer. If they don’t make a purchase with you today, find a way for them to remember you enough to come back, and keep in contact with them. And, don’t forget to always check up on your previous customers—their value is the most important—especially when they tell others about the positive experience with your company, of which, may then lead to more sales.