March is here and Scuba Divers are thinking about diving again. For many of us in the United States, it has been a long, cold, hard winter. In fact, some of you are still dealing with the cold, the rain and the snow. That’s OK. It’s sunny and warm somewhere. Spring Breakers will appreciate that. So will our traveling diving friends.
The Industry Planners have been getting ready for the 2018 season during January and February and are in the middle of their pre-season marketing push for the month of March. We saw surprisingly good turn-outs at the January Dallas Show and February’s Our World Underwater. We haven’t got a report from the Boston Sea Rovers yet and the industry is getting ready to invade Secaucus, New Jersey for Beneath the Sea. Shortly after BTS, we’ll all be in Tacoma for the Scuba & H2O Adventure Show. Then it’s DIVE, DIVE, DIVE until Scuba Show in June.
Managing the Tacoma Show has really made me think a lot about the power of proper planning, targeted communication, community involvement and follow-up. Putting on a successful show or running a successful company takes the same skills and attention to details. You have to plan well and implement your plans in a timely manner. You have to communicate your plans to everyone involved in the project/company. One central person has to get everyone on-board and keep them in the loop. Too many things can fall through the cracks if you don’t. And the last thing is proper and continuous follow-up. Sending out a message is only one part of the process. Did your attended audience receive it? Did they read it and understand it? Did your “Call to Action” make them commit to your offer? Are you all ready to go on Day 1?
If you are an experienced planner you know that success can only happen if you perform the proper inputs and nurture the process until it produces the desired outcome. Plant the seed – water the field – harvest the crop. Business is no different. Neither is an Industry. The recreational diving industry is only going to improve if we continue to run our businesses professionally, proficiently, productively and profitably. The New 4 P’s of Marketing. The Business of Diving makes the Hobby of Diving possible.
That idea brings us to a great realization. Dive Industry Professionals should do what they enjoy doing and are good at. Do you enjoy teaching more than anything? Did you get in the business so you could go diving more often? Do you like to tinker with equipment and fix things? Think about what you really like to do and figure out a way that you can specialize in that. All of the other stuff can be delegated or sourced out. The thing is that as Dive Industry Professionals, we need to do the things we like to do and are good at and hire people to do the things we don’t know how to do or don’t like to do. If you spend all of your time doing everything that has to be done, you’ll never have the time or the money to do the things you want to do. “I do the things I have to do, when I have to do them. That allows me to do the things I want to do, when I want to do them.”
I hope to see you at Beneath the Sea. I’ll be at Booth 412 if you want to talk to someone who loves to do Sales & Marketing, and is good at it! Safe Travels.
The following Dive Industry Association Members are exhibiting at Beneath The Sea on March 23-25, 2018 at the New Jersey Meadowlands Expo Center in Secaucus, NJ. Make it a point to visit our DIA Members FIRST.
Retail Dive Centers
- Discovery Diving Company – Booth 324- www.discoverydiving.com
- Discovery Diving Company – Booth 324 – www.discoverydiving.com
- Single Divers.com – Booth 844 – www.singledivers.com
- Big Blue Aquatic Gifts – Booth 216 www.bigbluedive.com
- Dive Flag Jewelry – Booth 502 – www.diveflagjewelry.com
- Diving Unlimited International – Booth 814 – www.DUI-Online.com
- Prescription Dive Masks – Booth 432 – www.PrescriptionDiveMasks.com
- SeaLife Cameras / Pioneer Research – Booth 819 www.sealife-cameras.com
- Stream2Sea – Booth 413 – www.stream2sea.com
- Tektite Industries – Booth 613 – www.tek-tite.com
- Thermalution – Booth 611 – www.Thermalutionstore.com
- Ultralight Control Systems – Booth 509 www.ulcs.com
Travel Businesses, Destinations, Resorts, & Dive Operators
- Beqa Lagoon Resort (Fiji) – Booth 427 – www.beqalagoonresort.com
- Bill Beard’s Costa Rica – Booth 510 – www.billbeardcostarica.com
- Buddy Dive Resort (Bonaire) – Booth 730 www.BuddyDive.com
- Cane Bay Dive Shop (St Croix) – Booth 629 www.canebayscuba.com
- Captain Don’s Habitat Bonaire – Booth 627 – www.habitatbonaire.com
- Cayman Brac Beach Resort – Booth 624 – www.ClearlyCayman.com
- Colbalt Coast Grand Cayman – Booth 624 – www.ClearlyCayman.com
- Dive Paradise / Hotel Cozumel – Booth 500 – www.diveparadise
- Divi Flamingo Beach Resort & Casino (Bonaire) – Booth 626 www.diviresorts.com
- Florida Keys & Key West – Booth 317 – www.fla-keys.com/diving
- Go West Diving (Curacao) – Booth 430 – www.gowestdiving.com
- Little Cayman Beach Resort – Booth 624 – www.ClearlyCayman.com
- Marco Vincent Dive Resort (Philippines) – Booth 704 – www.mvdive.com
- Mayan Princess Beach Resort – Booth 214 – www.MayanPrincess.com
- Plaza Beach Resort Bonaire – Booth 433 – www.PlazaBeachResortBonaire.com
- Pro Dive International – Booth 716 – www.ProDiveInternational.com
- Quest Dive Adventures – Booth 729 – www.questdive.com
- Reef Divers – Booth 624 – www.reefseas.com
- Roatan Charter, Inc. – Booth 214 – www.roatancharter.com
- Rocio Del Mar Liveaboard – Booth 323 – www.rociodelmarliveaboard.com
- Sam’s Tours Palau – Booth 607 – www.samstours.com
- Scuba Club Cozumel – Booth 600 – www.scubaclubcozumel.com
- Scuba Travel Ventures – Booth 415 – www.scubatravelventures.com
- Sea Robin Cozumel – Booth 512 – www.searobincozumel.com
- St. Croix Ultimate Bluewater Adventures – Booth 402 – www.stcroixscuba.com
- Turquoise Bay Dive Resort (Roatan) – Booth 214 – www.turquoisebayresort.com
- World Dive Adventures – Booth 810 – www.worlddive.com
Non-Profits & Associations
- Beneath The Sea – Booth 307 – www.beneaththesea.org
- Dive Industry Association – Booth 412 www.diveindustry.net
- Dive Industry Foundation – Booth 412 www.diveindustry.org
- Diveheart – Booth 109 – www.diveheart.org
- Eastern Carolina Artificial Reef Association – Booth 324 – www.carolinareef.com
- NAUI Worldwide – Booth 315 – www.naui.org
- Underwater Society of America – Booth 222 – www.underwater-society.org
Media, Shows & Events, Retail Services
Holy Smokes! It’s February. How did that happen so quickly? I was prepared. I was ready. I made my plans and executed them in a timely manner. But still, the month of January zoomed by.
How was it for you? Did you do your business planning during the Holidays and hit the ground running in January? We did and had a great month because of it. We’re up 35% over this time last year. And it’s not just us. All of the dive show organizers were delighted with their attendance in January; Boot, Baltimore Dive Show, Lone Star State Dive & Travel, and two Adventure Travel Shows. We are getting ready for Our World-Underwater in Chicago, followed by BTS and then the Scuba & H2O Adventure Show in Tacoma. And we have plans to do more diving and resort site visits. It’s time to get some new pictures, videos, and stories about our diving businesses so we can take their story to the public. This is going to be the year of the “BIG Dive Promotion.” Divers will have more money to spend on equipment, training and travel this year and we owe it to them to help them spend their money wisely.
I don’t have a crystal ball or anything like that but after working in the Business of Diving for over 45 years, I do have a strong “gut” feeling. Especially about this year. Diving businesses are going to be listening to Dive Industry Mavens (Knowledgeable & Experienced Opinion Leaders) more seriously this year. Mavens who have years of hands-on experience combined with a strong background in diving products, diving company history, marketing techniques, consumer behavior and countless hours of water time. Successful businesses will want to know who will be buying this year, what they will be buying and why they are buying. Companies that want to succeed will need to know the best ways to be in front of consumers when they are ready to make a buying decision. This year will not be a time for rookies. Only Mavens need apply.
Here are a few things we need to know to help businesses that want to succeed; Product Knowledge. What’s HOT, What’s NOT. What’s NOW, What’s NEW, What’s NEXT. Customer Knowledge. Wholesalers need to know who the better Retailers are. We don’t need many. We only need good ones. Retailers need to focus on Active Divers – Current Customers, Former Customers & Future Customers. Again, we don’t need many, just good ones. Marketing Knowledge. We have to have a message that resonates with our Divers and we have to reach them the way they liked to be reached, not the ways we like. So is that all we need to do? We just have to become Mavens at three things. What we sell – Who we sell it to – How we reach our customers. Easy? No. Manageable? Yes.
Throughout the year, we will be discussing these three segments of Marketing Success; Product Management; Customer Acquision, Maintenance, & Retention; and Marketing Strategy. Each topic opens up a whole new field of study, but we can organize it and break it down into easy-to-understand topics. I’m looking forward to speaking with our industry leaders this year to learn and share some of our industry best practices in marketing.
Stay in touch. Have a great season. We’ll see you in Chicago.
The following Dive Industry Association Members are exhibiting at the 48th Annual Our World-Underwater Dive & Travel Show on February 17-18, 2018 at the Chicago Marriott O’Hare, Chicago, IL. Visit our DIA Members FIRST.
- Scuba Emporium – Booth 53 – www.scubaemporium.com
Dive Boat Operators
- Alaska Sharks – Booth 72 – www.AlaskaSharks.com
- Windy City Diving – Booths 1 – www.windycitydiving.net
- Prescription Dive Masks, Inc. – Booth 55 – www.PrescriptionDiveMasks.com
- SeaLife Cameras / Pioneer Research – Booth 92 – www.sealife-cameras.com
Travel Businesses, Destinations, Resorts, & Dive Operators
- Anse Chastanet Resort & Scuba St. Lucia – Booth 57 – www.ansechastanet.com
- Beqa Lagoon Resort (Fiji) – Booth 42 – www.beqalagoonresort.com
- Buddy Dive Resort (Bonaire) – Booth 50 – www.BuddyDive.com
- Cane Bay Dive Shop (St Croix) – Booth 11 – www.canebayscuba.com
- Captain Don’s Habitat Bonaire – Booth 46 – www.habitatbonaire.com
- Cayman Brac Beach Resort – Booth 44 – www.ClearlyCayman.com/cayman-brac-beach-resort/
- Clearly Cayman Dive Resorts – Booth 44 – www.ClearlyCayman.com
- Cobalt Coast Grand Cayman – Booth 44 – www.ClearlyCayman.com/cobalt-coast-grand-cayman/
- Dive Paradise Cozumel – Booth 58 – www.diveparadise.com
- Divi Flamingo Beach Resort & Casino (Bonaire) – Booth 12 – www.diviresorts.com
- Florida Keys & Key West – Booth 99 – www.fla-keys.com/diving
- Go West Diving / All West – Booth 93 – www.gowestdiving.com
- Little Cayman Beach Resort – Booth 44 – www.ClearlyCayman.com/little-cayman-beach-resort/
- Marco Vincent Dive Resort – Booth 36 – www.mvdive.com
- Mayan Princess Beach & Dive Resort – Booth 34 – www.mayanprincess.com
- Plaza Beach Resort Bonaire – Booth 96 – www.PlazaBeachResortBonaire.com
- Quest Dive Adventures – Booth 13 – www.questdive.com
- Ravencroft Lodge – Booth 72 – www.AlaskaSharks.com
- Rich Travels – Booth 38 – www.richtravels.com
- Roatan Charter – Booth 34 – www.roatancharter.com
- Rocio Del Mar Liveaboards – Booth 102 – www.RocioDelMarLiveaboards.com
- Scuba Club Cozumel – Booth 31 – www.scubaclubcozumel.com
- Scuba Travel Ventures – Booth 6 – www.scubatravelventures.com
- St Croix Ultimate Bluewater Adventures – Booth 69 – www.stcroixscuba.com
- Turquoise Bay Dive & Beach Resort – Booth 35 – www.turquoisebayresort.com
- Dive Industry Foundation – Booth 14 – www.diveindustry.org
- Diveheart – Booth 83 – www.diveheart.org
- Save Our Leatherbacks Operation – Booth 78 – www.leatherbackturtles.org
Associations, Media and Shows & Events
There is no better month for optimism than January. As business owners in an adventure industry we tend to always see the silver lining in the clouds and are positive about the possibilities and opportunities in each new year. Even though I may fit the description of the eternal optimist, I still believe there is no substitute for good planning and prompt follow-through. If you worked through the Holidays and did your strategic planning for the new year, January is just a month of following through on your plans. Step by step. You’ll be ready to hit the ground running and might even expect to have a gang-buster year right out of the gates. If, however, you just enjoyed the Holidays and ignored your business management responsibilities, January is going to pass you by like you were standing still in the middle of the Daytona 500.
This year is going to be a record year for the diving industry. I can feel it in my bones. The United States has a Businessman in charge of the White House and the market is already off to the races. The stock market is over 26,000. That alone has added Trillions of dollars to the economy. The Senate approved a tax cut and normal, everyday people – your customers – will have thousands of dollars more to spend this spring. Politics aside, there is going to be more cash on the table this year for recreation and travel purchases. If you are in the business of selling recreation gear and training or if you have a hugh investment in real estate and capital equipment specializing in watersports or if you make your living filling heads on beds and butts on seats, you need to prepare yourself for this boom in the market.
Don’t get me wrong. I’m not running for office and I don’t care who you voted for. What I do care about is that you are in business in the diving industry and there are millions of divers who will be looking to spend money this year. They might as well spend their money with you rather than someone else. Right? The Dive Industry Association is in the Trade Association business and our mission is to help our Members better understand market opportunities and help them create a message that can be delivered to potential customers who need, want, and can afford their programs, products and services.
As an Association, we are ready for this year and our Sales are already UP 42% compared to last year. We are spending our money on marketing tools that increase business opportunities for our Association and our Members. We are increasing our print, digital and face-to-face marketing campaigns this year. If there ever was a year that you wanted to join an organization that helps you reach more customers, this could be the year.
For more information about Membership in the Dive Industry Association, call Gene Muchanski at 321-914-3778 or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
You have asked, and we have listened!
You have asked repeatedly for products that will allow you to compete against online sellers of scuba equipment. We have now answered by developing a line of products that can only be sold through brick and mortar retail. These items will not be available for sale online and we will not sell to any dealer that attempts to offer these products for sale any place outside the four walls of their store. We are calling this our “Dealers with Doors™” program.
Innovative Scuba masks, and regulator introductions (featured in the August 2017 Scuba Diving Magazine ScubaLab tests) are a examples of the first products we are aggressively marketing with the “Dealers with Doors™” program. We have and will continue to point consumers to our retail dealers for the sale of these products. A great example of low cost and high quality are the Makai regulator 1st and 2nd stage and the Honu regulator 1st and 2nd stage.
Furthermore, our sister company Tovatec has engineered the most advanced dive light on the market. It features 1,000 lumens, built in USB tail charging, and a color indicator for battery charge combined into a compact package. These products will serve as the foundation for a growing line of products for Dealers with Doors™.
We hope you consider this new line of products as you determine your store’s product selection. Since the products cannot be purchased online, the retail pricing is at your sole discretion. Showrooming and customers price comparing on their smartphone is no longer a threat to your business.
The Dealers with Doors™ regulators, Tovatec lights, and Innovative Scuba masks, are available as of DEMA 2017.
We welcome your input on the program and future products – feel free to call your sales representative or our company at 719.597.2885
Chuck Fultz, Owner
Innovative Scuba Concepts
I love December. Always have and hopefully always will. As we look back on the past eleven months, how many of us in the diving industry can honestly say they had a great year because they understood the market, did what was necessary to prosper and succeeded? I don’t see all of your hands going up. I saw the ones who had a good year in 2017. They were at the trade and consumer shows, either as exhibitors, attendees or support organizations. They were giving lecturers on the joys of diving and their own personal experiences. They wrote articles and books about all kinds of diving. They traveled to their favorite dive sites, whether it was their local quarry or some exotic resort destination. They were spending time with their customers keeping the excitement of diving alive. I saw them at the beach and on local boat dives. I dove with them at dive resorts in the Caribbean and the South Pacific. They were out there and they were active. Among this group, the business of diving was alive and well. And so were their customers.
I could spend hours writing about what I didn’t see and the groups and sectors who did little or nothing to promote diving, even to their customers. I could tell you about the many diving businesses that worked hard at maximizing their income while cutting back on their marketing and advertising expenditures. But in the true spirit of Christmas and the Holiday Season, in addition to my belief that every Dive Industry Leader should be more like Dale Carnegie (never criticize, condemn or complain), I will not go negative on you. Instead, I would like to focus on what can be done to support our customers, increase opportunities for them and grow the industry.
Scuba Diving is a social recreation. It all starts out because one person thinks it’s cool and goes diving. Then they get their family and friends involved. One thing leads to another and they buy their diving gear and make plans to either join a club or find an active dive store that dives a lot. I’ve noticed that people tend to first become divers if they know someone else who dives. They stay actively involved in the recreation if there are a sufficient number of planned dives and shows & events to attend. Keeping people actively involved in scuba diving is all based on activities and relationships.
I’ve been a diving Cheerleader all my life. I loved scuba diving from the first time I put my head underwater and drew breathe from a regulator. There weren’t a lot a divers back in 1967 in Connecticut. In my High School of 1,200 kids there were 2. I made it 3. Soon there were dozens. My philosophy was, “Let’s Go Diving.” If you don’t know how, I’ll teach you. If you don’t have gear, I’ll lend you one of my extra sets until you buy your own. Either way, I’m going diving every weekend, with or without you. For the next 30 years I was never without a dive buddy. Now at the age of 65 I no longer lead the charge or rally the troops from the front lines. That torch has been passed on to a younger generation. I’m content to enjoy my “Princess Diving” (warm, clear, shallow, with lots of fish) with my Best Dive Buddy while I rally the new troops from my computer (from Florida or at a Dive Resort in Saint Somewhere).
What will make scuba diving popular again? If you are already certified, go diving. Invite a friend to go with you. Get your un-certified friends to take lessons. Build your inner circle of diving buddies and go out and have fun. Find a dive store that is active. Join a club that does things. Find a Travel Agent who knows the best dive destinations. Visit our blogs, websites and social media publications to see how many diving opportunities are out there for active dive industry professionals. We’ll introduce you to who you need to know to get connected. There’s a lot of potential out there for you.
The Dive Industry Association and it’s non-profit organization, The Dive Industry Foundation, are in the business of knowing the diving industry and making recommendations to divers and non-divers alike, so they can: 1) Learn to Dive. 2) Buy their gear. 3) Go Diving. and 4) Stay Active. The Dive Industry Association does its work through business memberships and the Dive Industry Foundation does its work through donations from Industry Professionals like yourself. Help grow the diving industry and our recreation. Support these two organizations. Happy Holidays. GO Diving.
For more information, contact Gene Muchanski at email@example.com
Industrial Revolution (Intova) & Innovative Scuba Concepts Announces the Termination of Its Distribution Agreement
Innovative Scuba Concepts
6170 Lakeshore Court
Colorado Springs, CO 80915
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Industrial Revolution (Intova) & Innovative Scuba Concepts Announces the Termination of Its Distribution Agreement
Steve Llorente, Vice President of Sales – Industrial Revolution, Inc. firstname.lastname@example.org / (425) 285-1111
Chuck Fultz, President- Innovative Scuba Concepts
email@example.com / (719) 597-2885
TUKWILA, WA — November 28, 2017 – Industrial Revolution, Inc., owner of the Intova brand and Innovative Scuba Concepts announced today that they have mutually agreed to end their exclusive distribution agreement. The termination of the agreement is effective December 1, 2017.
After much consideration and a desire to best serve dealers in the scuba dive market, the companies came to the decision to end their partnership. The return of distribution to Industrial Revolution (IR) will enable the company to offer dealers access to all Intova products and direct access to Intova’s technical support team. It will also allow Innovative Scuba Concepts (ISC) to focus on their own brands within the dive market.
Dealer orders for Intova products that have been submitted to Innovative Scuba Concepts prior to December 1st will be filled and invoiced from their facility. Any backorders that cannot be filled and orders for new products, including the new X4K camera and Intova’s new Marine Grade accessories will be transferred to IR for fulfillment upon new product launch in December. Beginning December 1, 2017 all dealer orders for Intova cameras and accessories should be sent direct to IR for fulfillment. Dealers who purchased Intova products between 2014-2016 will have active accounts with Industrial Revolution and can place orders without delay.
As a welcome to dealers who have been purchasing Intova products from ISC, Industrial Revolution will be extending the DEMA 2017 show offers to dealers through December 2017. Orders must indicate “DEMA 2017 SPECIAL” when submitted and must be shipped by December 31, 2017.
Dealer questions: Candice Mann – Candice.firstname.lastname@example.org
Born in Honolulu, Hawaii in 1995, Intova looks to the scenic landscapes around them for inspiration. Their mission is to deliver camera products and accessories that offer high value and unique feature sets. Intova’s pursuit of innovation has led to many industry firsts and has allowed the product line to expand to include digital cameras, HD video cameras, and waterproof electronics. Find us at www.intova.net
About Innovative Scuba Concepts
Founded in 1988, Innovative Scuba Concepts has grown to become the market leader in diving accessories, offering more than 4,000 products to customers in the United States and abroad. Industry leaders know they can trust Innovative Scuba Concepts to provide unparalleled customer service combined with a wide variety of quality products at a value price. web: www.innovativescuba.com