By Reino Suonsilta
Once again SCIRA Finland participated successfully Helsinki International Boat Show, the largest boat show in Northern Europe during Feb 12-21, 2016. Kai Saarhelo’s new Zeltic FIN 31260 was the shining star of the dinghy hall and quite many of the over 76 000 visitors found their way to enjoy the active hospitality of the snipe booth.
SCIRA Finland is using wide range of activities to promote snipe sailing and participating this fair has been one of the traditional ones for over 30 years. In addition to our own booth, this year we did also run a series of promotional presentations in general show stage. As a result we gathered 45 hot contacts to people who are interested in Snipe class and who will get an opportunity to test snipe sailing in the coming TrySnipe events.
Well-run fair campaign can offer many positive results to the class:
– Good opportunity for current and old snipe sailors to meet
– Generates positive momentum and extra boost to active SCIRA members
– Shows the activity of the class to outside parties
– Creates general interest to Snipe for press, yacht clubs, other classes, etc.
– Enables collecting contact information for further recruiting activities
Boat fair is good tool for promotion but to be successful it requires advance planning and lot of hard, but rewarding work.
Here you are with 10 steps that have worked well for us and should help you when planning to participate a fair:
1. Start preparation early.
2. Prepare a plan and agree clear goals for what you want to achieve.
3. Assign a committed leader for the project.
4. Recruit voluntary people for preparation, fair activities and follow-up.
5. Be active with communication to the organizers, sponsors and press & media.
6. Communicate your plans and activities to SCIRA members for viral marketing.
7. Be prepared to invest some money for brochures, decoration, etc. Video and/or photos work well. Consider to cover part of the cost by selling snipe merchandise.
8. Arrange full time personnel coverage to the booth. Empty boot is a lost opportunity.
9. Be active at the booth, tell good sailing stories, introduce the boat, log names and emails of all interested people. We have a great offering, be proud of it.
10. Make follow-up actions to help the interested people up in the snipe ladder.
And one bonus step:
Have Serious Fun!