Faced with COVID-19-forced shutdowns in March, FB Marine Group in South Florida found itself better prepared than most full-service marine dealership, brokerage and charter businesses thanks to its virtual dealership solution, which includes mobile service teams and a parts delivery service. Launched two years ago, those two elements were the beginnings of what the company’s Kim Sweers call FB Marine Group’s “Customer Experience Strategy.”
Boat Boss series host Kim Sweers of FB Marine Group recently interviewed Brunswick Corp. chief executive officer David Foulkes.
Continuing down the virtual path, Sweers has launched Boat Boss—an online live-interview format show where she interviews high-profile marine industry figures as her guests. Using StreamYard, which is similar to other live video meeting platforms such as Zoom and Microsoft Teams, Sweers has produced eight Boat Boss segments so far. Her most recent segment featured David Foulkes, the chief executive officer of Brunswick Corp., the Illinois-based parent company of Mercury Marine and Mercury Racing.
For those who missed the show live, it’s carried on YouTube.
“The Boat Boss came about during the pandemic,” said Sweers, who works closely with her husband, Randy, in their family-owned business. “At first, I didn’t know what to do with it. But now I see it as a way to raise awareness about people in the marine industry, the real shakers and movers, and not just ‘what they do’ but how they live.
“The response has been tremendous—it’s gone viral,” she continued. “Before that, we had Matt Gruhn, the president of the Marine Retailers Association of America, as a guest, was well as (former offshore racing great) Richie Powers, who is part of our business development team.”
Among the show’s most recent guests was Ken Clinton, the president of Intrepid Powerboats, which entered a sales and service partnership this year with FB Marine Group. Sweers interviewed Clinton during the recent Fort Lauderdale Boat show, where the Largo, Fla., company unveiled its impressive new 477 Evolution model.
“Ken Clinton started on the production line and over the next 30 years worked his way to Intrepid’s ‘oval office,’” she said.
Sweers, who has hosted the show in various locations including aboard vessels, will host the next segment. at Fort Lauderdale Marine Center with mega-yachts serving as a backdrop.
“Boat Boss is such a nice platform that showcases how you can make a living in the industry, but it’s more than that,” said Sweers. “Boat Boss is a brand focused on living, working and playing on the water. Our plan is to continue to produce one show a week throughout the rest of the year and 2021.”
Said Sweers, “I see Boat Boss as a way to raise awareness about people in the marine industry, the real shakers and movers, and not just ‘what they do’ but how they live.”