Computers. Cell phones. Texting. E-mail. Aren’t they all great inventions that are making our lives better? Not so fast.

Sure, these innovations are causing us to interact faster and, probably, with more people than ever before. But, the truth is we’re now recognizing this interaction is apparently at the expense of good old fashion face-to-face time and experiences.

Take, for example, e-mail. These days, we’re e-mailing all day long from our computers, according to John Freeman, author of The Tyranny of E-mail: The Four Thousand-Year Journey to Your Inbox. In a recent poll conducted by AOL, almost 60 percent of the respondents admitted they have even checked their email while in the bathroom. We glance at it mid-conversation. It’s the first and last thing we do each day. Could one say we’re addicted?

But here’s the problem, says Freeman. The more we e-mail, the more e-mail we get. And, the more e-mail we get leads to more time spent . . . well, e-mailing! Studies show that those hours spent typing away don’t come from the workday or TV viewing, but from time with our families.

To e-mail, let’s add the DVR as another great invention that’s robbing families of interpersonal time. According to Freeman, a recent study by the Nielsen Company revealed TV viewing has reached an all-time high of 151 hours per month. Blame the DVR, he contends, at least in part. It makes it so easy to capture any program, including many we think we might be interested in, for later viewing. The result - more hours parked in front of the tube watching all the stuff we’ve saved.

Many sociologists now worry that modern technology is resulting in less and less quality time sharing good experiences with loved ones and friends. Heck, nowadays, instead of actually talking with a friend on the cell phone, we let our thumbs do the talking and just text! Whatever happened to simply enjoying time together, you know, face-to-face?

I’ll bet you’ve figured out where I’m going with this blog. Right! Today’s families need a vehicle that can put back into their lives the shared experiences, the face-to-face time, the “together factor.” And, that is exactly what we do as boat dealers – serve as agents for that “together factor.”

Given this growing 21st century trend of getting buried in electronic devices that result in less quality human interaction time, it’s now more advantageous than ever for our sales teams to highlight, in every presentation, the role boat ownership will play in providing those family face-to-face experiences steadily disappearing these days. A powerful selling point! ?


2020: A Timeline

Changes ahead, changes behind: A long, strange year.

Boat Registrations Continued to Soar

Strong demand continued through September.

2020: What We Learned

A cross- section of industry leaders weighs in.

Boatloads of New Boaters

The influx of newbies to recreational boating.

Inventory to Remain a Challenge in 2021

Retailer sentiment remained strong in October, but dealers see a shortage of boats as a hurdle for next year

Amplifying Our Collective Voice

In this time of immense change, we all must continue to position the industry for a redefined future

Fortune Favors the Bold

Viking and Valhalla Boat Works had quite a FLIBS.