Stillwater, OK – KICKER®, a nationally recognized brand in the automotive, truck and powersports mobile audio markets, as well as home and lifestyle audio segments, has decided to strategically focus efforts to boost brand awareness and sales within the recreational marine industry. Having earned a solid reputation and growth in the wake/surf boat, pontoon and runabout markets over the past 22 years, KICKER’s expansion efforts as Kicker Marine Audio are designed to generate greater recreational boating reach among boating consumers, OEMs and the retail aftermarket.
“We have been operating successfully in the marine marketplace within a few key sectors serving OEMs and dealers nationally and internationally,” said Jeremy Bale, KICKER Associate Director, Marketing-Marine Division, “We believe our newly expanded marine-specific KM Series product line is well suited to meet the demands of boating customers who seek both quality and top-notch audio performance as part of the boating experience. Our durable, waterproof and maintenance-free products are ideally situated to propel both consumer, OEM and after-market growth.”
To help facilitate its long-term plan for enhanced marine consumer and B2B penetration, KICKER has retained two experienced marine marketing powerhouses and journalists to maximize its efforts.
PR Power’s Marilyn DeMartini, an over two-decade veteran of the powerboat circuit, and Kenton Smith Marketing’s Wanda Kenton Smith, with 35+ years of industry experience, have partnered together on a joint marketing initiative to champion and turn up the horsepower for the KICKER brand. The twosome will assist KICKER with its marine PR/communications and brand marketing initiatives, promotions and sponsorships, special events, and select media initiatives.
“We interviewed agencies and marketers in the marine sector and our sales, marketing and marine OEM team were impressed by the broad spectrum of experience that both Marilyn and Wanda have acquired over many years working in the industry,” said Bale, “We believe their joint professional connections and experience working throughout all sectors of the marine industry will be extremely valuable to our organization.”
Already, the team has developed and negotiated strategic partnerships with the Boating Industry Elevate Summit/Top 100; the Marine Retailers Association of America’s Dealer Week; and as keynote presenting sponsor for the FLIB Marine Marketers of America luncheon and leadership meeting. The team is also actively engaged in Miami International Boat Show media and event planning, among other major initiatives.
“Having worked with boat manufacturers, brokers and media for over 20 years, it is exciting to take on a marine product that reflects the fun lifestyle of our industry,” said DeMartini who was initially introduced to KICKER through a referral from Speedboat Magazine. “After having an opportunity to meet with the KICKER sales and marketing team at their impressive headquarters facility and learning about their vision, Wanda and I both felt we were uniquely well equipped to help them achieve their goals and objectives.”
“It’s awesome to work with a very smart group of executives who represent a rock solid and very successful global organization such as KICKER,” added Kenton Smith. “I’m thrilled to partner with my long-term professional colleague and friend Marilyn DeMartini and to combine our horsepower and skill sets to benefit and grow the KICKER Marine Audio business.”
KICKER has built its 46-year “Livin’ Loud” legacy from a two-man operation, hand-building professional speaker systems in a one-car garage to its current 280,000 square foot World Headquarters and visitors center in Stillwater, OK. Stillwater Designs, manufacturer of KICKER products, employs more than 200 dedicated music lovers, who like founder and president, Steve Irby, take pride not only in the company’s products, but in its impressive showroom—a museum that showcases the history of its line, unique vehicles and the “Wall of Boom” sound experience.
Irby developed the first full frequency-range speaker box, designed specifically for cars and trucks and pioneered the mobile stereo enclosure market. The brand is known for delivering concert-like audio quality across a wide volume range with renowned bass and accurate sound.
Over the years, KICKER evolved into lifestyle personal and home product for digital media devices, including Bluetoothâ speaker systems, the Bullfrogâ wireless outdoor speaker, high-performance Taborä Bluetooth and wireless headphones, and micro-fit noise-isolating in-ear headsets. KICKER may be best known as the top mobile audio manufacturer of automotive, truck and powersports sound systems, audio upgrades for Ford, Dodge and GMC and more recently as the supplier of the popular GMC MultiPro Tailgate Audio System.
The company’s authorized dealer network spans 1,200 across the U.S. and export sales are served through a network of distributors serving over 2,000 dealers in 50 countries.
About KICKER Marine Audio:
KICKER Marine Audio components include the highest grade of durable and waterproof source units, subwoofers, coaxials, amplifiers, towers and enclosures. Colorful lighting is incorporated into the speaker systems with a remote that can change colors with lighting modes and 20 colors. Some of its OEM customers include premium brands like Advantage, Bennington, Cruisers Yachts, Four Winns, Glastron, Scarab, Sea Ray and World Cat.
KICKER’s mission is to continue to be on the industry’s cutting edge, pushing the limits of audio design technology, performance and integration in the quest for ultimate sound.