ALEXANDRIA, VA (August 29, 2012) – Results are in for the Recreational Boating & Fishing Foundation’s (RBFF) State Boat Registration Marketing Program, a nationwide effort to increase boat registrations among lapsed boaters around the country. RBFF, in partnership with state natural resource agencies, distributed 450,000 direct mail pieces this past spring, reminding boat owners with lapsed registrations to re-register their boats. More than 32,000 boats were registered in 15 states reflecting an average 7.93 percent response rate from the program.

“We are thrilled with the results from this year’s nationwide program. We share similar goals with our state partners, one of them, to increase boat registrations,” said RBFF President and CEO, Frank Peterson. “We are committed to achieving this goal together; a program like this is a win-win for all involved.”

The program generated more than $1.16 million for state conservation efforts for participating states, with an additional $96,450 estimated for the states from the Sport Fish Restoration and Boating Trust Fund.

“Boat registrations are critical to state fish and wildlife and boating infrastructure programs,” said RBFF President and CEO Frank Peterson. “We’ve learned that if we remind boat owners about the joys of the sport and the important impact their participation has on conservation, they’ll get back out on the water.”

RBFF’s State Boat Registration Marketing Program originated in 2009 with a pilot program in just one state. Between 2009 and 2011, four states completed pilot programs and the collective learnings were used to develop a nationwide marketing effort which launched in 2012 with 15 states. RBFF fully funded and implemented the program on behalf of state agencies, with the participating state agencies receiving 100 percent of the revenue generated.

The National Marine Manufacturers Association’s (NMMA) 2012 Annual Statistical Report stated boating participation in 2011 increased by 10 percent to 83 million, with an estimated 35.65 million adults actively engaging in shopping/planning to purchase a boat this year.  Boating alone has an estimated annual economic impact of $72 billion.

About RBFF

RBFF is a nonprofit organization established in 1998 to increase public awareness and appreciation of the need to protect, conserve and restore the nation’s aquatic natural resources. RBFF helps to increase participation in recreational angling and boating through national outreach programs including the Take Me Fishing™ campaign and Anglers’ Legacy™.

Contact: Stephanie Vatalaro, 703-778-5156, svatalaro@rbff.org