Azimut Yachts has launched a Virtual Lounge and will hold a series of e-Boat Shows. The Italian builder said that its first e-Boat Show will run from May 27 to 30. It will “replicate many of the key features of a conventional boat show,” the company said in a statement. The Azimuth-Benetti Group is the world’s largest builder of yachts over 78 feet.
The e-Boat Show will have product exhibitions and include Live Chat sessions with Azimut sales managers and other experts. Federico Lantero, Azimut’s brand manager, told Robb Report that the goal was to provide visitors “with the same level of engagement that you might normally experience face to face.” Lantero added that keeping “talk alive within our community during this period of social distancing allows us to spend time to share the yachting lifestyle.”
While Azimut is the first major builder to hold an online show, it follows other online events, including the virtual Palm Beach Boat Show that starts Thursday, and a series of events by Denison Yachts, Burgess Yachts and Fraser Yachts to reproduce a boat show environment.
The Azimut Virtual Lounge will serve as the boat show portal, but it will also remain a central knowledge base. It offers participants virtual tours, technical information and educational videos. Other features include in-depth articles, live events, behind-the scenes videos and insights into topics ranging from designers to technological solutions.
Azimut has been busy over the last month creating content for the boat shows. “One of the benefits of living through this period is that everyone is coming up with new ideas,” says Lantero. “We found a good liaison with some of our dealers who helped us find ways to create fresh content in a much shorter time. And, of course, we’re all used to doing video calls these days, so the Live Chats will not be a stretch.”
Clients interested in a yacht will go through Live Chat with a dealer or sales person. For those considered premium clients, Azimut will have one-on-one tours on specific yachts, hosted by product managers who can provide more information about the yachts. “This not only provides a more personalized experience, but it lets the client get answers to specific questions they might have about technical elements,” says Lantero.
The Virtual Lounge will remain in place, even when the e-Boat Shows have gone and physical boat shows return. “Our clients are interacting digitally with other product lines in their lives, so it makes sense for us to shift more resources into digital,” Lantero says. “They want more than just a basic presentation. They want insights into the products, so they can achieve specific technical goals with their boats. They are already learning as much as they can digitally before coming to us, so why not give them more up front?”