New packaging, new products created to drive business
Great Day, Inc. has been involved in the powersports aftermarket industry for more than a decade, but as the company develops more products, it is also looking to increase its brand presence.
“Right now we’re in the pioneering days of our brand because if you want to market your company, if you want to be known not only to dealers but to investors around the world, they have to know who Great Day is,” said Ilar Meeks, national sales manager and vice president of Great Day. “You can’t be what I call ‘cannibalized’ by other people. They have to recognize you as someone that’s a player, that is here to stay, not just looking the part, but you’re actually here, wanting to do business, and you’re successful with your sales efforts. And that’s what we strive to do.”
Great Day was founded in Tallulah, La., in 2003. The Meeks family had a history of manufacturing, as Meeks’ father, Paul Meeks, had been in the tree stand manufacturing business since 1979. As those same hunting customers were using ATVs and beginning to use side-by-sides, the Meeks family started a new company aimed at providing utility aftermarket products for ATVs, UTVs and pickup trucks.
“We were making some basic powersports accessories at the time, which were staples of the industry — loading ramps, sprayers, a few gun racks — and we slowly evolved into a major player with our Rumble Seat and some of the other items that none of the other companies have to offer,” Ilar Meeks told Powersports Business at the Tucker Rocky Brand Expo.
Though Great Day’s rear-facing, two-passenger Rumble seat is one of the company’s most popular products, along with its gun racks, the company has also developed bow racks, utility racks, spare tire carriers, hitch stabilizers and more for the powersports market. Its latest product is the Sporting Clays UTV Gun Rack, which carries four guns.
Attracting customers and dealers
Customers are drawn to the product because of how universal much of the items are and how each piece fits on the unit. Also, most of the products are lightweight and constructed of aircraft-grade aluminum.
“They also like the ease of installation, the ease of use and price. Our overhead gun racks, for example, when compared to other gun rack companies out there in the powersports industry, ours don’t require any drilling; you can put them in in less than 30 seconds. It doesn’t scratch the vehicle; you can take it out,” Meeks said.
Dealers also like the ease of installation, not only as a selling point, but because it provides an easy opportunity to accessorize units on the showroom floor.
“With the Rumble Seat specifically, they can order a Rumble Seat, pull it out of a box, put it together, put it in the bed of a Ranger or whatever type vehicle they’re carrying on display in their showroom floor, and then they have consumers come in and make purchases, not only of a vehicle, but kind of a la carte. They buy the Rumble Seat as an accessory, which is a great way to entice [customers], to get that dealer to get more sales and also to get the consumer to engage in the product. So that’s one thing that we really, really try to encourage because it helps sales,” Meeks explained.
Great Day’s products are distributed through Tucker Rocky, Parts Unlimited, Automatic Distributors, McDonald ATV and MTA Distributing, among others. And the company requires no minimum orders from its dealers.
“One of our biggest advantages that you won’t see with some of the bigger powersports manufacturers is that you can order a quantity of one,” Meeks said. “And we’ll also drop-ship for you, whereas some of the bigger outfits, they’re going to make you order a container or half a container, and you’re going to end up paying a lot for shipping from China, and you may be overloaded with product you don’t need. Whereas [with] Great Day, you need one Power Loader, we send you one Power Loader at dealer pricing.”
Building the brand
Though Great Day’s brand recognition has grown enough to draw the attention of distributors, dealers, big box stores such as Bass Pro Shops and many loyal customers, the company is looking to build on that reputation and develop better branding within the industry.
As a means to that end, Great Day recently added full-color lithographic labels to its boxes, which were previously all-white.
“If you were to walk past that in a store, a Honda store, or whatever type dealer, and it was a white box, and it didn’t have anything on it, you would say, ‘That’s just a white box; I really don’t know what’s in there,’” Meeks said of the previous packaging. “So the label, just like in any industry, it has eye appeal; it allows you to buy the product. It allows you to be more engaged with the product.”
The idea for adding color labels came from a Mississippi dealer who sells thousands of dollars in Great Day products annually. Though the dealer was already successful with the brand, he told Great Day that he would move more of the product if the packaging showed what was inside. Meeks agreed.
“We worked with our printers and our print design companies to actually come up with the most effective label for the price that we could come up with, so that when someone’s walking around in a powersports dealership, they’re going to walk by, and they’re going to see Kolpin, and they’re going to see River Road, and they’re going to see QuadBoss and all these different brands and the Pure Polaris brand. Well, now they’re going to see Great Day. Whereas they might have used to have seen a white box, they’re going to see Great Day, right next to Kolpin and everyone else, so we’re a player now,” Meeks said.
That packaging, along with improvements to the company’s catalog, are expected to go a long way in building the Great Day brand.
“It’s very, very important because if people don’t know the little Great Day sunshine and the name and the image, they don’t know our brand,” Meeks said. “They just know Rumble Seat. Well, they don’t know who makes the Rumble Seat. It could be made by Kolpin or somebody in China or somebody in Texas. … But this is the Great Day Rumble Seat, the Great Day overhead gun rack. It’s just like the difference in Mercedes and Ford and Chevy, so it just gives you that brand recognition.”