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New Trade Organization to Tackle Multibillion-Dollar Market for Tailgating Manufacturers

Tailgating Industry Association (TIA) will focus on strengthening bond between tailgating manufacturers, suppliers and retailers
May 15, 2011

Depending on whose criteria you use, the Tailgating Industry in North America generates between $2 billion and $10 billion in annual retail sales. Some say more. One thing, however, is undeniable—tailgating might be the largest industry without a formal trade organization representing the goals and interests of its manufacturers. Until now.

The Tailgating Industry Association (TIA) has been formed to help promote the companies that offer products and services related to tailgating, and to encourage greater cooperation and coordination between members and retailers. The TIA was officially announced earlier this month and has started to enroll members for 2011–2012. A comprehensive information packet will be mailed to prospective members before the end of May.

"The core tailgater is young, brand-loyal and deeply passionate," says TIA Executive Director Mark Stewart. "For many companies this is their dream consumer. Yet reaching that consumer efficiently has been frustrating and often problematic for corporate America. That is where TIA will focus much of its energy—helping to make the potential of the marketplace more reachable and understandable, and creating a workable interface between member companies and their partners, the tailgating retailers."

Retailers will not be TIA members, he adds, however soon they will be spending a lot of time on the TIA web site, where each member company will have its own Home Page tailored specifically to promote product lines and programs to tailgating retailers.

Stewart has been involved in the sports industry for more than 20 years as a writer, editor and interviewer—and has contributed his insights and expertise to marketing and communications initiatives for the NBA, NFL, NCAA, MLS and NASCAR. He has picked up valuable how-to knowledge from each.

TIA members will be able to utilize TIA branding programs in their
advertising and on their packaging.

According to Stewart, the goal of the manufacturers and suppliers in the Tailgating Industry is to promote and expand their business in a coherent, consistent manner. The TIA will help support its members through communications and marketing assistance, statistical information, and by facilitating strategic partnerships with a wide range of retailers. The TIA will also guide members in utilizing social media to promote their products and events.

"Manufacturers and brands looking for a home in the tailgating marketplace can count on the association to support their business strategies and strengthen their retail partnerships through a wide range of TIA programs," says Stewart. "TIA initiatives will bring much-needed structure to an industry that encompasses more than twenty major consumer product categories, ranging from food, beverages and cooking equipment to automotive and electronics to outerwear and licensed sports apparel. TIA members will include major manufacturers and brands, as well as the smaller, specialized industry innovators that 'feed the need' of retailers with the newest, latest and greatest products and services."

"The formation of the TIA couldn't come at a better time," says Marti Soroka, Director of Member Services and Development. "Tailgating is already a major force at retail, and is poised to become a cultural and commercial juggernaut over the next few years. The only thing missing was an organized and legal entity to represent the interests of the tailgating industry."

For more information on the Tailgating Industry Association, go to tiassn.org or call 888-825-8811.



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