Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Holiday Gift Guide 2011

It's that time of year again!

As the publisher of a network of boating sites, I feel it is my duty to suggest a list of gift ideas for boaters. Of course, it is also a chance to highlight products and services from some of the many contributors and partners I work with throughout the year (MegaYacht News, SkipperTips, Victoria Allman, etc.). And, in the interest of total transparency, it's an opportunity to promote some of the products I sell on my own sites, especially

You may think that the 2nd year of doing something is a little too soon to be calling that thing an "annual", but I am confident the Daily Boater Holiday Gift Guide will be an ongoing tradition. Stay tuned!

So, without any further b.s., here is the announcement about the SECOND ANNUAL Daily Boater Holiday Gift Guide hosted on Pitch Engine (Pitch Engine is a great service for hosting and sharing professional-looking press releases, BTW); and here is the link to the actual Gift Guide itself on 

If you don't hear from me here again before Christmas, I hope you enjoy the holidays!


Friday, November 4, 2011

Hello November

I'm just coming out of 4 full days without power, and my back-up office (Panera Bread on the Berlin Tpke) was shoulder to shoulder with a mix of families and business people getting warm and charging their phones.

Power has now been restored to both home and office, so back to a higher rate of productivity... and on that front, there is news.

BoatU.S. has once again selected BoatNameGear products as their contest-giveaway for all their members for the month of November and (hopefully) beyond. You can see the BNG logo at the bottom of this page:

Also in BoatNameGear news, the transition of e-commerce platforms away from Yahoo and over to Volusion is nearly complete. The new back-end will make an easier store for customers to shop in, and should make managing it easier for me. It will also be less expensive, allowing me to pass more savings on to customers.
* If you'd like to spend 5 minutes and help me test a couple of things on the new site, please send me an email ( No technical expertise is required.

Daily Boater
In other news, the Nautical Sites network continues to add advertisers. Daily Boater (my boating news site) is excited to welcome EdgeWater Power Boats on board. Check their site if you want to help support my business (Just looking at it will help!)

DailyBoater also is now the proud owner of its own facebook page. Please give it a 'like' when you get a chance -

Okay, enough with the requests and updates... there's a lot of work to be done! Thanks to everyone for their encouragement and support!

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Industry Stuff

Went to my first CT Marine Trades Expo yesterday and saw some great presentations. The folks from the Connecticut Marine Trades Association did a good job pulling the day together. Some folks from an Internet services company spent a couple of hours convincing the local marine businesses in the room that they should have a website, and that they should use it to increase their sales. I stuck around for a presentation after lunch which included a panel of boat salespeople from around the state sharing some ideas on how to sell boats in these tough economic times. All four of the panelists described ways in which they really went outside the box to get their boats in front of people, including showing their boats in local parades, at malls and airports, and even at non-nautical fairs such as an apple harvest festival!

The group also stated that they have significantly reduced or completely done away with print advertising; instead they are getting involved in community initiatives, and marketing on the web - placing ads on boating websites such as those in my nautical sites network. Would this be a good place for a shameless plug? You bet! Contact me directly if you'd like to advertise on my boating websites. You'll get a tremendous value for your money, and you'll reach the recreational boaters that are most likely to be interested in products and services like yours.

Readership of the Daily Boater has continued to grow, and I've been trying to give more back to our readers. As such I have engaged a new guest author to write a weekly column for the site. Whether you are a novice sailor or have years of experience, you'll enjoy the insights of John Jamieson. Captain John teaches sailing skippers the no-nonsense cruising skills they need for safer sailing worldwide, and now he shares that experience on Of course, if you want all-Captain-John all the time, sign up for his FREE sailing tips newsletter at You can also become a paying member for instant access to 425+ articles, video tutorials, newsletters, and free eBooks.  The articles that Captain John has contributed to the Daily Boater are available for free at the following link:

On a national note, I have been continuing to try to collaborate with the NMMA, and just this week they placed a link to on their Grow Boating resources site - the website for the organization charged with the task of increasing participation in boating. Here's the link - scroll down to the bottom to see the t-shirt picture and link to BoatNameGear:

I also exhibited for the first time at the Newport Boat Show last month with a booth for BoatNameGear. The weather was beautiful, which helped the crowds come out in pre-recession numbers. I am pleased to report that we put a lot of personalized gear into the hands of folks from the northeast, and met a lot of nice people from not only Rhode Island, but also CT, NY, Mass, New Hampshire and New Jersey. People came from everywhere for this show. I was able to snap a few photos from the Newport show which you can check out here.

I opted not to do the local Norwalk Boat Show the following weekend, and that turned out to be a blessing as the show was practically rained out. Next up: probably Hartford and Boston in 2012.

Hopefully I'll have some updates before then!

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

One Crazy Summer

I haven't posted anything in a while because it truly has been one crazy summer.

Just this morning the Daily Boater was featured in a British boating newsletter, with a nice write-up about our boating news site: Boats On TV Newsletter.

But what really kept me busy this summer was all the exposure that Boat Name Gear has received. The timing couldn't be better, as Boat Name Gear will be exhibiting at the Newport (RI) International Boat Show next month for the first time (if you are going to the show, please let me know via the Boat Name Gear facebook event page:

What exposure? The best kind - inexpensive and widespread. One of our endeavors has even helped encourage people to boat! Over the past few months, Boat Name Gear has been one of a handful of top-brand sponsors of a contest being administered by the NMMA. We are in good company with likes of Sperry Top-Siders and BoatU.S. - all offering prizes to encourage people to invite their friends out boating (Welcome to the Water Contest). We gave away dozens of t-shirts with the "Welcome to the Water" logo across the back, and each of the winner's boat name embroidered on the front-left chest. Also, Boat Name Gear has been in the Sun Sentinal, the Baltimore Sun, and in an editorial article in the Miami Herald.

On top of this, we've been adding a bunch of new products - including environmentally-friendly premium polo shirts, fleece blankets, and sailcloth boat bags.

The other sites in the Nautical Sites network, including, Daily Boater, BoatlinX and the Boat Name Blog,  have been adding advertisers such as Empire Covers.

All that, and we survived Hurricane Tropical Storm Irene - only one of our websites was down ( for a few hours, and yes, we're finding a new web host company), and none of our Internet orders were lost or even delayed. For some pictures of some boats and marinas that were not so lucky, check out our collection on the Daily Boater.

There's more, but there are not many more boating days left this year in the northeast. We'll see you soon in Newport!

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

FirstBoat Adds Boating News Show


Weekly fast-action boating news report to air on

Newington, CT – June 2, 2011 – The premier boating information site for new and experienced boaters,, today announced that it will make “World on Water” available to its visitors. “World on Water” is a weekly news program produced by Boats on TV covering international sailing and powerboat races and events in a fast-paced and visually stimulating format.

This is FirstBoat’s first venture into video programming in its ten-plus years of providing helpful information to boaters that has included articles on buying a boat, getting insurance, boat loans and the basics of boat names. FirstBoat founder Andrew Canepari stated, “World on Water complements First Boat perfectly, providing an engaging show that continues to expand our breadth of content beyond the basics of boating”.

Jeremy Baulf, the managing director of Boats on TV's "World on Water", added, “We are excited to partner with a quality site like FirstBoat to give our TV shows significant exposure to boaters in North America.”

A new episode of World on Water is available for viewing each Friday at:

About is the flagship site of Nautical Sites Media, which publishes a network of websites that provide information and resources to recreational boaters. To learn more about FirstBoat and other properties in the Nautical Sites network, visit

About Boats on TV
Boats on TV, the Web's best Boating TV Channel, is the home of everything to do with water-related activity. It covers all aspects of sailing, racing, cruising, the Volvo Round World Race, TP 52’s, Farr 40’s, 18 Footer Racing, iShares Cup, World Match Racing Tour, Ice Sailing, UK, USA, Australia , Power-boating, Racing and Instruction, P1 Powerboats, Honda Formula 4-Stroke Racing and more. See all this plus historical and special interest videos at

Media Contact: Andrew Canepari, (860) 249-1166,

Thirty Days Later

Seems like an eternity to go without a blog post.  We've gone longer, but a lot has happened over the past month.

A custom shirt from BoatNameGear
First, we've been flat out busy with our two online stores. Taken as a whole, it's the busiest time of year for the two sites. Custom Boat Names is active as people are ordering new boat names for the back of their boat to kick off the season. And Boat Name Gear is hopping for Father's Day... our personalized gear makes great gifts!

We've also done a boat show recently, again exhibiting as Boat Name Gear; this time, it was in Mystic, Connecticut, at a new show called SailQuest Mystic.  The weather was rough, and the crowds were small, but this new event has potential if the organizers keep at it - and the timing (spring, right before Father's Day) and location (on the water at historic Mystic Seaport) are perfect for our business, so I hope it continues. While the sun was out, and without many attendees, I was able to snap a few pictures of both the newer boats on display for the boat show as well as the historic boats that are part of the Seaport. Thanks again to the folks at WindCheck Magazine for their effort with the show.

The weather was beautiful on the 1st day of the show...

On other fronts, we are:
 - putting out a press release (in just a few minutes) announcing a partnership that allows us to put some intense video of sailing news on FirstBoat.

 - sponsoring a huge contest with the NMMA to promote their new Welcome to the Water campaign (Look for details any day now on the NMMA's Discover Boating facebook page). BoatNameGear is the sponsor, and is in good company with the likes of Sperry and Bass Pro Shops.

 - getting close to finally launching a new boating site or two, and continuing to expand our existing sites.

 - seeing a lot of activity on advertising, and we've even closed a few deals, so be sure to visit our sponsors anywhere you see a new banner or text link. Contact me (via email or the contact link to the right) if you want to get in on the action, and by that I mean buy some advertising!

 - now under contract to exhibit (in our BoatNameGear booth) at the Newport (RI) Boat Show in September, 2011.

I'm sure there's more, but gotta get back to the press release I promised you.

Tight lines,


Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Thanks for the Mentions

Last week, we announced the most popular boat names of the year via a press release from FirstBoat, and we were pleased to see the top ten list get so much press from other publications around the web.  Here are a few of the first that we'd like to thank:

Messing About in Boats

Boater Life Online

Boating Industry Magazine

Boat Safe

North American Sailor


If you're planning mentioning FirstBoat or the top ten boat names in an upcoming article, or if you did and I missed it, please email me.

It also did not go unnoticed that several of our FaceBook and Twitter friends shared our list. There were too many to mention all of them, but here are a few folks you should follow if you tweet:






Top Notch Marine and RV

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Our Most Popular Boat Names of 2011

(The following press release went out this morning. It was a lot of fun to sift through the thousands and thousands of boat names in coming up with this list. Hope you have as much fun reading it as we did writing it... Enjoy!)

Most Popular Boat Names of 2011
The top ten most popular boat names of 2011 confirm that boaters are seeking serenity

Newington, CT - April 19, 2011 –, the premier boating information site for new and experienced boaters, today announced the most popular boat names of 2011. A trend seems to have emerged from this year’s list that demonstrates how boaters enjoy their time on the water. “Boat names like Serenity, Happy Ours, Family Time and Just Chillin dominated this year’s top ten,” stated FirstBoat publisher Andrew Canepari. “It is clear from these names, perhaps now more than ever, that boating really provides people with a way to relax and make the most of their time with family and friends,” Canepari added.

The list is compiled annually by FirstBoat in collaboration with - where boaters design their own boat name lettering online, and - the leading retailer of personalized gear and gifts for boaters. FirstBoat is also the home of the original Boat Name Machine, featuring over 100,000 randomly generated boat names. The Boat Name Machine and other boat naming resources are available online at

Following are the top ten most popular boat names for 2011:
  1. Serenity (In addition to “Serenity” we saw variations such as “Serenity Now!” of Seinfeld fame, as well as clever misspellings including “Sea-Renity”)
  2. Happy Ours (Time was a common theme in boat names this year. Variations on this boat name included “Happy Hours” and “Happy Hour”)
  3. Feelin' Nauti (This one surprised us when it rose to the top five, as there are so many other popular boat names that include “Nauti” in the name)
  4. Family Time (Another variation of the Time theme that we saw again and again. There were many other boat names that referenced Time that came close to the top ten.)
  5. Liberty (Always a favorite, we also saw variations such as Miss Liberty, Lady Liberty, and Liberty Belle)
  6. Black Pearl (Every boater feels like a pirate sometimes. Just plain “Pearl” was popular as well, but it didn’t crack our top ten)
  7. Andiamo (Let’s Go! A quick internet search will show you that this is not only a popular name for boats, but also for Italian restaurants in America)
  8. Knot On Call (Several boat names used the word “Knot” cleverly, but only this one made the top ten)
  9. High Maintenance (Yes, this describes most boats very accurately)
  10. Just Chillin (Looks like relaxing is on the mind of even the younger generation of boaters)
About is the flagship site of Nautical Sites Media, which publishes a network of websites that provide information and resources to recreational boaters. To learn more about FirstBoat and other properties in the Nautical Sites network, visit or call 800-306-8708.


Media Contact: Andrew Canepari, (860) 249-1166,

Thursday, March 17, 2011

TakeMeFishing Hotspots Map

It is nice to be in good company with the Recreational Boating and Fishing Foundation...

State & Industry Partners Clamor for Hotspots Map

If you're looking for our TakeMeFishing maps on our sites, check - A good example is on our Connecticut boating page.

Monday, February 7, 2011

Boat Name Gear at the Boat Shows

Had a great time and, more importantly, some success, at the Hartford Boat Show last weekend.  Fortunately, Connecticut's wintriest winter ever took a break from the snow for long enough to allow boating enthusiasts from across southern New England to attend the show.

Of all the Nautical Sites properties, I have been exhibiting as Boat Name Gear at the shows to offer personalized products to boaters. I did the 2011 Hartford show for the 2nd year in a row in order to get the web store's brand out to local boating families, and we were very well received. The show organizers claim 11,000 people came through the door and that Sunday saw bigger crowds than usual. Everybody I know was home shoveling snow off their roof in preparation of the next big storm. That may have kept the crowds at bay on Saturday... it's hard to know for sure.

I was pleased to have met several existing Boat Name Gear customers and I even saw a few folks that I remembered from the 2010 show. A few people also came by the booth after seeing my offer on the Daily Boater to "mention 'FirstBoat' and get a free hat or t-shirt".
Me in front of my booth. Photo by Randy Kessler of Barnum Financial Group
Obviously the boats were not as big in Hartford as they were at the New York Boat Show (review, pics) a couple of weeks ago, but there were some nice Sea Rays on display from Bassett Marine, as well as a large assortment of cruisers, cuddy cabins, bow riders and deck boats, fishing boats and the like from marinas and dealers who were mostly from CT, with a few from RI and Mass.

Here are a few more photos from the show, and there are dozens more on the FirstBoat page on Facebook.

The largest (and smallest) watercraft at the show.
There was sort of a boat show within the boat show.
Rock and Roll... Book a fishing trip at
Some fish boats and an affordable Larson bowrider from
One more of my booth - with some people around it this time.
I have a LOT more photos from the show - mostly taken Sunday morning before the doors opened - on the FirstBoat page on Facebook. You don't have to log-in or have a Facebook account to check them out, but if you do, please click "Like" on the page.

Next up for Boat Name Gear in February and March: The Northeast Fishing (and hunting) Expo in Hartford, and the big New England Boat Show in Boston. Hope to see you there!

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

We're Hiring

If you follow this blog, you are probably aware that Nautical Sites Media is a growing network of boating websites.

In this network are a few content websites...,, BoatNameBlog and BoatlinX are the bigger ones. More are being launched in 2011. These content websites get a lot of traffic, all of the visitors are boaters, and the sites have advertising space that needs to be sold. That's where you come in.

By the way, I mentioned those are "content websites" as opposed to e-commerce websites. Our other sites and are e-commerce websites which are designed to sell products, and do not normally display advertisements.

Anyway, I am building a team of sales reps around the United States to sell ads on the content sites in our network. This is a great opportunity, as there is no network of boating sites like ours. Advertisers have the chance to reach a broad spectrum of boating enthusiasts, many of whom just bought a boat (and need new stuff!) or are planning to buy a boat within the next 12 months.

Advertisers are starting to promote their products and services again, and they need to know that placing their ads on our network is a smart way to bring their businesses back to where they once were... and beyond. Speaking of beyond, organizations that advertise with Nautical Sites Media don't just get banner ads thrown around our sties... they also get a partner in us that can help them get their message out across Facebook, Twitter and other social media outlets that they don't have the time or knowledge to do themselves.

As a Nautical Sites sales representative, you would be an independent agent - working for yourself, making your own hours, working from your home office (or your local Starbucks) and traveling to marine-focused businesses and boat shows. The gig is commission-only, but you will be paid a generous percentage of your sale plus bonuses. You will also have the chance to be in on the ground floor of a fast-growing company in the fun and exciting boating industry. If you already sell ads independently for another publication, consider adding Nautical Sites Media to the options you offer your clients.

If you are interested, please send your resume to jobs (at)

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

On Take Me Fishing

I was excited to open the email I got this morning from the Recreational Boating and Fishing Foundation (RBFF) when I saw the subject line: Adds Live News Feed, Expands Coverage of Boating and Fishing
Excited over an email? Very. I knew my conversations with the RBFF over the past few months were panning out and that my Daily Boater blog was among the first few news sources the RBFF had selected for a content partner in their new boating and fishing news section of their site. I knew the Daily Boater feed was already live and sending stories to the website. Now they were sending out a press release to promote their new news area, and probably mentioning their partners in said press release.

I was, of course, a little disappointed that they didn't mention the Daily Boater by name in the press release. I guess they couldn't list everybody, and mentioning partners like ESPN and Field and Stream were probably the safe choice. And actually, listing those household brands will bring more people to the article and more people to the news feed, and thus more people to So it's still a big win.

And of course, I'm very excited to be part of the launch of this service on, and hoping that syndication deals like this continue to spread the word about my growing network of nautical sites.

By the way, the RBFF's press release failed to include the link to the actual news feed page they were announcing, and I had trouble finding it from the website, so here it is in one click:

I wonder if ESPN and Field and Stream are mentioning this news on any of their sites.

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Everybody Loves NY

I stopped by the New York National Boat Show on Thursday to check out the boats, as well as to scout out story ideas, advertising leads and the competition. There are more pics on the FirstBoat Facebook page, but I included a few below, and also a write-up on the Daily Boater.

Love the classic look of Silverton Yachts

This seems like bad business. Shouldn't they have at least shown up and talked about their product?

Deadliest Catch in the house. These guys were a riot.

Chaparrals always look sharp.

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Providence (and more) Boat Shows

I attended the Providence Boat Show yesterday (see my Daily Boater article for a few boat pics) and met lots of great folks. Attendance was not great when I was there (and I heard it was even worse on Thursday), but I was there on Friday afternoon during business hours when people who can afford boats were working at their day jobs; I suspect traffic will pick up over the weekend.

Hopefully I'll be seeing many of the exhibitors I met again over the next few weeks when I exhibit (for BoatNameGear) at the Hartford Boat Show, the Northeast Fishing Expo, and the big New England Boat Show in Boston.

Not exhibiting, but I'll be doing a similar drop-in at the New York Boat Show next week and will try to bring back some stories and pictures... Stay tuned.

Monday, January 3, 2011

Welcome 2011

It's hard to believe that BoatNameGear just celebrated its 4th Christmas in business (the site's first online order came at the end of November 2007), and the site has seen a pretty good increase in sales each Christmas over the previous year. Flat would have been good given the economy, so north of 150% was especially sweet. Thank you to everyone who helped give BoatNameGear a big boost this holiday season and into the New Year. It was great to see so many familiar names of customers (and their boats - love those boat names!) come through the site's order system this November and December... and of course it was nice to see so many new customers come on board as well.

If you shopped at BoatNameGear for the first time this year, how did you find us? Most customers I asked on the phone said something along the lines of "the internet" or "I did a search". Uh huh. We were featured in several online and print publications for the holiday season, and we can't thank those folks enough for mentioning us. Let me know if you saw BoatNameGear mentioned in any of these places or by any of these authors, or somewhere else:

Christy Johnson, in the Florida Keys Fishing Examiner

Ericka Watson, the Powerboat Guide

Tom Richardson, the co-director and host of BoatingLocal

Marine Product Reviews

WindCheck Magazine


A special thanks to our first affiliate across the pond, New Freebooters.

And last but not least, although I'm probably forgetting some, the folks we mentioned in our first Daily Boater Gift Guide, who reciprocated with tweets, facebook posts and newsletter mentions, including SeaSquared Charters, MegaYachtNews, Autotether, and Caron's Beach House.

Please follow BoatNameGear on Facebook to get new product announcements, special offers, contests, and to find out which boat shows we'll be at in 2011!