TM0703_Market Focus, Motorcycle Enthusiasts
The 270,000 AMA member-riders earn an average household income of $84,000, and own 2.6 motor-cycles. They spend an average of $809 a year on maintenance items and do about 60 percent of the work on their own bike. They also spend roughly $1,200 a year on apparel and accessories.
"Our members ride more than 5,200 miles a year," says Sweet. "As a result, they require a lot of products."
More Than Just Hogs
Thanks to the wide swath motorcycle enthusiasts cut demographically, and based on significant buying power, experts say there are many product offers that could be viable.
Financial and investment services, insurance, automotive products and services, audio/visual equipment, outdoor merchandise, and male-oriented catalogs round out the list of appropriate offer pitches for this market.
The outdoorsmen peripheral market particularly is key, many attest, because it falls in line with the lifestyle motorcycle enthusiasts have adopted. "[Motorcycle enthusiasts] are outdoor people who enjoy the weekends, their own free time, the fresh air," says Sweet. "Otherwise they wouldn't be on a motorcycle."
Sweet says the AMA often receives requests from outdoor, camping and hunting catalogers to use its list. The most frequent renter is the National Rifle Association (NRA), he adds.
A Neglected Niche
Even though motorcycle enthusiasts make for attractive prospects on paper, this market has yet to be heavily targeted by mailers.
"Motorcycle owners represent an affluent consumer set," confirms Lori Collins, director of business development, FocusUSA. "But mailers really don't put two and two together. It's the forgotten little niche."
Kanter concurs: "Surprisingly, few companies outside the motorcycle industry have discovered how affluent and active most riders are." Kanter finds the readers of American Iron and RoadBike are very responsive to appropriate direct mail pitches.
Girls Ride Choppers, Too
The Motorcycle Industry Council's national survey of motorcycle owners reveals nearly one out of every 12 U.S. motorcycle owners is female. That's about 8 percent of the nation's motorcycle owners, and the numbers continue to increase.