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Benefits of Joining RIA

Our non-profit organization provides exclusive membership benefits strategically targeted to strengthen the community and business success within our network, as well as within the Specialty Running Retail Channel as a whole.

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    Retailer Benefits

    NEW Freight Program - Save 35% Annually*

    Introducing the RIA’s new, premier member benefit - a discounted shipping program that will provide an average of 35% savings on annual freight costs, which translates into higher profits for your store. Under the program, retail members will receive substantial discounts with UPS Small Package on incoming/outgoing freight, third party dropships, and return freight.

    We saw significant savings right away! Our accounts payable manager actually thought there was something wrong with an invoice because the freight was so low. (Click to read full testimonial).

    —John Benedict - Playmaker’s, Okemos, Michigan

    Professional Development – Don’t Just Stay Competitive, Excel as a Business Owner

    As an RIA member, you will have access to face-to-face educational summits and complimentary webinars that offer industry best-practices and insight to keep you on the cutting-edge as a business owner.

    RICS’ education content has proven to be receptive to our ideas. We like working with people that want to see us succeed. ~ Eric Ott, Owner, Geneva Running Outfitters

    We love RICS because of the customer service and education they provide. Their retail webinars are terrific. ~ Brendan Barret, Owner, Sayville-Smithtown Running Co

    THANK YOU for hosting the buying class. It helped me so much! My cash flow is better!! I am starting to look at and understand all the reports in RICS and making much smarter buying decisions. My turns have increased and I am rarely out of key sizes. Justin’s spreadsheets are the best! What a difference it has made in my life—less stress, less time spent blindly buying! ...the increased volume will help me increase my profit margins.  I am just feeling grateful for all the support, so I thought I would let you know. ~ Kim Hall, Totally Running and Walking

    Free and Discounted Services – Members-Only Ways to Save Money

    We know small businesses are always looking for ways to tighten the ship. Becoming a member means saving money on business services like credit card processing, POS terminals, and free consulting from our commercial leasing partner.

    When it came time for me to sign a new lease, I was nervous that my rent would skyrocket. I reached out to RIA for help, and they introduced me to Rich Aires of ESR Commercial. Rich gladly offered his time to educate me on my current lease, CAM, and all the comps in my area. We were able to negotiate free rent for upgrades and no increases for the first two years. I doubt that would have happened without his guidance. ~ Kim Hall - Totally Running and Walking - Cumming, Georgia

    Free Market Intelligence – Make Better Buying Decisions

    In partnership with the running channel’s leading research firm, Sports Marketing Surveys, RIA retail members receive market share and product trend data free of charge – enabling retailers to make smart, effective buying decisions.

    Retail Dashboard – Increase Your Profitability

    This highly-detailed planning tool allows retailers to better manage their business. The dashboard is a sophisticated, yet simple-to-use, block of linked spreadsheets that help you create product assortments, manage inventory, analyze daily sales, set goals, make smart buying decisions and most importantly, improve cash flow.

    The biggest improvement for us...has been in managing inventory. We have eliminated our unproductive SKUs, allowing us to invest more in the merchandise that has worked well, as well as pick up a few new items to keep the store fresh.

    —Bruce Haines at Aardvark Sports Shop

    National Run Safety Month and Lace Up Local – Increase Your Local Market Visibility

    These two online initiatives offer programming packed full of plug and play assets designed to market your store locally with content that draws customers.

    Advocacy – The RIA Has Your Back

    The RIA is committed to helping our members remain competitive in today’s digital world. We are currently the ONLY organization that actively promotes and supports the specialty running channel.

    RIA Think Tank – Industry Insight at Your Fingertips

    This member forum enables peer-sharing on relevant topics, as well as access to information from fellow members. Formerly known as the RIA List Serv, the RIA Think Tank, is a platform that allows you to send email communications to the entire membership base.

    Brand Benefits

    Access Retailers - Valuable Contacts

    The RIA website is designed to provide you with improved access to our retail members, and more importantly, allow them improved access to you.   

    Brand Visibility – Sponsorship Opportunities 

    As a member, you have the opportunity to get exposure to over 300 specialty run retailers across the country through sponsoring various RIA activities and events (professional development summits and training seminars). There are also opportunities for visibility on the RIA website via banner ads and sponsored content to support new product or initiative launches like National Running Safety Month.  

    Discounted Services – Members-Only Ways to Save Money

    Our goal is to provide discounts on services that members typically use, to provide savings that is equal or greater than the cost of membership. One of the most valuable discounts is on market research from Sports Marketing Surveys.

    Professional Development + Education

    The RIA works hard to keep brand members on the cutting edge of topics like MAP research and brand protection. We do this through hosting free, members-only webinars on a monthly basis with associate members like Vorys to cover a variety of business topics. In addition, you can get one-on-one connections with industry experts through the RIA network. Brand members also receive valuable, ad hoc communications about new tools and industry developments. 

    Communicate with Retailers - RIA Bulletin Board

    We're proud to introduce an exciting new communication benefit in the form of the RIA Bulletin Board. This is your platform for promoting, informing, and marketing to RIA’s retail members. It’s free to use for brand and associate members and you can post as often as you would like. It’s also password protected, with access for retailers only, so any information you post will not be seen by your competition. The RIA supports the Bulletin Board by blasting out email notifications encouraging our retail members to check out new postings.   

    Advocacy – The RIA Has Your Back

    The RIA is committed to helping our members remain competitive in today’s economy. We are currently the only organization that actively promotes and supports the specialty running channel. While this doesn't directly affect your business, supporting the RIA supports the efforts that support your retailers.  

    Member Portal – Industry Resources at Your Fingertips

    COMING SOON! A members-only landing page where brands can read content relevant to specialty running retail, download exclusive resources and connect with other members, all in one easy to navigate area within our website.  

    RIA Think Tank – Industry Insight at Your Fingertips

    This member forum enables peer-sharing on relevant topics, as well as access to information from fellow members. Formerly known as the RIA List Serv, the RIA Think Tank, is a platform that allows you to send email communications to the entire membership base.

    Associate Benefits

    Access Retailers - Valuable Contacts

    The RIA website is designed to provide you with improved access to our retail members, and more importantly, allow them improved access to you.   

    Provide Professional Development + Education

    The RIA works hard to keep brand and retail members on the cutting edge of topics that matter to them, thanks to associate members like you. You are able to host free, members-only webinars or in-person meetings with retail members to educate and inform them about topics that encourage the use of your product and service offerings. This is a great way to gain visibility with a multitude of potential customers. Have an idea about how to  

    Brand Visibility – Sponsorship Opportunities 

    As a member, you have the opportunity to get exposure to over 300 specialty run retailers across the country through sponsoring various RIA activities and events (professional development summits and training seminars). There are also opportunities for visibility on the RIA website via banner ads and sponsored content to support new product or initiative launches like National Running Safety Month.  

    Discounted Services – Members-Only Ways to Save Money

    Our goal is to provide discounts on services that members typically use to provide savings that are equal or greater than the cost of membership. One of the most valuable discounts is on market research from Sports Marketing Surveys. Associate members save 50% on industry data that includes a monthly price check report, quarterly retail summaries, participation trend reports (from PAC), dealer trend summaries, and geolocation analysis.  

    Communicate with Retailers - RIA Bulletin Board

    We're proud to introduce an exciting new communication benefit in the form of the RIA Bulletin Board. This is your platform for promoting, informing, and marketing to RIA’s retail members. It’s free to use for brand and associate members and you can post as often as you would like. It’s also password protected, with access for retailers only, so any information you post will not be seen by your competition. The RIA supports the Bulletin Board by blasting out email notifications encouraging our retail members to check out new postings.   

    Advocacy – The RIA Has Your Back

    The RIA is committed to helping our members remain competitive in today’s economy. We are currently the only organization that actively promotes and supports the specialty running channel. While this doesn't directly affect your business, supporting the RIA supports the efforts that support your retailers.  

    Member Portal – Industry Resources at Your Fingertips

    COMING SOON! A members-only landing page where brands can read content relevant to specialty running retail, download exclusive resources and connect with other members, all in one easy to navigate area within our website.  

    RIA Think Tank – Industry Insight at Your Fingertips

    This member forum enables peer-sharing on relevant topics, as well as access to information from fellow members. Formerly known as the RIA List Serv, the RIA Think Tank, is a platform that allows you to send email communications to the entire membership base.

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