Page 1 Page 2 Page 3 Page 4 Page 5 Page 6 Page 7 Page 8 Page 9 Page 10 Page 11 Page 12 Page 13 Page 14 Page 15 Page 16 Page 17 Page 18 Page 19 Page 20 Page 21 Page 22 Page 23 Page 24 Page 25 Page 26 Page 27 Page 28 Page 29 Page 30 Page 31 Page 32 Page 33 Page 34 Page 35 Page 36 Page 37 Page 38 Page 39 Page 40 Page 41 Page 42 Page 43 Page 44 Page 45 Page 46 Page 47 Page 48 Page 49 Page 50 Page 51 Page 52 Page 53 Page 54 Page 55 Page 56 Page 57 Page 58 Page 59 Page 60 Page 61 Page 62 Page 63 Page 64 Page 65 Page 66 Page 67 Page 68 Page 69 Page 70 Page 71 Page 72 Page 73 Page 74 Page 75 Page 76 Page 77 Page 78 Page 79 Page 8024 - January 2017 Woodall’s Campground Management toRVmessagingthat,combined,repre- sent 40% of the US population. “This is the largest and most com- prehensive consumer research study we’vedoneinadecade,”saidGoRVing co-chairman and Airstream Inc. Presi- dent Bob Wheeler. “The research pointsustoemergingmarketsandtech- nologiestoembraceforourmessageto resonate with the right consumers. The new data will inform us how to keep currentownershappywhilealsodriving new, motivated customers into dealer showrooms.” The Nielsen results will help the Go RVing campaign hone its aggressive marketingefforts,co-chairTomStinnett, asouthernIndianaRVdealer,toldtheoverflow audience of more than 1,100. “We know the appeal of RVing increases exponentially with non-owners when they engage with our products and actual owners whoarepassionateaboutRVing,”Stinnettsaid. Stinnettalsonotedthegrowingvalueofso- cial media in reaching potential customers. “We know the up-and-coming consumers are a sharing society,” he said. “By turning our messaging into authentic, sharable experiences, Go RVing is building trust and desire within the marketplace.” The GoRVing blog saw traffic double this year and the number of unique visitors nearly tripled,Stinnettsaid,andpageviewsjumpedby 140% — evidence, he said, that the effort is reaching its target market. Ofcourse,“ourwebsitestilldoesmostofthe heavy lifting. In the first three quarters of 2016, we’ve seen 2.6 million visits to GoRVing.com,” Stinnett continued. “That’s up 26% over the same period last year.” Chairman of the RVIA PR Committee Chad Reece,directorofmarketingforWinnebagoIn- dustriesInc.,discussedtheimportanceofpub- lic relations in an evolving media environment. “The media landscape is being terraformed by the Internet and mobile devices,” Reece told attendees. “The staggering diversity of media outlets is both challenge and opportunity.” Reece noted the PR team had maintained a successful media relations program with nim- ble adjustments to the changing environment, and working to secure third-party endorse- ments of the RV lifestyle from mainstream media and from new media. Because of the results of the Nielsen study, the RV industry is planning to accelerate its strong momentum by focusing its marketing efforts on three groups of consumers most likely to buy — namely “Active Family Adven- turers,” “Nature Lovers” and “Kid-Free Adult Adventurers.”Combined,thisgroupofpotential RVers represents 40% of U.S. households. In general, the research showed that con- sumers in all three segments have favorable viewstowardsRVsandtheRVlifestyle.Justlike RV owners, they like to take road trips and see RVingasaconvenientwaytoexplorethecoun- try, participate in outdoor activities and spend timewithfamilyandfriends.Comfort,cost,and safety are the top factors considered by prospective purchasers. Looking at current RV owners, the study found that they love their RVs and the RV lifestyle.WhenaskedabouttheiroverallRVex- periencewiththeirRVs,88%rankeditasgood, very good or excellent, and the majority said that their expectations of RV ownership were either met or exceeded. RV owners, the re- search showed, take an average of five trips per year in their RV to a variety of destinations. While owners say that the most important part of RV travel is having an opportunity to enjoynature,75%saythatit’simportanttohave Internet connectivity while traveling by RV. One of the highlights of the RVIA show, meanwhile, was a keynote address at the Outlook Breakfast by Capt. Chesley “Sully” Sullenberger, the famed pilot of the U.S. Air- ways Flight 1549 that had to crash land in the Hudson River in New York City Jan. 15, 2009. Sullenberger, the subject of a recent movie starring Tom Hanks, talked about meeting Hanks and director Clint Eastwood, and of coursewentintodetailabouttheeventsofthat short, perilous flight. Sullenberger also drove homelessonsoncharacterandcivicresponsi- bility, about preparedness and practice and howthosecansaveanyendeavorinanunfore- seen emergency — like an airliner striking a flock of geese and losing both engines. “Becausewesetclearprioritiesinthissitu- ation, we could succeed,” Sullenberger said. Some other tidbits of wisdom from his engaging 45-minute address: •“Innovationmeanschangingbeforeyou’re forced to — by competition, by regulation, by circumstance.” • “Be vigilant. Avoid complacency.” •“Don’tbeautocratic.Changeyourculture.” • “Avoid the drift toward expedience, that temptation to cut corners.” • “In aviation, ‘Just good enough’ isn’t.” One other key item to emerge out of Louisville was a growing commitment by the RVIA,theNationalRecreationVehicleDealers Association (RVDA) and RVDA of Canada to improve the customer experience for RVers by upgrading their ability as an industry to keep consumershappyontheroadandaddressthe most pressing issues around the end-user experience. “All parties agreed that while significant in- vestment and improvements have occurred in theareasofpartsandservice,thereisstillwork to do,” the organizations said in a joint state- ment at the Louisville show. That followed a Nov. 29 meeting involving the three trade associations and a host of the industry brand leaders — OEMs, suppliers and distributors. Tomoveaheadwiththatcommitment,they’ve agreed to invest in a third-party facilitated process to identify the primary actions needed tobestimproveservice-relatedissues,including agoodlonglookatpartsavailability.“Ourindus- try remains committed to the continued growth andprosperityoftheRVindustry,andthisinvest- mentisthenextstepinthejourneytoimproving the RV consumer experience,” the statement concluded.—JustinLeighty WCM The campfire lounge was a new feature that allowed attendees an informal setting to learn new inforrma- tion, including from folks in the campground sector. Champion Athens Park personnel welcomed several campground attendees to its display park model RV during the RVIA show.