b'SMART OPERATIONSCOVID and Adapting to Changing TimesReach Out to Non-Campers example, just as hotel guests might seasonal or transient campers. WhenDespite the fact that airlines and the rely on room service to order meals, occupancy rates are high, there is nohotel industry are making serious at- you might offer deliveries of things like question that transient sites generatetempts to persuade the public that ice,firewoodandevenpizza.You more income than seasonal sites. OnPeterthey have made changes to safeguard might also want to consider advance the other hand, seasonal sites repre-Pelland the health and well-being of their pas- check-ins, express check-outs, escort- sent stable income that is as safe andsengers and guests, some of the last ingnewgueststotheirsitesand secure as money in the bank. In 2020,things that most people want to do at adding branded face masks and sani- with phased business reopenings inthis time would be to take a non-es- tizer products to your store inventory. most states, there is no question thatsential flight and stay in a big hotel. predominantlyseasonalorall-sea-If there is one thing that is certain Thereisevenlessdesiretotakea Consider Extending The Season sonal parks fared far better than parkswith respect to the COVID-19 pan- cruise (if the cruise lines were open) or Although experts within the medical thatcaterprimarilytoovernightdemic, it is that it has almost univer- to be a part of a large indoor event (if and infectious disease communities guests. In particular, parks that relysally inflicted a negative impact upon most of them were not cancelled out are currently predicting a 75% likeli- upon their proximity to major nearbysmall businessescampgrounds in- of respect for both common sense and hood of a second wave of outbreaks in attractionshavebeenhurtbadlycluded. It has been a wild and bumpy the public welfare.) The hotel industry the fallbased upon previous pan- while many of those attractions haveride that is far from over as I pen this is adapting what are called enhanced demics in 1918 and 1957. Should this remainedclosed.Hurtevenworsecolumn in late June of 2020. In most cleaning protocols to sanitize guest not occur, you might want to consider have been parks that cater to a highlyinstances, the timing of the pandemic rooms, common areas and key touch extending your camping season be- mobileclientele,locatedmidwaycould not have been worse, delaying points.Forthetimebeing,guests yond its usual closing date. This repre- alongahighwayconnectingtwoopenings and leading to a wave of should not expect breakfast buffets, sents another means of compensating major attractions.cancellations at the start of the season. welcome drinks or mini bars, and no- for some of your likely losses both at NowmightbetherighttimetoCampgrounds that were forced to body wants to ride on a crowded ele- the start and height of your season. consider converting a number of yourdelay their openings longer than those vator with a man who is not wearing a The interest in camping is less likely to parks overnight sites into seasonalin most other states, understandably mask and who just sneezed. wane at the end of the summer as may sites. With that same desire for safetyupset that their ability to generate in- With all of the hesitancies that are havebeenthecaseinpastyears. andsecurity,manycampersarecomehadbeenseverelyhindered, challenging the hotel industry, camp- Schools may or may not be reopening, showing a first-time interest in be-may end up faring better in the long groundsarerightlyperceivedasa and spectator sports like NCAA and coming seasonals. Promote the avail-run compared to parks in states that much safer lodging alternative, partic- NFL football are likely to either be can- abilityofthesenewsitesonyourjumped the gun at reopening. With ularly those that offer full-service cab- celled or have restricted attendance. In website and social media, not only forseveral Northeastern statesparticu- ins and other accommodations that normal years, unless your park was lo- 2021, but offering pro-rated opportu-larly New York, New Jersey, Connecti- appeal to people who have been non- cated in close proximity to an NCAA nities for the current season to yourcut and Massachusettsrepresenting campers. Of course, you need to prac- college campus or sports stadium, the existing guests. If you have transientearly hot spots for the virus, some of tice those same enhanced cleaning seasonalinterestintheseevents guests who are returning for multiplethe less densely populated states may protocols that apply to hotel rooms. tendedtodivertaportionofyour stays, reach out to them personally tobe hitting their peaks at the height of But you should embrace the opportu- guestsawayfromcamping.Those offer them one or more incentives tothe summer camping seasona situ- nity to be able to reach out to a new guests might now be quite willing to becomeseasonals.Sometimesitisationthatcouldendupbeingfar category of guests who are new to the continue their camping seasons, par- simply a matter of asking them whatworse than a delayed opening. camping experience. This might mean ticularly after getting off to a late start. it would take on your part to persuadeWherever you fit in the continually stepping up your offerings of services them to make the decision.evolvingmap,thereisnoquestion and amenities that might have been Recruit Seasonal Campers When it is necessary to adapt tothat you are going to have to get cre- expected in a more conventional set- There has always been somewhat changing times, it is important to beative in order to at least partially offset ting, many of which offer new oppor- ofaquandarybetweenwhethera flexibleandtothinkofinnovativean overall loss of anticipated income. tunitiesforaddedincome.For park should have a greater number of ways to safeguard your income, prof-itability and your ultimate businesssurvival.PeterPellandistheCEOof Pelland Advertising, a company thathe founded in 1980 that has beenserving the family camping industryfor nearly 40 years. His company spe-cializes in building fully responsivewebsites, along with producing a fullrange of four-color process print ad-vertising,forclients.LearnmoreaboutPellandAdvertisingathttps://pelland.com/ or see its ad inthis issue. WCMWere more than just the leadingcampground industry trade publication. Check us out Online! The latest industry news Campground-related videos Digital editionsSign up to get daily breaking news!Give Us A Click Today!woodallscm.com10 -August 2020Woodalls Campground Management'