Jim Rogers spent 20 years in the casino business before becoming president and CEO of Kampgrounds of America (KOA), and he believes the RV business could learn a lot from the gaming industry.
Specifically, Rogers was referring to more creative marketing.
Rogers presented his remarks Sunday (Sept. 23) during a panel discussion on the future of the RV industry at the Recreation Vehicle Dealers Association (RVDA) Convention/Expo in Las Vegas.
“(Baby) Boomers need to get inside an RV,” Rogers said. “They think they (RVs) are all the same (on the inside). I’ve spoken to many Boomers who have the money but they don’t really know what an RV is.”
“Hosted RVs” at high traffic areas, such as shopping malls, is one way to get people inside an RV, Rogers said. Other possibilities include fashion shows at campgrounds, renting RVs for bachelor parties, reunions and for use as prom buses, he added.
“We (KOA) would love to work with you (dealers) to get more RVs in the neighborhood,” he added.
Gaming industry can be viewed as a source of inspiration for the RV business because, now, many properties in Las Vegas get more revenue from food, hotel rooms, retail shops and other services than from their casinos, Rogers said.
The casino industry also was able to introduce riverboat gambling and casinos on Indian reservations “to expand gaming across the country.” As a result, more people learned the casino games, which encouraged them to visit the gaming industry’s Mecca, Las Vegas, Rogers said.