The Go RVing Coalition received a positive report on the progress of the industry’s Go RVing marketing campaign at its Monday afternoon (June 11) meeting at the Willard InterContinental Hotel in Washington, D.C.
Go RVing’s “Find your AWAY” ads hit the marketplace this spring, setting the stage for a reenergized effort for the program, which is owned by both the Recreation Vehicle Industry Association (RVIA) and the Recreation Vehicle Dealers Association (RVDA).
The new “Away” theme of the campaign, designed to expand the market, represents a return to a use of softer outdoor “lifestyle” imagery not unlike that used in the earlier years of the 16-year-old, all-industry campaign.
“I think it went very well,” reports Coalition Co-Chairman Tom Stinnett, president of Tom Stinnett Derby City RV, Clarksville, Ind., and a partner in Clarksville-based Equine Motorcoach. “I think that the results speak for themselves. There’s positive increases in almost everything we’re doing. There’s very interesting digital marketing improvements and a lot more feedback from our customers in that area where we’re currently expanding. I think, overall, it was a very good meeting.”
“The headline I’d put on it is: ‘How Does Go RVing Continue to Do It?’” remarked the other co-chairman, Bob Olson, the recently retired chairman of Iowa-based Winnebago Industries Inc. “I think it was a very positive meeting. You look at the strategy change that we did last year, and getting more in to the social media part of advertising platform, I think, is going to pay dividends beyond any of our wildest dreams.
“And I think that what really encouraged me most was the fact that we’re already talking about things that we’re going to move into next year and the year after that, which gives me confidence that the people that we’ve got in place right now on the RVIA side and the consulting group that we’re utilizing really know their stuff when it comes to the best way to get to that consumer.”
Among the high points in Monday’s presentations by RVIA staff, which administers the national campaign, and The Richards Group, the Dallas agency with whom the coalition has worked for several years:
• Visits to GoRVing.com have grown 16% versus 2011.
• Unique views are up 14%, page views by 34%.
• Of the visitors to GoRVing.com, more than 115,000 arrived via a mobile device, and of those, roughly 10% came via the QR code in Go RVing’s print ads.
• Total leads are up 79%.
• The Great American Country and Outdoor Channel partnerships generated more than 811,000 entries as part of the coalition’s sweepstakes. These entries also yielded more than 46,000 new leads from entrants who opted in to receive additional information from GoRVing dealers, manufacturers and campgrounds.
• The coalition is seeing a 53% increase in consumers arriving at the GoRVing.com website via digital routes.
Go RVing, meanwhile, expects 2.9 billion media impressions in 2012 from its overall advertising campaign – print, digital and otherwise, according to James Ashurst, vice president of public relations and advertising for RVIA.
“I think the new creative was the stimulus for a lot of the positive numbers that we’re seeing, along with a lot of the other interactive efforts that we’re pursuing,” observed Stinnett.
“The coverage that we’re getting across the board, whether it’s ‘Fox and Friends’ or Major League Baseball is behind the good report,” added Olson. “I think it speaks volumes for the acceptance of the RV lifestyle. And, you know, as long as we’ve got that, I think we’re going to continue to grow as an industry.”
Go RVing’s new “AWAY” campaign is off to a strong start with leads up 70% over last year, and the effort’s new mobile site is proving to be an effective tool in providing interested consumers with RVing information from their mobile device.
According to a press release, the mobile site launched earlier this year with the introduction of the redesigned GoRVing.com. More than 93,000 web visitors have come through the mobile site and nearly another 10,000 have used their smartphones to scan the QR codes in the “AWAY” print ads to reach the mobile site.
“Having an attractive, appealing mobile site is crucial for success in the digital marketplace,” said RVIA Vice President of Public Relations and Advertising James Ashurst. “Research shows there are more than 107 million smartphone users in the U.S. today and an anticipated 50% of all web searches will be done on a mobile device by 2014.”
Go RVing is also introducing a new promotion to capitalize on the other big draw of smartphones – game playing. Digital games continue to increase in popularity and with 39% of mothers admitting they hand over their smartphones to their children for entertainment while on car trips, Go RVing teamed with the Game Show Network’s GSN.com to produce digital versions of some favorite road trip games, including “United States of Bingo,” “Funny Fill-Ins,” Destination Alphabet,” and “Drive and Spy.” The new GetAWAY Games are available as Android and IPhone apps or can be played along with other custom-created games on the branded Go RVing game hub on GSN.com.
The Go RVing and MLB Network’s “Home and Away Tour” Jayco Seneca Class C motorhome stopped by Jayco Inc.’s headquarters in Middlebury, Ind., Wednesday (May 30) on its way from a St. Louis Cardinals’ game to the Tigers’ stadium in Detroit.
Wilbur Bontrager, CEO of Jayco Inc., and Derald Bontrager, president of Jayco, were there to greet James Ashurst, vice president of public relations and advertising for the Recreation Vehicle Industry Association (RVIA), and Stephen Connors, director of Midwest Advertising Sales for the MLB, as the Seneca rolled into the parking lot.
“We’re always happy to help promote Go RVing’s message and this opportunity was a fun way for us to participate.” said Derald Bontrager. “It was a win for Go RVing, the industry and Jayco.”
Since April 12, the Jayco Seneca 37RB Class C motorhome has been visiting the nation’s ballparks as a touring studio broadcasting features during the MLB Network’s Game of the Week. The Jayco Seneca was used inside and outside for on-air reports and interviews with players during the On Deck Circle, the network’s signature show featuring major league baseball highlights and analysis.
There were also teasers and promotional mentions of Go RVing and the “Home and Away Tour” on The Run Down and the MLB Network Game of the Week. This special promotion was inserted as a value-added element to Go RVing’s 2012 agreement with the MLB Network.
The Jayco Seneca, wrapped with visuals from the new Go RVing “Away” national advertising campaign as well as logos for GoRVing.com, MLB Network and Jayco, will end its tour at the Detroit Tigers’ game this Friday against the Yankees.
Go RVing’s first-ever national RV giveaways, conducted in partnership with Great American Country Network (GAC) and Outdoor Channel this spring, generated significant consumer interest while also providing impressive results for the national advertising campaign.
According to a press release, the two sweepstakes combined to draw more than 811,000 entries and yielded 46,329 leads for the Go RVing effort from entrants who opted into receiving information from participating Go RVing dealers, manufacturers and campgrounds.
“The Ultimate Country Music RV Giveaway” sweepstakes with GAC offered entrants the chance to win a 2012 Lance Camper Ultralight 1685 travel trailer as the grand prize along with two VIP tickets and backstage access to the CMA Festival in Nashville in June. Running from March 1-April 16, it drew 646,714 entrants, of which 122,376 were unique entries, and generated 23,156 opt-in leads. According to GAC, these results represent “a huge success for a custom sweepstakes.”
As part of the GAC partnership, two 60-second vignettes featuring country music artist Chuck Wicks enjoying RV getaways in the prize model Lance travel trailer aired on GAC. Go RVing also has a branded “On-The-Road-Guide to Summer Hot Spots” special section in the June People Country magazine (available on newsstand now). Featuring a country-music theme, the six-page custom section promoted the sweepstakes and RV travel. Details about the sweepstakes, Go RVing interactive banner ads, information on RVing, and the Chuck Wicks vignettes were featured on GACTV.com.
Go RVing’s “Spring Fever” sweepstakes with the Outdoor Channel attracted 165,000 total entrants, of which 31,217 were unique entries, and accounted for 23,173 opt-in leads. This contest ran through April and featured a Columbia Northwest 2012 Somerset OR12SD off-road folding camping trailer as the grand prize.
The promotion included four custom RVing vignettes featuring Outdoor Channel talent Pat Reeve and Nicole Jones, host of the hunting show Driven, and Mark Zona, host of Zona’s Awesome Fishing Show. Outdoor Channel also promoted the sweepstakes and the benefits of RV travel to audiences through outdoorchannel.com, their social media outlets, and targeted emails.
“We were very pleased with the success of our first national RV giveaway sweepstakes,” said RVIA Vice President of Public Relations and Advertising James Ashurst. “These two promotions were popular with the public and helped spread our key messages about RVing with receptive audiences. The amount of leads created by the sweepstakes was particularly encouraging.”
Lance Camper Manufacturing Corp. and Columbia Northwest Inc./Aliner were selected to provide the grand prize RVs through a lottery in January of RVIA members who offered a unit for the two sweepstakes.
The Go RVing and MLB Network “Home and Away Tour” is on the road with a specially-wrapped Jayco Inc. motorhome serving as a touring studio broadcasting features during the MLB Network Game of the Week from ballparks across the nation, according to a press release.
Through this special promotion, negotiated as a value-added element to Go RVing’s 2012 media buy with MLB Network, there will be on-air reports and interviews with players conducted both inside and outside the motorhome over the next two months on the popular On Deck Circle, the networks signature show featuring major league baseball highlights and analysis.
There will also be teasers and promotional mentions of Go RVing and the “Home and Away Tour” on The Run Down and the MLB Network Game of the Week. Video highlights showing the exposure being generated by the promotion can be seen by clicking here.
The “Home and Away Tour” motorhome is a Jayco Seneca 37RB Class C motorhome, which the company provided in response to an RVIA-member lottery invitation. It is wrapped with visuals from the new Go RVing “Away” national advertising campaign as well as logos for Go RVing.com, MLB Network and Jayco. The tour kicked off earlier this month with the motorhome appearing at the Florida Marlins vs. Philadelphia Phillies on April 12 and at the Texas Rangers vs. Boston Red Sox on April 17.
Go RVing’s new “AWAY” campaign is helping generate awareness of RV travel among consumers during the busy selling and travel season as illustrated by the increased activity on GoRVing.com since the campaign’s launch in February.
According to a press release, from Jan. 1 through April 9, total web visits were up 13% from 284,292 in 2011 to 321,342 in 2012 while page views were up 24%, rising to nearly 2 million this year from 1.6 million in 2011. The number of unique visitors has also jumped from 241,761 in 2011 to 289,394 in 2012, a 20% rise.
Go RVing’s “AWAY” campaign drives consumers to the all-new GoRVing.com website, which is designed to be a comprehensive information source to guide prospective buyers through the purchase process and travel experience. The website features new interactive tools to help visitors explore RVs, choose the best type for them, compare typical family vacation costs, watch new videos featuring real RVers and sign up for more information from participating Go RVing dealers, manufacturers, show promoters and campgrounds. Consumers who opt in to be contacted are posted on the Go RVing leads database in the industry-only area of the site, ranked by likelihood to buy.
The Go RVing “AWAY” effort is the first all-new industry advertising campaign since 2005. Built upon the evocative concept of “AWAY,” the new ads return to the emotion-driven family focus of past campaigns, along with continued emphasis on the affordability and accessibility of RV ownership for multigenerational families.
Go RVing’s first-ever national RV giveaways are in full-swing with “consumer interest running high” in the two sweepstakes conducted in partnership with Great American Country Network and the Outdoor Channel.
“We were very excited to add these national sweepstakes to the Go RVing campaign this year,” said Recreation Vehicle Industry Association (RVIA) Vice President of Public Relations and Advertising James Ashurst in a press release. “They bring tremendous added value to our advertising efforts and help spread our messages with receptive audiences.”
Running through April 16, “The Ultimate Country Music RV Giveaway” sweepstakes with Great American Country (GAC) offers entrants the chance to win a 2012 Ultralight 1685 travel trailer from Lance Camper Mfg. Corp. as the grand prize along with two VIP tickets and backstage access to the CMA Festival in Nashville in June. To date, over 400,000 entries have been received.
As part of the partnership, two 60-second vignettes featuring country music artist Chuck Wicks enjoying RV getaways in the Lance travel trailer are airing on GAC. Go RVing also has a branded “On-The-Road-Guide to Summer Hot Spots” special section in the June People Country magazine (available on newsstand now). Featuring a country-music theme, the six-page custom section promotes RV travel and the sweepstakes. Visitors to GACTV.com will also see Go RVing interactive banner ads, information on RVing, the Chuck Wicks vignettes and details about the sweepstakes.
Go RVing’s “Spring Fever” sweepstakes with the Outdoor Channel features a Columbia Northwest Inc./Aliner 2012 Somerset OR12SD off-road folding camping trailer as the grand prize. In just the first week of the promotion, 13,000 entries have been received. This sweepstakes runs April 1-30.
Included in the promotion are four custom vignettes featuring Outdoor Channel talent Pat Reeve and Nicole Jones, host of the hunting show Driven, and Mark Zona, host of Zona’s Awesome Fishing Show. Outdoor Channel will also promote the sweepstakes and the benefits of RV travel to audiences through outdoorchannel.com, their social media outlets, and targeted emails.
Go RVing sweepstakes entrants are encouraged to opt-in for information from participating Go RVing dealers, manufacturers and campgrounds.
Lance Campers and Columbia Northwest were selected to provide the grand prize RVs through a lottery in January of RVIA members who offered a unit for the two sweepstakes.
In addition to all-new creative materials promoting RV ownership at the national level, Go RVing has created new resources for local RV businesses to capitalize on the “AWAY” campaign through the Go RVing Industry Tie-In Program.
According to a press release, the program offers RV dealers, show promoters, campground owners and their agenciesonline access to campaign collateral, tools and consumer leads to use in incorporating the national advertising messages into their local marketing efforts.
Key elements of the program include:
• Go RVing’s Leads-Plus Program – Leads are ranked according to the consumer’s likelihood of purchasing – highly likely, moderately, likely or interested – using a sophisticated mathematical model to analyze confidential credit bureau data.
• Go RVing Image Library – All-new high-resolution images from Go RVing photo shoots of consumers enjoying a variety of RV products are now available for download in the Industry Only section of GoRVing.com. These images are ideal for use in advertising, websites and other promotional materials.
• Go RVing B-Roll – Footage shot during the Go RVing “AWAY” television production shoots will be available in April to download from the GoRVing.com Industry Only section for use in producing local television commercials. The nine-minute video features footage of motorhomes, travel trailers, fifth-wheel travel trailers and truck campers driving along scenic roads. In addition to the new download option, high-definition HDCAM tapes and standard definition BETA tapes of the footage are also available.
• Taggable “AWAY” TV Spots – The three “AWAY” 30-second television spots will also be available to download and tag with company-specific information in the final five seconds of the commercial.
• Go RVing Posters – Participants in the Go RVing Industry Tie-In Program will receive a set of new posters featuring the “AWAY” theme. These are perfect for displaying in a dealership or at special events or shows.
RV dealers interested in learning more or registering for the Go RVing Industry Tie-In program should contact Chuck Boyd at RVDA at (703) 591-7130, ext. 113 or firstname.lastname@example.org. The program cost for dealers is $225. Campground operators should contact ARVC’s Barb Youmans at (303) 681-0401 or email@example.com for registration and pricing information for the program. Other industry members can contact RVIA’s Margie Spence at (703) 620-6003, ext. 357 or firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
During RVIA’s March 8 Annual Membership Meeting, Public Relations Committee Chairman B.J. Thompson and Vice President of Public Relations and Advertising James Ashurst provided attendees with an update on the industry’s public relations and marketing activities.
According to a press release, the presentation kicked off with the new “AWAY” campaign creative showcasing the industry’s return to the emotion-driven focus on family fun, affordability and flexibility of RV travel.
Ashurst offered an overview of the 2012 strategic media plan, detailing how the $10.3 million advertising spend for 2012 features a strong mix of proven media and several expanded and new media partnerships.
“The advertising market is changing, and so are the days of the traditional ad buy,” he said. “Our strategic focus for 2012 is to identify advertising partnerships that allow for greater brand extensions than we’ve done in the past – opportunities that will stretch our ad dollars, add value and encourage additional partnerships in the future with like-minded brands.”
Thompson led the public relations discussion by updating attendees on RVIA’s move to bring more of the PR function in-house by using consultants that have been contracted to supplement internal efforts. He touched on several recent successes, including more than 100 newspapers picking up an Associated Press story on the state of the industry, as well as dozens of local print stories touting the early RV consumer show season.
“RVs continued to receive positive media coverage during the winter months, and our work with earned media throughout the year will continue to deliver the message that RVs provide consumers with the opportunity to pursue their passions, build connections through shared adventures, and that there is an RV that fits their needs and budget,” Thompson said.
Thompson showcased several videos highlighting recent consumer media features including national broadcast coverage on Fox&Friends and Rachael Ray, as well as footage from HGTV’s RV 2012, and HGTV’s most popular series House Hunters – a segment featuring a couple looking to settle down in an RV. RVIA worked closely with producers on each of these segments, and have laid the groundwork for additional coverage moving forward.
Thompson concluded, “PR continues to be a driving force behind our ongoing promotional efforts. The PR team and our media consultants are working on numerous projects, and we are extremely confident that despite the ever-present uncertainty in the economy, 2012 will be a banner year in terms of positive media coverage for RVs.”
On the “AWAY” campaign front, Ashurst shared videos from Go RVing’s first-ever national RV giveaways with the Great American Country (GAC) and Outdoor Channel cable networks. The GAC partnership is a multi-platform execution that features multiple vignettes starring country music artist Chuck Wicks, a six-page special section in People Country magazine, and culminates with the grand prize of a 2012 Lance Ultralight travel trailer. The Outdoor Channel, which will air four Go RVing vignettes featuring the network’s popular hunting and fishing hosts, is offering a 2012 Somerset off-road folding camping trailer from Columbia Northwest as the grand prize in the network’s “Spring Fever” promotion.
Ashurst touched on several other promotions with top media brands including National Geographic Channel and an expanded partnership with Speed Channel that features popular host Rutledge Wood and his family traveling in a type A motorhome provided by Monaco in a custom on-air segment
Additionally, Ashurst highlighted how Go RVing is staying aggressive in the sports category, with a more robust execution with MLB Network. The 2012 partnership, dubbed the “Home and Away Tour”, includes an eight-market stadium tour featuring a custom-wrapped motorhome from Jayco that allows for mobile studio interviews with players and managers in and around the RV. An exciting new partnership has been forged with NFL Network, providing Go RVing a highly visible presence during the network’s popular Game Day Morning. The collaboration will feature editorial and advertising extensions in the league’s new monthly, NFL Magazine.
Additionally, Go RVing has struck a deal with CBS Sports Network that will include RV-specific content as part of packages celebrating unique college football tailgating traditions.
The first of Go RVing’s two national RV sweepstakes kicked off Thursday (March 1) when the Great American Country Network (GAC) launches “The Ultimate Country Music RV Giveaway.”
The sweepstakes runs through April 16 with the grand prize winner being awarded a 2012 Lance ultra-light 1685 travel trailer along with two VIP tickets and backstage access to the Country Music Association (CMA) Festival in Nashville this June. Lance Camper was selected in a lottery of RVIA members to provide the vehicle as the sweepstakes prize.
GACTV.com is promoting the sweepstakes as well as featuring Go RVing interactive banner ads and information about RVing, including favorite Roadworthy Recipes. GACTV will be tweeting about the sweepstakes and running live feeds of the Go RVing Twitter posts on GACTV.com.
“The Ultimate Country Music RV Giveaway” is a key element of Go RVing’s integrated media buy on GAC. In addition to Go RVing commercials now airing on GAC music and lifestyle programming, GAC and Go RVing teamed to produce two 60-second RV travel vignettes featuring country recording artist Chuck Wicks using a Lance travel trailer. In one, Wicks enjoys a weekend getaway with friends while he takes a hunting trip with his father in the other. The vignettes will begin airing March 19 on GAC.
Go RVing will also have a branded On-The-Road-Guide to Summer Hot Spots special section in the June People Country magazine, available on newsstands nationwide. With a country music theme, the six-page custom section will promote RV travel.