July '18

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146 • RV PRO • July 2018 rv-pro.com B U S I N E S S the way that they tell it and we know there's not anything controversial, then we approach them," she says. Redfern emphasizes that authen- ticity is key when incorporating these stories into Go RVing's marketing and advertising initiatives. For example, Go RVing used to be brand-agnostic, she notes. So, when RVs appeared in TV and print ads, they were logo-free. Now, though, logo-emblazoned RVs regularly pop up in Go RVing's marketing and advertising. Go RVing seeks to ensure that one RV brand or style isn't featured more than others, however. Redfern says this approach aligns with Go RVing's "extremely organic" following on Facebook and Instagram. Go RVing's Facebook page had more than 735,000 followers as of April, while the Instagram account had more than 62,300 followers. Those followers cover the gamut, from "armchair dreamers" to veteran RVers, according to Redfern. "We've learned that we've got a brand that's very organic to consumers. So, that's the main reason why we've moved toward this model of authenticity. People can tell when they're being sold to versus when people are sharing with them," she says. "We're lucky enough to have some- thing that's appealing as a product and a lifestyle that's easily shareable without sounding like we are marketing and sales- pitching to consumers." A United Coalition Members of the 24-year-old Go RVing Coalition – manufacturers, dealers, component suppliers, state associations and campgrounds – have embraced that low-key attitude toward marketing, according to Redfern. Founders of the coalition are the RV Industry Association, RV Dealers Asso- ciation, National Association of RV Parks and Campgrounds (ARVC), and state RV and campground associations. RVDA President Phil Ingrassia praises dealers, manufacturers and others for being fully onboard with Go RVing. For example, dealers are now eager to supply RVs for "experiential events" sponsored by Go RVing. At these events, such as state fairs and music festivals, dealers introduce potential customers to the RV lifestyle in an atmosphere that's heavy on education – including tours of RVs – but absent of hard-core sale tactics. "When we started, it was difficult, frankly, to get dealers to bring units to things like this," Ingrassia says. He also gives credit to manufacturers for making RVs that attract a variety of today's buyers – such as smaller, lighter, easy-to-tow units geared toward younger customers – and lauds dealers for stocking those units. Without that buy-in, Go RVing's promotion of the RV lifestyle would be all for naught, according to Ingrassia. The Go RVing campaign hosts all kinds of events sponsored around activities, such as racing and golfing. The event above took place at the Ladies Professional Golf Association tour in Palm Springs, Calif.

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