The Go RVing team of co-chairmans Bob Wheeler and Tom Stinnett, along with Recreation Vehicle Industry Association (RVIA) Vice President of Communications and Marketing James Ashurst told attendees at RVIA’s “Outlook 2015: Good Things Ahead” that the national advertising campaign achieved strong success in 2014 and detailed how digital media efforts are becoming an increasingly important tool in the program’s effort to reach consumer in an ever-changing media landscape.
“There is a sea change taking place in consumer behavior in terms of where and how media is being accessed and used. Digital media is a growing, transcendent power that reaches into every demographic,” said Ashurst in kicking off a presentation titled “Keep on Rolling.” “Go RVing is adapting to this new environment. In just five years, digital media jumped to 40% of our annual media buy, and in 2015 we’ll spend as much on digital as we do on our national cable television buy.”
According to a press release, Wheeler added that not only are today’s consumers going digital, they are also going mobile. That means that an increasing number of consumers are exploring GoRVing.com via mobile devices and tablets.
“In 2013, 76% of all visitors to the website arrived via traditional laptop or desktop computers. Just one year later, that number has dropped to 56% with tablets (26%) and mobile devices (18%) bringing more traffic to Go RVing.com,” said Wheeler.
To take advantage of this trend, Go RVing launched an all-new mobile and tablet optimization for the campaign’s website, and the results have been incredibly strong with user sessions up 18% over last year, page views up 20% and a 13% increase in time spent on the site.
“These are all indications of strong consumer interest and engagement,” said Wheeler. “Our message is not only moving the consumer, it also moving with the consumer.”
On the digital front, he reported that Go RVing boasts the largest and most engaged social media profile in the RV industry by using Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest and, of course, Facebook. Go RVing’s Facebook page now has more than 600,000 likes and year-to-date has enjoyed a 147% increase in Facebook community size, a 56% rise in engagement and over 40 million total social content impressions.
“Our expanded digital media efforts combined with our traditional media outreach and expanded experiential marketing efforts resulted in a record year for Go RVing,” Wheeler said. “We expect our total impressions to top 4.2 billion in 2014, which is the highest in Go RVing history.”
Stinnett added that Go RVing is also seeing encouraging result in the amount of leads being generated by the Go RVing campaign.
“Our efforts are designed to increase consumer awareness about RVing and deliver bodies to your business,” he said “Our research indicates that we are doing just that with 35% of leads identifying themselves as buyers, 41% as rental prospects, and 24% as either past or current RV owners.”
Stinnett also explained how experiential marketing events are playing an increasingly prominent role in Go RVing’s outreach. In this effort, Go RVing creates an RV experience at large consumer events, such as fairs, festivals or sporting venues, that draw large crowds of consumers.
“Two years ago, Go RVing did not have a presence at any events,” he said. “This year we partnered with our media partners to bring RV products directly to potential consumers to let them experience RVing firsthand.”
This year, Go RVing had on-site RV activations with Garden & Gun, Country Living, Outside and Sports Illustrated that introduced approximately 50,000 consumers to the RV lifestyle. Previewing 2015 plans, Ashurst said that Go RVing will spend more money on advertising and partnerships to continue driving the industry forward.
“Last year, we spent a little over $13 million dollars in this area, and I’m pleased to report that based on projections our media spend next year will top $15 million, the highest level since 2007,” he said.
Ashurst also said that Go RVing will be filming a new television commercial for 2015 that will continue to use the emotional “Find Your Away” message and will launch a new microsite that will feature enormous amounts of RV video, picture and real RVers talking about why they love the lifestyle.
“As we look ahead, Go RVing’s mission remains clear – grow and expand the RV market,” he said. “We will continue to do what works while constantly seeking out new and innovative approaches to deliver our message to consumers.”