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Retail sales at RV shows around the country this winter have been strong, according to the Recreation Vehicle Industry Association (RVIA).
“We had more young families attend than ever before and they came ready to buy,” Steve Cody of Delcreek Promotions said about his company’s show in Spokane, Wash. “Sales were up 20% over last year’s.”
Sales “were just phenomenal” at Mac Events show in New Jersey, according to Jim McLaughlin.
“Everything was selling, from entry-level units to high-end models,” McLaughlin said. “One dealer told me he hasn’t had as good of a show since the 1970s.”
According to a survey of New Jersey show attendees, 62% planned to buy an RV and 36% of those had never owned one.
Retail shows play a crucial role in the RV purchases, according to a study done by survey research firm Harris Interactive for the Go RVing Coalition, the ad hoc group comprising representatives of the manufacturer, supplier, retail dealer, distributor and campground operator sectors.
The coalition is responsible for the industry-financed Go RVing national advertising campaign to expand consumer awareness of the RV lifestyle.
“Retail shows can save on production costs by signing up for the Go RVing tie-in program and by purchasing the Go RVing B-roll,” said Gary LaBella, vice president of public relations and advertising for the Reston, Va.-based RVIA. “By signing up for the tie-in program, local shows can use the Go RVing image library when developing print ads, programs, posters and other display materials. For TV commercials, promoters often use the professionally produced Go RVing B-roll of families enjoying all types of RVs.”
RV shows in Alabama, Georgia and Ohio played Go RVing TV and radio ads continuously in the exhibitor halls this show season, LaBella added.