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Go RVing and RVIA Public Relations Work Together to Preserve Image of RVing and Position Industry for Recovery

Category: RV Publicity
Source: RVIA
Publish Date: Wednesday, June 9, 2010
Summary: The image of RVing has remained strong, and media has widely reported core RVIA messages

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CONTACT: Kevin Broom
Director of Media Relations
703-620-6003, ext. 304
Christine Morrison
Sr. Director of Marketing Communications
703-620-6003, ext. 344

South Bend, Ind., June 9, 2010 - The leaders of the RV industry's marketing communications program reported how Go RVing advertising and RVIA public relations are working hand-in-hand to protect the image of RVing and build RV demand at the association's Annual Membership Meeting in South Bend, Ind.

In a presentation titled "Go RVing: We're Back in the Saddle Again," Go RVing Co-Chairman and CEO of Winnebago Bob Olson, and RVIA Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer Gary LaBella told RVIA members that investing in Go RVing's new "Ambassadors of Affordability" ads was a wise decision during the recession.

"We were under severe economic constraints last year," said Olson. "Continuing to advertise and deciding to develop new creative in such a year were bold moves to keep our industry on the offensive."

The new ads emphasize savings, which research shows is a smart move given how the economy has affected consumer thinking.

"We've always promoted value and affordability as big advantages of RV ownership," said LaBella. "But dramatic changes in consumer behavior due to the recession have now made value and affordability even more important to purchase decisions."

In the new ads, the "Ambassadors" - the charming critters already familiar to consumers from several years of national print exposure - were given new personalities and starring roles in four new TV commercials to air throughout 2010 and 2011. The Ambassadors will also appear on new web banners for Internet advertising, and are hosts of a new, more interactive experience at GoRVing.com. Web visits and leads have already surged as a result of the new ads and increased media exposure this year.

Following the "Back in the Saddle Again" report, LaBella was joined by Thompson to present "The New Consumer and the Road Ahead," a look at RVIA public relations activities, as well as an overview of findings from a new communications planning survey conducted by Harris Interactive.

LaBella and Thompson reported that the image of RVing has remained strong, and that media has widely reported core RVIA messages.

"The key to our successful outreach is the industry's continued investment in PR," said Thompson. "An investment that has protected our image and deftly positioned in the industry to capitalize on our nation's growing economic recovery."

After showing an 11-minute video of news and entertainment programs featuring RVs, the duo provided analysis of the new Harris Interactive research.

"Among the findings, the survey showed that statements focused on family togetherness and cost savings rate equally with RV owners and non-RV owners alike," said LaBella. "Messages that mention families saving money while enjoying a great outdoor experience will appeal to a wide cross-section of consumers."

The PR presentation closed with an entertaining video titled "A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to Our Centennial," which showed RV news and entertainment highlights from the past several decades.

RVIA is the national association representing approximately 400 manufacturers and component suppliers producing 98 percent of all RVs made in the United States.

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