Tue Nov 8, 2016
Members of the RV industry are optimistic about the future. Speaking from the on-going RV Dealers Association Convention in Las Vegas, they share their thoughts about what is needed to keep the industry strong with RVDA’s RV Executive Today.
Tom Stinnett, Tom Stinnett Derby City RV, Clarksville, Ind.:
"We need to make improvements to and increased investments in education and the service portion of our business. We need to invite more people into the industry and train them in service, because providing a quality service experience is key to our longevity. We have wonderful products and a customer base that will be there for some time—we need to make it a happy experience for customers."
Melissa and Adam Dalton, Outside Rentals, South Jordan, Utah:
"We're a rental operation, and we need more lightweight trailers. We need as wide a variety of lightweights as possible because it seems that today's trucks have more limited towing capacity. Even a Tahoe can only tow 6,000 pounds, and by the time you load up, you're pushing the safety limit. I have to turn down a lot of business because we don't have enough lightweight units. And we need those units to have more beds so they can fit a family. Class A motorhomes are more geared toward older couples, not families. You can sleep more people in a towable than in a motorhome."
NeVelle Skaggs, Skaggs RV Country, Elizabethtown, Ky.:
"We have a hard time getting warranties approved. We don't get paid for about 20 percent of every claim. We don't mind doing warranty work, but we want to get paid for it. If we're going to sell more product, we need to keep customers happy by getting their warranties filled. People driving BMWs and Cadillacs get the red carpet treatment when they take them to the dealership for service, and then when they take their RVs for service, they get treated badly."
Ted Evans, Mid America RV Inc., Carthage, Mo.:
"Marketing is very important, because there's a generational gap—a lot of people aren't familiar with RVing, so it's important to get the message out. Go RVing does an important job in that regard. "At my dealership, we're selling RVs to people younger than I ever imagined, and low interest rates have helped. Once you've been RVing, it's in your blood and you want to pass the experience down to your kids. Also, the manufacturers need to stay on top of product quality. The last thing we need is to get a reputation for poor quality."