RVIA Economic Impact Study

The Recreation Vehicle Industry Association commissioned an Economic Impact Study on the RV industry, released on June 7, 2016. The study found that the RV industry contributes about $49.7 billion in economic output or 0.28 percent of the Gross Domestic Product. Through its production and distribution linkages, the industry impacts firms in 426 of the 440 sectors of the United States economy.

Nationwide, the industry is responsible for 216,170 jobs, both directly and inderectly, creating an economic impact of $37.5 billion. The full study results, along with each individual state and congressional district's economic impact is available on the website by clicking here .

RV News Exclusive: National RV Show Focuses on Dealer Education

Tue Oct 17, 2017
Author: Scott Hansen

145072659275994.jpgAfter last year’s National RV Show in Louisville, Kentucky, the RVIA Trade Show & Events staff got to work on researching market trends, needs from RV dealers across the country and tailored this year’s show directly to those needs.

As a result, pre-registrations are up 20 percent with still more pre-registering as the show is about five weeks away.

Jeremy Greene, the director of marketing for RVIA Shows & Events, says the show has changed a lot, especially in terms of dealer education. All of the changes were as a direct result of market research and dealer feedback.

“When I came in and worked with (RVIA Director of Trade Shows & Events) Liz (Crawford), one of the first things we said was we need to be focused on attendees, understand who they are, where they’re coming from, their challenges and segment that audience and talk to them in a certain way,” Greene says. “We did a ton of research on who attends the show, why did they drop out from year to year, why do certain dealers come back year after year. We’ve focused our campaign this year to talking to them directly about what’s valuable for them at this show. That’s been the biggest difference we’ve seen so far.”

A new event added to this year’s show is a general opening session, which will take place from 3-4 p.m. on Monday, Nov. 27. This general session will feature a panel of RV dealership CEOs and presidents who will talk about the more prominent issues they face in their businesses every day.

The topics that will be touched on include how the dealerships are dealing with service and product backlogs, staffing and how they’re attracting new customers in a growing segment of younger buyers. The topics were chosen when RVIA staff set up polls and surveys with the title “What keeps you up at night?”

“This is going to resonate with dealers in attendance,” Greene says. “They can be hearing from CEOS and other dealerships around the country and how they are managing those situations.”

Education was determined to be one of the driving factors for why dealer personnel go to shows and expos. Greene says the time and cost for sending several dealership personnel to these events have to be returned with enough quality and value to make the trip worth it for the company.

“We developed a campaign that was really focused on how this show can help them sell RVs,” Greene says. “In the past, the show was focused on generic messages and didn’t get to the heart of what the attendees wanted. If they were going to commit dollars and time to an event, it needs to have a value to them.”

Much more training and education will be available at the show for dealers and other RV personnel to engage in. There will be several hour-long PowerTalks throughout the days Tuesday and Wednesday that are designed to provide information, ideas, advice and resources for the challenges and triumphs that dealers share in common.

The goal for RVIA was to have five to six PowerTalks per day for a total of 10-12 throughout the show. At the moment, RVIA has eight scheduled, so space and resources are available for other people and companies to apply for a PowerTalk position.

The PowerTalk subjects that will be covered include:

• Multicultural and Millennial Insights and understanding the new demographic of buyers.
• Where will they camp? – A talk about campgrounds from some of the campground industry leaders on what can be done to improve the campgrounds of the country and give campers a better experience.
• The Amazon Effect – the good, the bad and the in-between.
• Advocacy: How to Make an Impact on the federal, state and local level.
• How culture is the key to meaningful and memorable engagement with customers in a social media-driven world.
• And more

Finally, specific dealer sales training from Sobel University will take place from 8-10 a.m. on Wednesday Nov. 29 and Thursday, Nov. 30. This is the first year that Sobel University has been involved with the National RV Trade Show. The trainings will touch on topics such as how to help dealers form a plan to attract more customers that will come back again and again and other similar topics.

If anyone wants to discuss possible topics for PowerTalks or learn more about the opportunity or the trade show in general, contact the Trade Show and Events staff at nationalrvtradeshow@rvia.org.