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Evanne Schmarder talks digital marketing on Podcast 47

Evanne Schmarder talks digital marketing on Podcast 47 (March 19, 2015) -- The host of the online RV Cooking Show and of RV Life, produced for Rollin' On TV, Schmarder's involvement in the RV industry is vast and varied. She is the author of Unconventional Wisdom Works, and directed the outdoor hospitality industry's first benchmark study to gauge the way campgrounds and RV parks are marketing their firms online. Schmarder is the owner of Roadabode Productions and serves as a consultant to business owners to help them maximize their digital marketing efforts. Read More »

Chuck Woodbury is guest on podcast episode 46

Chuck Woodbury is guest on podcast episode 46 (March 13, 2015) -- Woodbury is the 2014 RV Industry Association Journalist of the Year. His career spans several decades and includes work as a magazine publisher, blogger, and videographer. Until recently, he owned RVbookstore.com, which served thousands of customers as the industry's first online resource for books and DVDs. The manager of nearly a dozen different RV-related websites, he has been at the forefront of every communications change impacting the RV industry, and he offers some great insight into how digital media will change the way RV businesses and campgrounds reach and serve customers. Read More »

RV Insurance Solutions is subject of Podcast 45

RV Insurance Solutions is subject of Podcast 45 (March 5, 2015) -- RV Insurance Solutions is celebrating its 10th anniversary and both men describe how the company came about how it has grown over the years. Although relatively small in size, the firm has a growing footprint and is looking to expand into other areas. Watters and Ballard also discuss the various types of insurance products dealers should be offering to specific customers. Plus, they explain why RV owners should purchase certain types of insurance protection just for their RVs rather than relying upon other types of insurance, like auto or homeowners policies. Read More »

Lazyday’s Tim Sheehan and videographer John Holod on podcast 44

Lazyday’s Tim Sheehan and videographer John Holod on podcast 44 (Feb. 12, 2015) -- The first guest is Tim Sheehan, the CEO of Lazydays RV. He talks about what is happening at one of the largest RV dealerships in the world and describes how the market in Tampa has changed in recent years, and what's behind the phenomenal growth in RV sales in that part of Florida. He also touches on the opening of the new Airstream Store at the Lazydays Tucson location, and how dealer-manufacturer partnerships like that can be game changers for consumers. The second guest is John Holod, owner of RV Adventure Videos, who has traveled throughout North America chronicling popular RV tours to places like Florida, Alaska, the Rocky Mountains, Route 66 and the New England Coast. Holod is available to help RV show promoters sell the sizzle and fun of the RV lifestyle by hosting a series of fun, informative presentations. Magicians, musicians and water-skiing squirrels aren't going to convince people to buy and use an RV, but learning about RV adventures will keep people talking for days and weeks after the show, he explained. Read More »

JG Lubricant Services featured on podcast episode 43

JG Lubricant Services featured on podcast episode 43 (Feb. 5, 2015) -- This week's guests are Tom Johnson, the president and CEO of JG Lubricant Services and Barney Gerdts, the director of sales. They describe a new service being offered to RV dealers and RV inspectors that allows fluid samples from RVs to be submitted for analysis, much like blood work for people. The analysis gives an accurate report on the condition of those components. It will allow RV buyers to better determine the value of a motorhome they are contemplating buying, plus it offers RV dealers a third-party review of an RV to create more accurate trade-in offers. Read More »

Roadtreker Mike Wendland and CampgroundViews on Podcast 42

Roadtreker Mike Wendland and CampgroundViews on Podcast 42 (Jan. 29, 2015) -- Wendland, who blogs about his experience at Roadtreking.com, offers dealers insight into the Class B market and to the types of people who appreciate traveling in smaller motorhomes. He describes the convenience of using his Roadtrek Class B and overcomes some of the popular myths that the units are too small for full-time living. Mark Koep, with CampgroundViews.com. and his family are traveling the nation creating short introductory videos for campgrounds and RV parks so that potential guests can see what the campground looks like before they make reservations. Koep explains why traffic to his website has increased considerably since the site was launched. Read More »

Chris Baum, Little Guy Worldwide, on Podcast 41

Chris Baum, Little Guy Worldwide, on Podcast 41 (Jan. 23, 2015) -- This week's guest is Chris Baum, CEO of Little Guy Worldwide, a manufacturer of tiny trailers and teardrop trailers. He describes the market for smaller towables and talks about why teardrops seem to have such a cult following among some consumers. He also offers ideas on ways RV dealers can tap into the growing consumer base of people looking for an inexpensive way to move from tent camping and sleeping on the ground into the RV lifestyle via these entry-level products. Read More »

Tampa RV Supershow, EasyCare topics for Podcast 40

Tampa RV Supershow, EasyCare topics for Podcast 40 (Jan. 15, 2015) -- Lance Wilson, executive director of the Florida RV Trade Association, which sponsors the show, is the first guest. He talks about the record-setting opening day and why he thinks the show is so popular. He also talks about the association's training effort and how dealers all over North America can tap into the program. The second guest is Walt Burns, from EasyCare. The company offers extended warranties and other F&I products to RV dealers, and he describes those in detail. But, he also talks about a new video messaging service that EasyCare offers to dealers that let them e-mail video messages to customers. This is a popular communications technique for sales and service applications. Read More »

RV bloggers John and Kathy Huggins on episode 039

RV bloggers John and Kathy Huggins on episode 039 (Jan. 8, 2015) -- The first podcast of 2015 features an interview with John and Kathy Huggins, the founders of Living the RV Dream. The couple have been full-time RVing since 2005, and have developed quite an audience among RV owners and people thinking about getting into the RV lifestyle. The Huggins talk about their own experience on the road, as well as some important industry issues from an RV owner's perspective -- and it goes beyond product quality. Read More »

Velvac’s Jeff Porter and Blue Ox’ Ryan Thomas on podcast 38

Velvac’s Jeff Porter and Blue Ox’ Ryan Thomas on podcast 38 (Dec. 18, 2014) -- The final podcast of 2014, episode 38, features two interviews from the National RV Trade Show in Louisville, Ky. First up is Jeff Porter, the CEO of Velvac Corporation. The New Berlin, Wis., company is celebrating its 80th anniversary in 2014, and is really making a push into the RV aftermarket to increase awareness among RV dealers about the firm's driver safety products. Next up is Ryan Thomas, a salesperson for Blue Ox. The Pender, Neb., company hasn't slowed down since the death of its founder, Jay Hesse, earlier this year. Ryan talks about the new Avail towbar and the company's chassis performance package, which gives dealers a great product to sell to help RV owners better enjoy their driving and towing experiences. Read More »

Truma Corp. execs are guests on Podcast 37

Truma Corp. execs are guests on Podcast 37 (Dec. 17, 2014) -- Guests on the show include Gerhard Hundsberger, president and CEO; Eldon Wood, vice president of sales and marketing; and Jutta Bringazi, public relations director. The trio discuss the company's history, its plans for serving the American RV industry and the products being introduced at the National RV Trade Show. Read More »

Dicor’s Gregg Fore and ARC’s Raymond Padgett on Podcast 36

Dicor’s Gregg Fore and ARC’s Raymond Padgett on Podcast 36 (Dec. 11, 2014) -- Gregg Fore, president of Dicor Products, kicks off the show by describing some of the more innovative products his company introduced at the show. Fore also talks about the Louisville show in general and its role in the industry. He's got some frank advice for exhibitors who complain that nobody shows up at their booths. He applauds RVIA for introducing technician training to the show. Next up, Raymond Padgett, the principle at ARC Representation, explains how he came up with the idea to start the company and how he feels it will fill a unique niche in the aftermarket. His company will put boots on the ground at RV dealerships to teach dealers about specific products and help them market those products. Read More »

Online sales experts from RVT are guests on Episode 35

Online sales experts from RVT are guests on Episode 35 (Dec. 9, 2014) -- Episode 35 features one interview with two online RV sales experts. Chris Mapson, the RV sales maximization specialist for RVT, and his colleague, data analyst Drew Clifton, talk about the company's just released RV Market Report. The report looks at the online behavior of RV consumers, for which mobile device use has exploded with 32 percent of shoppers now using tablets and smartphones to access information about units available for sale. The most stunning disclosure, from an industry perspective, is that four out of 10 consumers report dealers don't follow up on inquiries within 48 hours. Read More »

KOA’s Toby Hedges and Tents for Troops’ Charlie Curry on Episode 034

KOA’s Toby Hedges and Tents for Troops’ Charlie Curry on Episode 034 (Dec. 1, 2014) -- One of the outdoor industry's best marketing minds, Hedges talks about the explosion of interest in deluxe cabins as well as several new branding initiatives for KOA that include partnerships with RV industry groups, like Route 66 and Dometic. Curry, the founder of Tents for Troops, talks about an expansion plan he has launched to allow active duty military members free use recreation vehicles permanently parked at campgrounds. Read More »

Ben Hirsch plus Ed Thor on Podcast 33

Ben Hirsch plus Ed Thor on Podcast 33 (Nov. 26, 2014) -- Ben Hirsch, who oversees the day-to-day operations of nine dealerships between Florida and New Hampshire, has been active in developing fast-track training opportunities to help develop younger leaders into well-rounded dealership managers. He talks about how the RVDA's Young Executives Program was formed and how it is being received by the participants. Next up, Ed Thor, manager of RV services, and John Annichiarico, vice president of national sales for Vehicle Administrative Services (VAS) talk about their branded emergency roadside assistance programs being offered to dealers, manufacturers and associations. Read More »