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MC Fireside Chats: Exploring the Future of the RV Industry with RV Trader and Barefoot Caravans

Join us for the next episode of MC Fireside Chats on February 28th, 2024 at 2 pm EST. Explore the latest trends and insights on RV and Outdoor Recreation alongside our distinguished panel of guests.

Our host, Brian Searl, will engage with returning guests: Phil Ingrassia, President of the National RV Dealers Association (RVDA); Eleanore Hamm, President of the RVDA of Canada; Shane Devenish, Executive Director of the Canadian Recreational Vehicle Association; and Susan Carpenter, President of the RV Women’s Alliance.

We are also thrilled to introduce Erin Ruane from RV Trader and Cathy Chamberlain from Barefoot Caravans to our panel. Erin will share her insights on the current state of the RV industry, while Cathy will offer a fresh perspective on the RV market in the UK.

This episode is proudly sponsored by AccessParks, the premier broadband service provider serving numerous guests in RV parks, lodges, and national parks nationwide.

February 21st Episode Recap

In the latest episode of MC Fireside Chats, hosted by Brian Searl, the conversation delved into the evolving dynamics of the outdoor hospitality industry, featuring insights from a panel of seasoned experts. The episode brought together Candice McNamara from Staylist, Whitney Scott from Kampgrounds of America (KOA), Joe Duemig from App My Community, and Troy Haney, who shared the poignant story behind Kacie’s Campground. Each guest brought a unique perspective to the table, discussing the integration of technology in campgrounds, the importance of adapting to seasonal changes, and the personal motivations behind campground operations.

Brian Searl, the founder and CEO of Insider Perks, facilitated the discussion, focusing on how campgrounds can succeed by embracing innovation and understanding the needs of their guests. The episode highlighted the significance of campground owners focusing on creating memorable experiences for their guests, leveraging technology to enhance operational efficiency, and the growing trend of winter camping.

Whitney Scott shared her insights on the increasing interest in winter camping and how campgrounds can market their availability during the colder months. She emphasized the need for campgrounds to adapt their amenities for winter campers and discussed the trend of campers booking their spots earlier to secure their preferred camping holidays. Whitney also touched upon the importance of understanding consumer behavior and adapting marketing strategies to meet the evolving demands of campers.

Candice McNamara spoke about the generational handoff of campground properties to millennials and the adoption of new technologies in campground management. She highlighted the use of intuitive software for operations and reservations, pointing out the trend towards creating memorable experiences for campers. Candice also discussed the importance of campgrounds adapting to new technologies and big conversations around marketing and automation.

Joe Duemig discussed the role of mobile apps in enhancing guest engagement and communication within campgrounds. He highlighted the shift towards automation and the desire for a seamless camping experience, emphasizing the importance of technology in meeting the expectations of modern campers.

Troy Haney shared a personal and touching story behind the creation of Kacie’s Campground, emphasizing the importance of creating a space that honors memories while providing a unique camping experience. He discussed the challenges and rewards of developing a campground from a previously industrial site, highlighting the transformation process and the vision behind Kacie’s Campground.

The panel also explored the concept of resort-like campgrounds, discussing how technology, such as RFID bands and online ordering systems, can elevate the camping experience to resemble that of a resort. The conversation underscored the importance of setting and exceeding guest expectations to achieve high satisfaction ratings.

The discussion touched upon the impact of weather on booking trends, the importance of flexible cancellation policies, and the potential for campgrounds to offer storage options during the off-season to generate additional revenue. The experts agreed on the need for campgrounds to continuously innovate and adapt to changing consumer expectations.

Brian and the guests also delved into the significance of leveraging data and insights to make informed decisions about campground operations and marketing strategies. They discussed the balance between attracting new guests and retaining loyal customers, emphasizing the importance of understanding and catering to the diverse needs of campers.

The conversation highlighted the collaborative nature of the outdoor hospitality industry, with each expert sharing their experiences and lessons learned. The panelists underscored the value of sharing knowledge and best practices to drive the industry forward.

The episode of MC Fireside Chats offered a comprehensive overview of the challenges and opportunities facing the outdoor hospitality industry. Through the insights of Candice McNamara, Whitney Scott, Joe Duemig, and Troy Haney, listeners gained a deeper understanding of the importance of innovation, guest experience, and the personal stories that shape the world of camping and outdoor hospitality.

About MC Fireside Chats

MC Fireside Chats is a weekly show devoted to the outdoor hospitality industry. The show is hosted by Brian Searl, the founder and CEO of Insider Perks and Modern Campground. 

Airing live every Wednesday at 2 p.m. (ET), MC Fireside Chats features guests from the camping and RV industry who share their take on the current state of the camping, glamping, and RVing sectors as well as upcoming innovations in RV parks, campgrounds, outdoor resorts, glamping, and the RV industry.

To listen to previous episodes of MC Fireside Chats, visit moderncampground.com/mc-fireside-chats/.

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Leo Starlight
Leo Starlight
February 23, 2024 1:24 pm

Was captivated by the discussions on integrating technology and sustainability in campgrounds. What do you think about virtual reality camping experiences?

February 23, 2024 5:36 pm
Reply to  Leo Starlight

I was captivated by the discussions about integrating technology and sustainability in campgrounds. Virtual reality camping experiences are an amazing concept. They offer a taste of the outdoors to those who may not have the opportunity to go camping in real life. Plus, it’s an exciting way to explore different camping destinations without leaving the comfort of your home.

February 23, 2024 4:08 pm

The recent fireside chat offered motivating insights into sustainable camping practices and community partnerships, reflecting a growing trend towards eco-friendly and enriching experiences. It’s uplifting to see the industry evolve in such optimistic ways.


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Hi, you might find this article from Modern Campground interesting: MC Fireside Chats: Exploring the Future of the RV Industry with RV Trader and Barefoot Caravans! This is the link: https://moderncampground.com/usa/mc-fireside-chats-exploring-the-future-of-the-rv-industry-with-rv-trader-and-barefoot-caravans/