Thursday, February 28, 2019

The Top Searched Makes and Classes for Q4

Now that we’ve had some time to settle into the new year - it seems like as good a time as any to take a quick look back at Q4 2018 to see what consumers were searching for on RV Trader. We’ve seen a few consistencies, as well as a few changes, we think you’ll find interesting and informative. So, the wait is officially over - your Q4 roundup is here.

Top 5 searched classes of Q4 2018:
  • Class A
  • Travel Trailer
  • Class C
  • Fifth Wheel
  • Class B
We saw a slight shake up this quarter when it came to travel trailer searches. While they took the top spot in most searched classes throughout 2018, this quarter Class A’s came out on top by just 0.1%. Travel trailers fell to second place as a result with 21% of total searches, seeing a slight decline of 1% Y.O.Y. Class C units came in third with 14% of searches (up 1% Y.O.Y.) and fifth wheels came in fourth with 12% of searches. Class B models rounded out fifth place with 10% of total searches - down 1% from last quarter, and up 2.5% Y.OY. We’re eager to see how these numbers shift as we move further into 2019 - only time will tell. Now, let’s dive into the top makes of Q4 2018.

Top 5 searched makes of Q4 2018:
  • Forest River
  • Winnebago
  • Keystone
  • Jayco
  • Airstream
Standings and percentages remain consistent Y.O.Y. when it comes to the most searched makes, but we have seen a few changes since last quarter - let’s fill you in. Forest River took the top spot yet again with 11% of searches, down 2% since last quarter. Winnebago secured second place, rising in the ranks since Q3 2018 with 7% of searches. Keystone rounded out third with 6% of total searches and Jayco took fourth with 5%. Airstream worked their way up to fifth place this quarter with 5% of total searches - this is a big win for the manufacturer considering they didn’t make the top 5 in Q3. We’re curious to see if they will remain in fifth place in Q1 2019, or if they will get pushed down by another manufacturer.

Stay tuned for our Q1 2019 report coming this April and let us know how your dealership compares with our findings in the comments below.
Trader Online Web Developer

Thursday, February 7, 2019

An Ode to Branding

Marketing teams are often viewed like the right side of this image.

Creative. Colorful. Qualitative. 

Brands that truly know who they are - and can communicate it - harness these traits to connect with their audience in an emotional way, subconsciously instilling value and trust for their products. With so many options to choose from, brands - and the experience they provide - is what drives loyalty, growth, and advocation.

Before consumers had a multitude of choices, marketers could get by with distinguishing their product using facts -- our brand has 50% less sugar, helps you sell 75% more units, makes you 100% faster. But as consumers became more savvy, they realized numbers can be manipulated and their loyalty came at a higher cost. Now - they want brands that are not only superior, but also understand their perspective.

Powerful brands - like Yeti - have done such a great job tapping into the experience of their consumer that people follow along with them solely because of the story they tell. They have a great product - but spend more time focusing on lifestyle and emotion-invoking imagery than they do truly pushing their product. And even if the majority of their 1 million+ Instagram followers haven’t purchased a cooler - they might - and either way, they provide invaluable organic marketing and brand awareness for Yeti.

So how do you get some of that for your dealership?

Thankfully, RVing is a passion-based industries. You don’t have to convince your followers - like toilet paper or detergent brands - to be excited about what you have to offer. They’re going to be passionate whether you’re involved or not. So their loyalty is yours for the taking.

The more you get to know your consumers - the more likely you are to develop campaigns that resonate long beyond buying and selling - keeping them coming back to you no matter where they are in the lifecycle or what their needs are.

Branding is certainly not only for big, national brands. Some of the most successful brands are small, local organizations that are rallying a geo-targeted audience for support. So all the same things you see these brands trying - you should consider too.

Remember - buyers are looking for something to follow along with, so push yourself to use imagery beyond the literal - showing your buyers more than just what’s for sale. Include images of units being used, pictures without units at all - focusing more on the lifecycle - or giving consumers an inside peek at your dealership and all the goofiness and work that happens there. Give them something to connect with. Something that resonates with them and makes them want to follow along. Mimicry is the sincerest form of flattery - so encourage check out other companies - in your area and nationwide, in your industry and outside - to see what’s working for other businesses and then adapt that strategy for yourself.

Brands have staying power. It’s why they are so important. There will always be someone else who comes along that can do what you do - but it’s the brand, and the emotional connection you’re working to develop with your followers, that is designed to withstand the competition. The stronger you make your brand - the stronger you are.
Trader Online Web Developer