One of the greatest challenges that any business owner faces is how to spread the word about their business. With so many other entrepreneurs out there marketing what they do, it can be tough knowing how to stand above the noise — especially on a tight budget.
As Outdoorsy owners, we benefit from a competitive advantage by having Outdoorsy’s marketing muscle behind us. Because Outdoorsy has a shared interest in helping us rent our RVs, they invest in paid advertising, content marketing, SEO optimization, and a host of other marketing tactics that we benefit from as owners.
While this is a tremendous leg up for us, it is still vital that we take the reins of some of our own marketing as Outdoorsy owners. Whether you have a fleet of one or one-hundred RVs, there are simple and affordable marketing strategies that you should be deploying to maximize bookings.
Here are the must-do marketing tactics for any Outdoorsy owner.
1. Design Your Own Website or Facebook Page
Even if you only rent out the one RV that you also use for your own vacations, you should still get a simple landing page together because it’ll act like your stand-alone business card that shows people what you’re up to.
By having your own webpage, you also afford yourself more space to tell your story, craft your brand, and to show off your campers. For example, my wife and I renovate vintage Airstreams, so we created this before and after page to inspire people to rent our rigs.
Important note: While a web page is a vital marketing tool, you should always be sure to link your site visitors back to Outdoorsy when they’re ready to book. That way, you will have all your communication logged, be covered by Outdoorsy insurance options, and be able to easily manage your booking calendar.
2. Have a Good Quality Listing
Be sure your listing is top-notch. Some of the best marketing you can do is to invest the time needed to be sure your listing will stand out. Check out Outdoorsy’s guides on taking awesome listing photos and writing a stellar listing description for help making your RV shine.
3. Add Fun and Original Photos
Create a win-win to get fun and original photos for your listing. For example, one Outdoorsy owner we chatted with has a wedding on wheels program where people can rent a hip camper as a fun hang out spot for a wedding reception.
In return, this owner was given several unique and professional photos that really made her listing stand out!
4. Be Yourself
Be YOU in your listing. Prospective renters really enjoy getting to know your story, and it will make you stand out.
Do you have special camping memories in the camper you’re renting?
What is it that makes you so passionate about getting people into the outdoors?
Why do you offer your RV up for rent?
By answering questions like these for prospective renters, you’ll help them connect with your story and see what makes you shine.
5. Connect with Local Business
Connect with a local car dealership and offer coupons for your camper rental(s). Any car dealership that deals in trucks and other outdoor vehicles will likely have a camping-centric clientele. Why not create a win-win with a dealership like this where they hand out coupons for your RV rental to car buyers who express an interest in camping?
To create a coupon, simply generate a unique discount code for your Outdoorsy listing and print off some paper coupons with that code for the auto dealership to hand out. Just don’t forget to also put your unique website URL on the coupon!
6. Share Your Listing
Share your rental listing with local state parks and day-use areas. Many state parks have both day-use and overnight camping sections. People that use the day-use areas such as picnic shelters and boat launches could be a great target market for your rentals. These folks are already enjoying the area for the day, so the chances are strong they’d consider camping there overnight at some point in the future.
Many of these state parks also allow brochures about local attractions in their offices, so you could chat with the office staff to see if you can leave information about your local RV rentals.
7. Maintain a Uniformed Social Media Presence
Have a focused presence on social media. If you try to be everywhere on social media, you’ll quickly get overwhelmed. Instead, figure out the 1-2 social media platforms that make the most sense for your RV rental business and focus on them. For example, if you rent out vintage or hip rigs, Instagram could be great because you can visually highlight the uniqueness of your campers.
8. Include a Video Tour
Feature a video tour of your rig on Outdoorsy. Prospective renters love video walkthroughs. By putting together a short video tour of your RV, you’ll set your listing above the pack.
9. Seek Reviews and Testimonials
Proactively seek out reviews and testimonials. Outdoorsy helps us out by encouraging renters to leave reviews within the platform, and you can take this further with proactive steps that encourage positive and detailed reviews:
- Communicate with your renter during the rental period to request that they let you know of anything that’s less than 5-star-review-worthy so you can make it right.
- Follow up after the rental period to ensure your renter had a stellar experience. Remind your renter that you love getting detailed reviews from everyone you rent to.
- Add all your positive reviews onto your webpage or Facebook page so they show up in multiple locations.
10. Get Referrals
Ask your renters for referrals. If someone has a great experience with your RV, they should be more than happy to help spread the word to their friends, but they probably won’t do it unless you ask! You could even get creative and offer any past renters a future discount if they send new people your way.
11. Keep Local Events on Your Radar
Stay on top of local events. NASCAR races, state and county fairs, concerts, and a slew of other events usually have large camping areas. Many event attendees may want to camp but lack a camper. That’s why a bit of guerilla marketing around these events can really help your RV rental business thrive. For example, you could link up with Facebook groups or pages for these events to ask people if they know of anyone needing a camper rental.
Or, you could camp at the event one year and chat directly with attendees about renting your RV(s) for the following year’s event.
Or, you could even speak with event organizers about offering discount coupons for your RV rentals to event attendees.
If you decide to target certain events, be sure to also highlight the event name(s) in your title or description to attract attendees of that event to your listing.
12. Offer Additional Services
Offer drop off and set up as an add-on service. Many people who might want to camp in an RV are scared off by the fact that they’ve never driven or set up a camper before.
You can clear this hurdle and capture this rental traffic by offering to drop off and set up your camper for an additional fee. Outdoorsy even allows you to limit the range for your drop-offs, so you can decide how near or far from home you’re willing to go.
Starting to Strategize?
Standing above the crowd with your RV rental business can be a challenging proposition, but it’s not impossible nor does it need to be very costly. By sticking with the cost-effective marketing strategies above, you’ll be geared up to capture a nice slice of the RV rental market.