The RV Rental business has thrived in 2020. Many owners have caught on and have listed their units on rental platforms for the first time. You’ve also noticed and decided to start this new venture. With all of these new listings, you should now ask yourself. How can I make my rental listing stand out above the rest?
Listing your RV as a rental is a small business, and you have to treat it as such. All successful businesses emphasize the importance of Branding. What is Branding? It’s a culmination of a name, logo, colors, imagery, and voice. But most importantly, Branding is the feeling you invoke with your renters. Take a moment to think about a few of your favorite companies. Starbucks, Apple, Coca-Cola. They all have a specific brand. What kind of feelings emerge when you think of these names? Do you remember meeting your friends at a Starbucks for a coffee and a chat? Do you remember your first Apple purchase? Do you remember watching Santa Claus drink an ice cold Coca-Cola during Christmas time? All of those memories began with Branding. So how can you incorporate that mindset into your RV rental?
What’s in a Name?
Were you one of the majority who named their very first car? I was. My first vehicle was a white 1998 Dodge Dakota. I named her Betty. When I think of Betty, I think about the freedom I felt when pulling out of my parents’ driveway. The feeling of independence when I filled up the gas tank at 98 cents a gallon, with my own hard-earned money. The capability of driving to the local Sonic’s during lunch hour at school. Betty gave me freedom. Although I chose to be alone for most of my high school career, I was never really alone because I had Betty. She and I shared so many memories together. Betty wasn’t just a vehicle or a means of transportation. She was my confidant, my listener, and my sidekick. But she wouldn’t have been all of those things without a proper name. Her name gave her a personality.
Does your RV have a name? Our first unit is named JOEY. He’s become a bit of an icon with our friends and renters. When we think of JOEY, it makes us think of words like ‘cute, cozy, bright, home’. JOEY has become a part of our family and our renters have said the same about theirs. How would others describe your named unit at the first meeting? Giving a name to a unit gives it life. It gives your RV an identity and creates a personality. The name develops a persona and it becomes a member of your family, instead of just another possession. It creates that same idea with your renters.
Refer To Your Unit By Name
If your unit has a name, this name should be used in every context of your rental. Incorporate it into your listing. Refer to it by name during the initial communication with potential renters. Treat it as a person and your renters will do the same. Referring to your unit by name sets the tone for the adventures awaiting your renters. Once your renters start referring to your RV by name, they begin to envision what it would be like to share memories with ‘JOEY’.
We recently had a renter that booked specifically because of JOEY’s name. As an essential worker, she needed to get away and reconnect in some way. She shared with us that she was hopeful this trip would do just that for her. She also shared that she already felt a connection with JOEY. You see, our unit shared more than a feeling for her. JOEY shared a name with her passed father. It was a touching moment when she shared this with us. She knew deep down that her father would be there with her in spirit, and he would do it through our RV. Can you imagine the feelings invoked for both of us? These are the types of moments we enjoy sharing with our guests. A small connection in some way. And it starts with something as simple as a name.
Target Your Audience
A Target Audience is important in the success of your small business. In order to land the rental, you first have to know who your prime renter is. What kind of audience will benefit most from your unit. How many people can your unit sleep? Can it be taken off road? Do you mind if it goes to a music festival? Asking yourself some of these questions will help narrow down your target audience.
By definition, a target audience is “a group of people defined by certain demographics and behavior.” It’s important to know who will best fit your unit. If you have a small travel trailer with one bed, it may not be suitable for a family. If your unit has manual mechanisms like manual jacks, it may make it more difficult for an older retired couple looking to rent an RV. Knowing your unit inside and out will help to better target your audience. Once you figure out who your target audience is, that’s when you…
Sell The Dream, Not The Unit
Your unit is special. You know that. Now your renters need to learn how special your unit is. What makes your RV unique? What makes it stand out? Branding your unit can help it to stand out in a sea full of listings. You can start by listing specific items and services you provide. Develop trust with your renters by providing exceptional service. Keep your unit maintained & bright. All of this is part of your brand. Set the bar high & maintain consistency.
If your unit has an outdoor kitchen, create a vision for your guests. Describe what it would be like to cook outdoors with their family sitting at a nearby picnic table. Sell the dream, not the unit. Does it have an outdoor shower? Help your renters envision themselves washing off their sandy feet after a full day at the beach. Sell the dream, not the unit. How about bunk beds? Imagine tucking your little ones into a cozy bed after a long day of exploring. Sell the dream, not the unit.
Noting these tips and Branding your RV will forge a connection to your unit. Your renters will take pride in your RV, just as you do. They’ll see how important your RV is to your family. When people cherish items, others will cherish them as well. The brand for your rental will begin to take on a life of its own and you’ll reap the benefits. Developing a brand for your RV will help you to stand out above the other rentals. It makes you unique. It shows pride in your work. And it will help build lifelong trust with your guests.