By Blake Burris – Business Development Manager, NewBook
Ahhh…The ARVC Outdoor Hospitality Conference & Expo. One of the most highly anticipated conferences we all look forward to year after year.
It’s such a special time to reconnect with everyone and catch up on the year that was.
On the Sunday before it all kicked off, myself and the NewBook team made our way to Orlando, Florida and the excitement and buzz was high!
Margaritaville Welcome Party
The show started with an epic welcome party at the iconic Margaritaville. Is there a better place for a party? An explosion of tropical décor and attire set the tone for what was a memorable night of getting back in touch with old friends, meeting new friendly faces, and some healthy competition on the mini golf course.
Preparing Your RV Park & Campground for Electric Vehicles
Come Tuesday, everyone filed into the conference to kick off with some insightful keynotes and discussions on Electric Vehicles. We’ve been working with ARVC and friends to craft an interactive EV Toolkit, so I was lucky enough to be a panelist on a session called ‘Your Campground’s EV Roadmap.’
As I walked on stage, I felt lucky to share the discussion with people in the industry I admire and look up to. It was enlightening to hear so much wisdom shared with the audience, and the passion everyone shares for the industry is inspiring!
Have you ever heard about the automated meter reading setup at Torrey Trails RV & Golf Resort? Amir Harpaz shared his journey to implementing a streamlined and unique process for meter readings, and you need to hear about it! Check out his case study in the EV Toolkit.
EV Guide Key Takeaways
INSIGHT 1: Just over half of passenger cars sold in the US will be electric vehicles by 2030
WHAT THIS MEANS FOR YOU: The demand for charging stations at RV Parks and Campgrounds is growing. By offering this technology your park will be ahead of the trends and a #1 choice for campers now and into the future.
INSIGHT 2: Having staff manually walk around to read meters is a significant cost in time and money.
WHAT THIS MEANS FOR YOU: Implementing an integration with your PMS, such as Wild Energy, means that you can automatically track, monitor and bill guests for their electricity usage upon check-out with a click of a button.
NewBook VIP 1980s Event
After a jam-packed day of learning, it was time to channel my inner 1980s character at the NewBook VIP event, followed by the ARVC reception. I’m pretty sure no one even recognized me in my costume. Seventy-five of our much-loved partners, customers, and future customers came along to enjoy 80s-inspired cocktails, a roving magician, and a whole lot of laughs. Everyone got involved and dressed up, which made it even better, and we even got to meet the stars from back-to-the-future. We ended the night with some groovy 80s dance moves and then headed home to pack our dancing shoes away (until next year).
NewBook Panel hosted by COO Erin
NewBook COO, Erin took to the stage on Wednesday to host a panel with four experienced campground operators, and what an insightful discussion this was. About 200 people came along as our panelists shared their top tips and secrets on how they create efficiencies, drive revenue and create memorable guest experiences. The audience was encapsulated, and learning from real campground operators was a huge hit.
Hearing how passionate Erin is was an inspiration. She created such an incredible buzz and learning environment. Everyone walked away with a wealth of knowledge and I certainly look up to Erin as one of my great leaders here at NewBook.
Panel Key Takeaways
INSIGHT 1: Automation can increase team retention, save on labor costs and reduce manual processes.
WHAT THIS MEANS FOR YOU: Rather than manually sending booking confirmation emails every time someone calls or places a booking online, automate that process and win back 10 seconds off each booking to give you more time to focus on your business. Other tasks you can automate include guest surveys, reports, SMS, post-checkout emails, electronic signable documents, plus loads more!
INSIGHT 2: Getting creative on how you can maximize revenue in your business is essential for you to scale and grow that revenue to reinvest back into your business.
WHAT THIS MEANS FOR YOU: Assess what you offer to your guests and what you can start charging for. Some of our panelists suggestions include offering Site Selection for $2.50 per day, or allow guests to bring their fury friends for $35 per pet, per day!
The #1 tip you should immediately think about in your business is manipulating your rates and using Dynamic Pricing. Trust me, it’s not as scary as it sounds, so get on the phone to your PMS provider and ask for their advice and assistance on how to get started with it – ASAP!
For the remainder of the show, we had an awesome time at the NewBook booth meeting new people and sharing how NewBook can bring value to their business. Helping operators understand how they can better run their business puts a huge smile on my face, and its what we love doing.
Wrapping up the show and saying our goodbyes were bittersweet. It was the first time in two years that our team from Australia could make it over due to COVID, and we just had such an awesome time.
Thank you, National Association of RV Parks and Campgrounds. We’ll be seeing you in Kansas City in 2023…
What was your favorite memory from the show?