With 40,000 people viewing the first episode of ‘Friday RV Cooking’, it is clear Green RV’s latest recipe to inspire Australia’s growing number of young caravan enthusiasts is on the right track.
The innovative Queensland-based caravan dealership launched the weekly online cooking series in March to feature the company’s modern caravan offering in a candid and interactive way.
It’s a ploy you’d expect from Green RV's chief executive Jack Green, who at 26 years of age is at the helm of one of the state’s fastest growing caravan dealership groups.
Green’s father and company director Carl Green started the business as a humble car yard in Gympie in 1998 – and they began selling caravans in 2010. Now the family business turns over $30 million across four dealerships in Queensland and Victoria.
The enthusiastic CEO said the company’s biggest growth opportunity was targeting the younger caravan generation, but it has meant driving off the beaten track to find them.
“Young families and couples are highly engaged online - and with endless resources and information available, they know exactly what value to expect for their money,” Mr Green says.
“They don’t just read a book and roll in like they did 20 years ago. It’s an exciting shake-up for an industry which has traditionally focussed all of its efforts on the grey nomad market.”
According to the Caravan Industry Association of Australia, almost two thirds (64 per cent) of holiday-makers taking to the open roads are aged under 55.
Having grown from one to four dealerships in just five years, Green RV is geared to capitalise on the opportunity. In 2015 the company also launched its own line of caravans, NextGen Caravans, to better accommodate the modern caravanner.
“The industry is flooded with manufacturers - and many don’t survive because they are offering products which are old and stale,” he says.
“We have represented a number of brands over the years, but they would come and go making it difficult to build genuine customer loyalty.
“We wanted a product which could grow with Green RV and adapt to the changing needs of the industry.”
Within just 12 months, 100 NextGen caravans were sold in Queensland alone – an early indication that dipping their toe into manufacturing was paying off.
“You get to know what customers want - add-ons such as external speakers and bigger tires are expected as standard, but many manufacturers are slow to adjust,” Mr Green says.
“We are working with an experienced Melbourne manufacturer giving us the agility to innovate and push boundaries with NextGen.”
Mr Green said the mini-series Friday RV Cooking was part of the company’s strategy to humanise the brand in the market.
“You can’t compete on price against the big guys like Jayco, but you can offer a far better experience from the moment they join the Green RV family,” he says.
“Caravanning is all about having fun – and we want to showcase how that is possible with our products.
“The cooking series features our caravans in various locations across the state, inspiring people to realise caravanning is an achievable and enjoyable experience.”
With sales for NextGen Caravans alone expected to double this year, it’s a bright road ahead for Green RV as manufacturing opens up a raft of growth pathways for the business.
“We’ll be increasing stock across existing dealerships, identifying opportunities to expand our footprint nationally via new sites and inter-state dealers,” Mr Green says.