The Venn Diagram of Camping

I was watching a TV show the other day that features families on the quest to purchase a recreational vehicle (RV). Different shows feature different families. One was of an older mother and daughter looking to move out of the house. Another was a family with 8 kids looking for affordable family vacations. Some want to be able to haul their Harley Davidson motorcycles. While I applaud these people for getting out, there is a remarkable level of conspicuous consumption involved with the whole thing.

Which brings me to the final couple. This one particular couple were empty nesters looking for a Class A RV that cost less than $325,000 (an incredible amount for the vast majority of Americans). They were looking at a 40 footer (which cannot visit many National Parks due to length restrictions) that had several slide outs. But the wife was concerned that it only had one TV and the floors were not heated. The husband’s response was, “Well, we ill be camping.”

NO! No they will not be camping.

Traveling in a 40 foot RV that requires full hook ups to supply the water for dual headed showers and is not allowed in many National Parks is not camping. That is why they are called motorhomes not motor tents. For those who need help identifying “camping”, I offer this Venn Diagram of camping. It is not all inclusive but it covers 99.9% of all campers.

Interesting marketing

Leafing through the circulars I received in the mail the other day, this montage of logos caught my eye. I thought that I had received the latest REI flyer until I looked a bit closer. It was a circular from Sportsman’s Warehouse.

Normally, Sportsman’s is associated with the hook & bullet crowd. But this flyer had no mention of hunting or firearms and only a small section on fishing. The main theme was about family; hiking together, camping together and fishing together.

They seem to be trying to attract a wider customer base than they have traditionally relied on. With their pending acquisition by Great American Outdoors Group (Bass Pro/Cabela’s), they will be part of a national chain of over 165 stores.

The company will be well positioned to carve off a significant junk of the outdoor dollars, particularly with smart marketing like this.