At Dallas New Tech January, Jerry King pitched his company Bonfire that brands itself as a simple RV reservation management tool. King initially launched a site called RV Spotfinder that was similar to hotels.com in where avid RVers could search for the best and cheapest campgrounds available. In his talk, King mentions that there are over 14,000 RV parks and campgrounds in America and several booking sites like RV Spotfinder for campers to use.
“But we like to listen to our customers (RV parks) who said that we don’t want to pay all of this money to put us up against everyone else competing in the geographic market,” King stated while speaking about conversations he has had with his clients. “I’d rather just have a way to actually market to my customers by having them come to my website and do online booking.”
Many RV parkers still use old antiquated software or the classic pen and paper. There is a daily struggle to meet and keep track of RV parks’ clients while at the same time attracting new visitors who rely on new technology to book vacations. This is where Bonfire comes in. The simple reservation platform is designed to help parks manage every aspect of their business. Letsbonfire.com offers:
- Basic software for booking
- Industry reports to keep track of business and competition
- CRM function which helps keep customer information
- Unique URL for the companies that will allow easier online booking
- Payment processing through online means
If customers want to have a customized site, there is a monthly subscription service that gives them access to all the benefits of Bonfire and they, in turn, take a small fee. They also make it a point that the company is not required to sign a contract to use the service.
At launch in January 2016, Bonfire started with 2 customers and a freemium model. At the beginning of this year, they have 15 active customers with 14 of paying subscription services. By June of 2017, King hopes to break-even with 50 parks using Bonfire’s services.
Be sure to check out his pitch below.