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Old 04-29-2020, 10:57 PM   #1
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Hi again everyone,

I'd like to quickly thank those who responded to my last post, much appreciated. My team and I have made progress in developing cookware for use outdoors and have implemented the values and needs of our 60 or so interviewees into the design. That being said, we are now working to learn about marketing strategies and how to get the word out when the product is finished.

What I'd really like to know is how you do research to find the right product and where you ultimately purchase your gear! Do you read magazines or online articles to learn more about potential products? Are there specific stores you explore when looking for outdoor gear or items for your van? Do you prefer shopping online or in physical stores?

Does social media ever influence your purchase decision, and if so, what platform(s) do you use? Are there specific pages or influencers you're drawn to?

If you have the time, answer all the questions you can! Feel free to add any additional details as well such as price ranges or disappointing purchases. The more information I collect, the better the end product will become so I appreciate any responses.

Thank you for your time.
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Old 04-30-2020, 01:23 AM   #2
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Here's the link to my last post
https://www.classbforum.com/forums/f...ing-10073.html
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Old 04-30-2020, 10:56 AM   #3
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The pots & pans etc. that I use in RV's are typical lower price point household stuff. Stainless steel pots with glass lids. Also, we use foil pans (often used more than once if they clean up well) or wrap item in foil in the bbq grill for roasted potatoes/vegetables etc.

Years ago, when we did some hiking/tenting I recall buying lightweight nesting cookware. Size & weight mattered. That would have been purchased from an outfitter type store or the camping aisle in a big box store.

I don't pay much attention to social media influencers but I'm likely in the minority. That type of marketing does appear to work well. I have been astonished to see how one recommendation for something when the same quality or better alternatives are available becomes the thing people have to buy. Lots of folks seem to prefer a recommendation over researching products themselves so you pretty much have to pursue that way of marketing IMO.
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Old 04-30-2020, 12:55 PM   #4
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The last social influencer that showed up in this forum was Mike Wendland of RV Lifestyle. At the time he was a total rookie in RVing and asked a lot of annoying (to me) questions. I didn't know he was a former TV investigative reporter so that was his style. I've got to know him in person since as well of the Russo's and James and Steph of the FitRV. They are all good people. However, I haven't bought a Radpower e-bike, Battleborn batteries or a solar cooker. I have listened to Wendland's podcast while working out in the gym as they tend to focus on others in the industry in interviews of interest.

They are mostly more entertaining than needful as I think I have more experience in B vanning than they and have benefitted more in this forum like this week finding a safe recommendation that answered a vexing question in my new design. I still have to find a way to get the weight down and solve a toilet behind the rear axle so investigated cassette toilets (way up on the fence on this) and found the Wendlands, Russo's and The FitRV did YouTube videos on them. Wendlands reviewed them but had no direct experience in any of their RVs, didn't advance anything I didn't know and ultimately didn't recommend them for themselves. Expected, since they have grown to a Class C from a Class B in space luxury. The FitRV didn't recommend them as they reviewed a porta-pottie as an equivalent to a cassette toilet but they strangely (again to me) gone on to embracing composting toilets which they also did a video review on that totally got me to dismiss them. The Russo's had a cassette toilet in their Zion and gave the most informational realistic review having hands on experience. The Russo's were interesting in that they used their cassette for number 1 and avoided number 2, a common foible with a lot of B vanners with any toilet in a van which is an intro for avanti to pipe in.
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Old 04-30-2020, 01:03 PM   #5
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This is off subject. But you might want to take a look at the Laveo toilet. Embassy rv is using them. Very interesting dry toilet. No water. Uses a vacuum seal system running on 12 volt battery. Only down side is one has to purchase their disposable bag system. But it will say weight and disposal fees.
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Old 04-30-2020, 01:13 PM   #6
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I think "influencers" come in very many different styles and types, and the usefulness of their information varies equally as much.


The most useful ones to me are the type that review things that they have gotten themselves and used in the real world. The least useful are the ones that review all sorts of things in a comparison and all you get is a list of "the 5 top rated XXXXXX" with stock pictures and links to places to buy them. My bet is many have never touched a lot of the stuff they review.


The whole premise can get pretty easily corrupted, I think, when the products are furnished by the sellers and they even supply written stuff to the influencer. On some things I have seen identical wording in multiple reviews and testimonials. If there are "but it here" links, usually all to Amazon, the information is almost always useless.
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Old 04-30-2020, 03:04 PM   #7
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Does social media ever influence your purchase decision, and if so, what platform(s) do you use? Are there specific pages or influencers you're drawn to.
Social media does not influence my purchase decisions.

For example, the toilet that I will have is the Separett Weekender. It is almost never mentioned outside the tiny house movement, but it makes absolute sense to me for a class B.
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Old 04-30-2020, 05:23 PM   #8
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This is off subject. But you might want to take a look at the Laveo toilet. Embassy rv is using them. Very interesting dry toilet. No water. Uses a vacuum seal system running on 12 volt battery. Only down side is one has to purchase their disposable bag system. But it will say weight and disposal fees.
I looked at it. It seems very proprietary in that you have to buy expensive waste bags and who knows if you can always get them. I noticed Wincrasher reviewed this in 2014. I wonder what he thinks of it now.
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Old 04-30-2020, 07:33 PM   #9
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cookware for the van?


looked at specialized products and found the pricing stupid


my wife worked commercial kitchens, we could have anything we want


weight and space requirements less crucial in our van and no "pot stacking" as it needs to be unstacked when you want something


our 'winner' cookware came from what we had & added a couple of pieces from goodwill


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Old 04-30-2020, 07:51 PM   #10
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We have a very nice set of Magma stacking pots and pans, compact and very good quality. But are barely ever used. Most of what we eat is off the gas grille or microwave, and lots of aluminum foil sheets and pans which we use a few times usually and then replace.
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Old 04-30-2020, 08:02 PM   #11
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Our cookware is pared down to three items: a large non-stick frying pan, a medium stockpot, and a medium coffee percolator without the guts (used only to heat water for drinks or washing). No matched sets because each one was carefully selected for multiple intended uses. All were found at discount stores.

The frying pan has a wide enough flat bottom to heat tortillas or cook 4 pancakes at a time and tall enough sides to manage a stir-fry. The stockpot is used for rice and pasta and big enough to steam crabs or boil several pounds of shellfish. We traded the glass lid for an aluminum one we had lying around because we have a no-glass rule for travel. We chose the percolator over a kettle because the tall, narrow shape fits better on a small stove, and the spout is easier to control when making pour-over coffee.

We like to cook (and grill) outside when camping and all three get a workout. I would certainly consider some better quality stuff if it were well-designed- tough, lightweight, easy-to-clean, and large enough for real scratch cooking. Most of the camping specialty stuff is more cute than practical.
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Old 04-30-2020, 09:26 PM   #12
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I looked at it. It seems very proprietary in that you have to buy expensive waste bags and who knows if you can always get them. I noticed Wincrasher reviewed this in 2014. I wonder what he thinks of it now.
Agree that Laveo toilet has limited applications.

Couldn't find any feedback from Wincrasher, but this video might make you think twice about the Laveo.
https://youtu.be/VTw_gccH4OQ
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Old 04-30-2020, 09:32 PM   #13
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Hi: I saw a person on YouTube. She swears by the Laveo. For #1. To save money on purchasing so many bags. She just adds vinegar to the bad. Allows it to sit without odor. Multiple uses with #1 before flushing so saves a bit. For #2 immediate flushing.

She orders multiple packs and carries on her van. I believe she lives full time in her van.
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Old 04-30-2020, 10:27 PM   #14
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Agree that Laveo toilet has limited applications.

Couldn't find any feedback from Wincrasher, but this video might make you think twice about the Laveo.
https://youtu.be/VTw_gccH4OQ
That is seriously disgusting, it can easily ruin a trip. I always thought that these style toilets including, semi composting ones, could be prone to some ugly incidents even with a minor diarrhea.
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Old 04-30-2020, 10:41 PM   #15
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...and a medium coffee percolator....

I forgot this- we use one complete, really enjoying the flavor of the perc'd coffee and the clean up is pretty easy


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Old 05-01-2020, 12:32 AM   #16
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Agree that Laveo toilet has limited applications.

Couldn't find any feedback from Wincrasher, but this video might make you think twice about the Laveo.
https://youtu.be/VTw_gccH4OQ
Wincrasher never mentioned it in his Class B Facebook group. I just checked.
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Old 05-01-2020, 06:02 PM   #17
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If I had a problem with my toilet I would not be shooting video to see it happen again with real waste, maybe oatmeal, but not the real thing.

Makes me suspicious......
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Old 05-01-2020, 06:19 PM   #18
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"Does social media ever influence your purchase decision"

Yes, whether I know it or not. There are a lot of folks out there trying to influence decisions, you can see that with some of the posts here.

We mostly bought stuff at garage sales or used our own extra kitchen stuff. With a small unit, multi-use is a must. At the local hardware store, we bought a cast iron griddle that fits on our induction stovetop and works outdoors on a camp stove.
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Old 05-01-2020, 08:24 PM   #19
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We bought a cast iron griddle, that fits on our induction stovetop and works outdoors on a camp stove at the local hardware store.
Picturing you camped out and cooking in front of the local hardware store... I guess since campgrounds are closed, that's one way to do it!
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Old 05-01-2020, 09:02 PM   #20
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Picturing you camped out and cooking in front of the local hardware store... I guess since campgrounds are closed, that's one way to do it!
Another would be to put in commas or avoid widely misplaced modifiers.
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