When Bailey Met The Vlogger

Once upon a time there was a Caravan company named Bailey, they sat around for ages thinking about how best to get their caravan message out. One day someone suggested they go bigger on social media to see if other people would spread the word and tell the world about their new products. Bailey opened their arms to the Vloggers, who came in their droves to feast their eyes upon twin axles, bunk bed, 8ft wide caravans and not forgetting caravan accessories….

Vlogger : A person who records themselves talking about their lives and uploads it to various video sites (Urban Dictionary)

We started our YouTube channel shortly after we replaced our Caravan. We had, for a few years owned a Sterling Eccles, but we changed to a Bailey. It was really then when I started to notice some sort of relationship between vloggers and Bailey.

It only seemed to be Bailey, I hadn’t noticed, what you might call “normal people”, or maybe a better term; caravanners, reviewing new Swift, Elddis or Adria etc caravans.

I started to wonder why this was. If you look on You Tube, you’ll see the You Tube Channel “Caravan TV” reviewing Swift, they don’t have that many subscribers and viewing numbers aren’t high. You do get the odd one of course, but these will generally have more than 20,000 subscribers.

In a way, I can understand why businesses wouldn’t want to be involved with Vloggers. Most vloggers, are like myself, not particularly great film makers and not at all polished in front of the camera, well, not like professional presenters. We “umm” too much and lose track of what we’re saying occasionally. We can also have that horrible tendency to tell the truth and be honest. If I review anything, I’ll pick holes in it. I think I owe it to anyone watching, I want to build trust. “The sink looks great, but it’s completely impractical” I might say. But then, surely they’d get “real” reviews? I praise stuff I think it’s good and slate the stuff I think could be improved – isn’t that what people want to hear? But of course, if I was doing a review I’d be the one making the decisions about what went in and what didn’t.

So why do Bailey embrace the vlogger and others don’t? It was highlighted a little while ago on Twitter, some were getting a bit fed up with everything being about Bailey. I can understand this, I own one myself and I think there is a bit too much “Bailey banter”.

Of course, it’s been more about recently Bailey because they have just released a bunch of new caravans. Many vloggers were invited to have a look around and film what they saw. In some ways it’s really great, but in other ways it’s not so good at all.

One of the disadvantages and one of the reasons I didn’t attend, is that I’d feel like I almost had to only say good things about the caravans. I’m not a journalist, I don’t review anything for a living. I can, however, give you real life experiences, not just something like “Oh that cooker is nice” or “I like the soft close drawers” which is what I’d end up saying after being in a caravan for 15 minutes.

I have theories of course, but I’m not happy that they reflect reality. I normally talk myself out of them after a while. In one example, I started thinking maybe Bailey are the only caravan company that are happy to let vloggers loose and be at the mercy of their critique. Well, that could be true, but then Bailey know vloggers are so keen to get content, they’ll attend unpaid, get a free lunch and go and do a positive review about whatever you put in front of them. Bailey get the review they want, the vlogger gets the content they want.

I don’t currently attend launch events (mainly, because I’m not invited). However, I’m sure if I did attend I’d get carried away on the day, I do like Bailey caravans, so would I really be able to be all that impartial? I’m a nice guy, go on, buy me lunch, say nice things about my YouTube channel and I’ll be your friends forever, and probably give a review stating what a bunch of nice people they are – I really am that shallow…..

As always with me, I can see both sides though. I think I know why Bailey use vloggers and I know why most vloggers attend Caravan unveilings. What I don’t understand is exactly why others, such as Swift and Adria aren’t so keen?

I’m interested to now what you think and I’d appreciate it if you took the time to comment below..

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4 COMMENTS

  1. That’s a very honest and most likely true assessment, when I first started on Twitter I watched a lot of “help” videos which I assumed were there to help me but I slowly realised that a lot of the bloggers were simply trying to push me towards buying a product because they thought it was great or more likely because they were being paid to push me towards a product. Refreshingly a lot of these bloggers told me beforehand that they were trying to sell me something or direct me towards something and that scenario is fine, but when they blatantly push it hiding this as advice I don’t like it and it pushes me away from a product.

  2. Thanks for the comment Mike. It’s difficult as some making a living doing this vlogging stuff, so they in some ways become like a sales person running adverts. “Hi I’m Barry Scott” haha
    I look at reviews about other things, cameras being one. I like to build up “trust” with the person vlogging before taking their advice. You get to know who’s just a manufacturers puppet and who’s willing to review something worts and all…
    Graham

  3. I have got nothing positive to say about Bailey, the build quality of their leisure vehicles be it caravan or MH, and their attitude to after sales is really disappointing.
    I don’t use other people’s twitter or YT as a platform for my opinions, and this has been very difficult due to the high proportion of Bailey content that has been released this year.

    What is true though is that they Bailey,have been far more inclusive of social media than any other UK brand. I suppose only time and a balance spreadsheet will determine whether the risk reward balance has been achieved.

  4. Hi Graham.
    I’ve been to one. I think Bailey are doing the right thing. If you look at my stuff soon I have a small surprise! They don’t mind if you critique their vans at a launch. Their lunch is usually great😂
    Cheers Oliver

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