img_0243How to live the dream, start a successful business and save humanity, one shiny Airstream at a time…
It’s a vacation getaway, it’s a food truck, it’s a clothing boutique, it’s a hair salon, it’s a million dollar business…and it’s all run out of a trailer?
img_0244It seems like everywhere we look lately, there’s a shiny Airstream glistening around the corner. According to the mobile-living king, Airstream, there has been a huge resurgence in people looking to buy — and it’s not their typical retiree market.
Airstream sales are up 500% from 2009, and Airstream’s parent company, Thor Industries, grossed over $3.5 billion in RV sales last year, according to Bloomberg. So why Airstreams, why now? It’s a well known fact that Airstreams are iconic; they’re durable, highly functional , and of course, beautiful. But why the sudden craze?
There’s a new generation of dreamers who are challenging traditional ways of life and looking to pave their own way on their own terms. Young couples are quitting their desk jobs and trading in sky-high mortgages for a life of freedom and simplicity in a house and/or business on wheels. Some are taking to the mountains, seeking experiences rooted in self-reflection and soul searching. Others are creating business startups and taking their company a new route through mobile marketing.
With ever-evolving technology, young professionals are able to live and work on the road without having to “rough it.” Solar panels and inverters power standard electric appliances without being plugged into “the grid.” Integrated internet technology allow you to get WI-FI, cell service and satellite connectivity, so you don’t miss a single Facebook status update while on the road and miles away from the nearest Ethernet cable.
Living on the road and working remotely seems dreamy, but does a mobile business make sense? Why have a mobile business? Like food trucks, these mobile businesses are focusing on bringing their goods straight to your front door. It’s all about connecting with your customer. While online services make shopping easily accessible from the comfort of our homes, it can be difficult to get a true sense of a product just by looking at it on a screen. It’s hard to connect with a customer if you never get to interact with them. And no, I’m not talking about sending a promotional email, or web-based advertising campaign. Companies are looking to personalize the consumer’s experience by bringing a truly interactive and intimate experience and all powered by… HUMANS!
Boutique Clothing company, Kit and Ace, want people to experience their Signature Technical Cashmere by inviting them to physically touch its super-soft material. But it’s not just the touch of their clothing – the personal touch an actual interaction will leave a more memorable impact than any Retina photo or HD video could ever achieve.
One of the world’s largest food retailers, Ahold USA, wanted to share the good in their Nature’s Promise products. So they decided on a mobile pop-up-shop to openly display some of their “Free-from,” better-for-you choices. Today, the Nature’s Promise Airstream travels the East Coast showing people the ingredients in their items.
After travelling throughout Australia in their HofArc custom Airstream, Wallabee owners have started their own little Airstream business. Created in the spirit of getting to know the people in their community, this Airstream family is creating conversation and spreading the Airstream love, one pizza at a time.
Some companies are even going beyond the classic silver bullet look and opting for other recreational vehicles to promote their product. Popular healthy beverage brand Clearly Kombucha jumped on the mobile-marketing bandwagon (or van in this case), to spread the word about their unique and refreshing flavors. In a vibrant Mercedes Sprinter, the team hit the road to give the Western U.S. a real taste of what they’re all about.
Airstreams come in different shapes, sizes and uses. Companies from all over are going back in time and reinventing a thing of the past — face to face communication — through these iconic vessels. Today, the Airstream community has become more than just a group of shiny trailer enthusiasts, it has evolved into a movement that is passionate about creating interpersonal relationships and bringing people together.

By joanna krenich
Hofmann Architecture, who has gained a reputation for transforming vintage Airstreams into works of art, is excited more than ever to be a part of this growing community. “I’m interested in sharing my knowledge with others, and pushing the boundaries of what an Airstream can look like and what it can do,” said Hofmann Architecture Founder, Matthew Hofmann. “I want to travel, talk to people and find out what they are excited by, what their dreams are, and make that a reality for them in my designs. We are only scratching the surface of what’s possible!”