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Perspectives
I Made Four Resort Marketing Predictions for 2014, Here’s How I Did

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GREGG
BLANCHARD
       

Every January for the last handful of years I’ve been making predictions – 2014 was no exception. Those predictions were, in order:

  1. A Mid-Sized, Eastern (or Joint Onwership) Pass Partnership Will be Formed
  2. The Meteoric Rise of the Non-Core Marketer in Skiing
  3. The Triumphant Return of Email

So, how did I do? I thought you’d never ask.

1) A Mid-Sized, Eastern (or Joint Onwership) Pass Partnership Will be Formed
Result: CORRECT
This one might have been the safest bet of the lot, and sure enough it seems I got it right. There were three specifics I suggested might be part of it.

  • Mid-sized resorts
  • New England or mid-atlantic focus
  • Common ownership

While non fit the bill of all three, the Freedom Pass certainly matched the first two and the Intrawest Passport falls under number three. This year, I wouldn’t be surprised to see more of the same.

2) The Meteoric Rise of the Non-Core Marketer in Skiing
Result: WRONG
For some reason I can’t just predict moderate change, because that’s what happened. Did we see a “meteoric” rise in non-core resort marketers? No. Did we see a few here and there? Yes.

I was expecting this to be the year the industry tested this idea a bit more and reached out to other sectors to bring in people with incredible strengths in areas we haven’t yet developed as industry. Didn’t happen this year, maybe next.

3) The Triumphant Return of Email
Result: CORRECT
You’re probably saying, “Big surprise, Gregg, half of your posts were about email this year.” To which I’d respond, “Yes, but the biggest innovation had very little to do with what I wrote about.”

Truth be told, I could see this one coming and knew it had happened because of my “day job” at Ryan Solutions. As I mentioned on Monday, I don’t write about everything and this is one of those cases. Some of this stuff was really effective and impressive and it simply wouldn’t be fair to share it.

What a Minute
I know what some of you are saying, “Um, Gregg, you had FOUR predictions last year.” Well, yeah, sorta.

My last prediction was that this disconnect between the behavior of skiers and the stereotypes surrounding climate change would finally mix like mentos and coke to spark a backlash against the “save winter” movement that we’d have no control over. I made it under the disclaimer that it “may not happen in 2014 and it may not be bigger than a local paper” but it would happen…eventually.

This year has only heightened my concerns over this idea. I simply don’t feel that skiers themselves (resorts as a brand are another story) are the right ones to carry this torch.

We’ll see how it goes in 2015.



  • Kurt Gellert

    Hi Gregg. Catching up on holiday reading. Keep up the excellent work in 2015. What’s your definition of a “non-core marketer”? Agree with your comments regarding stereotypical skiers being the torch barer of climate change.

    • Hey Kurt, good to have you back. By non-core I mean non-core skier as a marketer. And by non-core skier, I mean a guy/gal who probably doesn’t buy a season pass, doesn’t attach themselves to ski culture, doesn’t care/know the rules of ski fashion, loves skiing but skis casually a few times a year and may (gasp) even go a year or two without skiing.

      • Kurt Gellert

        Thanks Gregg! That would be me if I did marketing in the ski resort industry. I’d love to be a “core” if only I had more PTO, dollars, and my wife supported more time away from home. :)

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