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Mainstream Media, Friend or Foe: A Midwest Ski Area Operator Weighs In

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As I recently mentioned, it’s time to find answers. Today, that’s exactly what I want to do.

Last week Scott Meyer of Illinois’ Ski Snowstar shared a frustration about the negative impact of media outlets chasing headlines over facts. When neither of us had a solution to this often localized problem, he was kind enough to put together a quick post and share the question with all of you in the hope of finding someone who does have the answer.

Friend or Foe
In our local area, the media outlets on the surface have been very kind to us, covering all the fun events that we snow lovers share.

On the flip side, they do immeasurable damage to our marketing efforts.

The slightest little weather events exude extreme headlines which are often embellished by the local personalities. Weather bulletins that warn of “dangerous cold (STAY INDOORS!)”, “DEADLY driving conditions”, “DO NOT travel” become story headlines.

Mixed Messages
Additionally, the on air personalities add to the panic simply because they personally do not like winter or any fun that can come with it when widening your horizons beyond your living room. They pass their personal opinions on as judgement that should encompass all humanity.

But humans were not meant to hibernate. We do not ski naked, we dress in the proper layers. Just as in the summer, we shed the layers when its extremely hot. It’s simply common sense.

This is the same mainstream media that pushes the agenda that our society has become lazy couch potatoes. Yet, their take on winter weather discourages people from being active. Winter enthusiasts all know this, so I am preaching to the choir.

What to Do?
So what do we do about it? Is it a lost cause? I honestly do not know. But I do know if we don’t put up a fight and share our tenacity to get out and enjoy winter, then it becomes a self fulfilling prophecy.

We have even tried to get the media to embrace winter by offering them freebies at our resort, get out and enjoy it all. This seems to work to a certain extent, but have found them to be fair weather participants and they fall victim to their glorified headlines.

Sooooo….stay the course, hammer out your messages on your social media outlets, newsletters, etc. Get people to comment and support your viewpoint. Perhaps that is not enough, and I suspect it is not.

Please, share with me your ideas and thoughts that can take this battle to the next level.

About Gregg & SlopeFillers
I've had more first-time visitors lately, so adding a quick "about" section. I started SlopeFillers in 2010 with the simple goal of sharing great resort marketing strategies. Today I run marketing for resort ecommerce and CRM provider Inntopia, my home mountain is the lovely Nordic Valley, and my favorite marketing campaign remains the Ski Utah TV show that sold me on skiing as a kid in the 90s.

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