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What I’d Do: Start a weekly, walk-through tradition with your skiers.

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I don’t have an in-depth research piece or game-changing idea for you today, just a simple concept that’s tickled my brain the last few days.

The idea is really simple.

What if every week (or so), you invited 5-10 guests to walk and/or ski through the resort with you?

From their cars to the ticket office to the chair to the summit to the lodge, what if you just walked and talked about what they think or love or get frustrated by or experience or remember? Things like:

  • What signage has confused them before
  • What messages (if any) got them to come today or in the past
  • What views are their favorites
  • Favorite memories in various locations
  • Things they know now but wish they’d known sooner about the resort
  • Marketing ideas they have (we all know they’ll have some)

The idea wouldn’t be to just do this, but do this on a regular basis so you could do walk through with decades-long passholders one week and beginners the next..

And start to file away all the lessons you learn from each group.

Marketing Value
I think there’s plenty of value for others at the resort in operations or whatever, so maybe they’d want to tag along, but even if you keep it focused on marketing I think this would do three things.

#1) New Eyes
You’ve pulled up to this mountain and walked through it thousands of times. And, so being, it’s hard to see it through the eager eyes of a newbie or someone who comes ones a week but wishes it were daily. It will help you see your resort as they see it, instead of how you see it.

#2) Ideas
As you walk with these people and listen to their stories and memories and ideas, you’re gonna get a ton of ideas of your own. Maybe it’s an awesome story to tell on camera, maybe it’s a way to better help newcomers find their way around, maybe it’s just the words they use.

#3) Loyalty
There’s something about being listened to and having a “friend” near the top that just pushes a relationship between a human and a brand forward in ways other things simply cannot. Do this with 10 people a week over an entire season? And you’ll end up with hundreds of people who feel much closer to your resort than they did the year before.

Include a little “join the marketing team on one of our weekly walks” CTA to the bottom of your email templates, link to a Calendly page for folks to sign up, and then the only time required on your end would be showing up.

Would you get some lame ideas? Sure. Would you get some rants and complaints? Sure.

But would you also learn a ton that no survey or data visualization or conference talk could even reveal? Absolutely.

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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