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January 30, 2007

Deer Valley Hip to Technology

I posted a couple of weeks ago about Deer Valley reaching out to promote their Freestyle FIS World Cup Event via video at

I have spent the better part of the day trying to make appointments to meet with some PR departments at various resorts so that I can get details on what they are doing to make skiing affordable or to reach young, hip, technologically advanced folks. Two big projects of mine. Skiing affordability and the impact of technology on the industry. And by that I don't mean new binding or new ski designs, but radical changes in the add on products that we all use. About half the resorts totally blew me off and won't even return my calls when I try to get comments and info about these topics. "You are just a blogger, not a real journalist and therefore we don't have time to even talk to you." Of something like that.

The scoop on the recent freestyle competition is posted at their site, but Erin Grady does a video that is awesome (posted below the fold).

I called Erin to compliment her on the idea of podcasting and video podcasting that Deer Valley used. I told her that I posted the video on my site and any time she wanted to post similar stuff, to call me. She gets it. She gets the world that we live in. One where gadgets permeate everything we do. Smart Phones. iPods. GPS. Laptops. And according to GOB Bluth, "wireless crapability".

I go to a lot of resort websites and some are absolute crap. Nothing is ever updated but the ski report and even then it is simply xxx" of new snow, machine groomed, etc. Then I go to others like the ski report at Big Sky where Dax blogs about the conditions in detail as well as his exploits while out there skiing it. Dax was a major influence on me even starting a blog and TWISI is pimped.

I have been working on an article about new technology and its impact on the industry. I have a first person point of view because the advances that allow telecommuting and remote work (read--why call centers can go to India) are what allow me to work via DSL broadband from Brian Head instead of trudging 30 miles through rush hour traffic to downtown Phoenix. We take out laptops in the truck and work via telephone broadband while we are driving to multitask. I have a fat DVD in dash player in the Avy. I keep a GPS on my camelback. I have skull candy headphones for my iPod and Motorola Walkie Talkies. I occasionally send text messages from the lodge. My son Jake and brother Jackson play NCAA Football against each other on their PSP's while we are driving. In short, break into my truck and steal my stuff 'cause I have tons of gadgets that you can pawn for crack.

So Winter-X is over and ESPN promotes the crap out of it. They target that towards the iPod generation. Burton gets it and puts all kinds of stuff in their gear for it. Other manufacturers see what is happening.

Deer Valley is skier only (like Alta). Alta took out their terrain park this year and caters to an "authentic" ski experience. DV appears to be targeting a different group. The new wave of skiers. The kids that jib on twin tips and hit the superpipe. Kids with iPods and PSP's.

It was nice to speak with Erin who is making an effort to promote their resort the way my sponsor at the top VRI is promoting their Colorado Pass--via social networking sites, blogs,, pod casts, etc.

Erin's video:

The Avalance DVD Player.

Posted by Justin at January 30, 2007 05:09 PM


That video is sweet. I think ski-blog needs a videographer. Time to buy a camera my friend.

Posted by: Erich at February 2, 2007 01:38 AM

great job in talking with Erin an many other Marketing Depts. I remember when I was talking to Marketing Depts back in '95. They hardly knew what the internet was, much less how to use it. I remember telling them, "Those brochures in sporting goods stores, forget about it. Your customers will be going to the internet for all of their travel info." Not one believed me. Snowbird, Squaw, Breckenridge, Vail, Aspen. NOT ONE. Well, blogging will be huge. Forget the marketing fluff, I want the insight from the skiers and riders themselves.


Posted by: Jonathan Lawson at February 3, 2007 03:10 PM

thank you Justin for the interesting article and the nice video at youtube. :-)

Posted by: Bruno at February 5, 2007 01:07 AM