Ski Resort Marketers: Use your cell phone to boost midseason marketing

Greetings, ski resort marketers. It’s midseason. We hope you’re getting steady snow and that your most serious resort problems are related to lift-ticket lines, maxed out lodging, and instructors tired from teaching the a parade of new skiers to your slopes.

But our advice at this time is: Avoid falling into a recumbent marketing state of mind, and keep a flow of good data coming into your decision making.

A simple way of doing this is to use your phone to receive critical marketing updates, either through email alerts or—for more critical items—text alerts. We’ll show you how to setup those alerts in a minute. But first,

What alerts should you receive?

Here are our top 6 alerts:

  • Snow Report Spikes. No surprise here. You’d expect snow report engagement to be up during winter. But spikes can show if a particular link, tweet, or post is driving traffic to the report. When that alert hits your phone, it’s time to maximize your exposure (by increasing bandwidth for webcams showing conditions, for example) – and investigate the source of the traffic.
  • E-commerce checkout spikes and drops. If your e-commerce checkouts spike by 20%, you want to know about it. Get an alert and you can check the geography, product interest, and referral source of site visitors. Reminder: Pay attention to season pass trends throughout the back nine of the season. The data can spot trends and inform offers.
  • Coupon usage. Coupons are like lollipops. Pass them around and it’s hard not to consume them. So if usage is up, review distribution. A client of ours found out that someone put flyers on windshields in the parking lot. People were already at the mountain. That meant lost revenue for the mountain. Yuck. By seeing an alert of spikes in coupon activity, they were able to hop all over the problem early.
  • Adwords spikes. Adwords anomalies can be helpful. When a client witnessed a spike in season pass sales from Adwords in October, we doubled down, increasing the spend and capitalizing on the moment. Without the alert, we’d have lost some visibility during a high-visibility window.
  • Abandonment Rate. Spikes in abandonment rates for e-commerce can indicate some problems that need to get resolved quickly. Example: A DCI change in Siriusware might trigger an online customer exodus.
  • Sharing (Socialization) Spikes. Upticks in content sharing might mean something is going viral. So if the video of the day is being shared 2x more often, it may be time to give it a profile boost- either paid or organic. Giving something that is almost viral a little extra attention at the right time can help dial up its performance.

How to get started

Setting up alerts usually is pretty easy and something any resort marketer could tackle. If you’re like most of our mountain clients and are using Google Analytics (and have the appropriate tracking setup), here’s what to do:

  • Navigate to the “Admin” settings (gear icon in the lower left) of your Google Analytics account.
    Admin Settings
  • Go to the “View” of the analytics you want to set alerts for.
  • Scroll down under “Personal Tools & Assets” and select “Custom Alerts”
    Custom Alert
  • Select “New Alert”. Here you will see how to receive alerts, including “Setup Your Mobile Phone.” You can take it from there.
    Text Alerts

Ski marketers, if you’re interested in other ways to get the most from marketing, contact us anytime.