In December 2010, OnTheSnow.com, the most visited snow sports site on the web and a subsidiary of Vail Resorts, approached Linhart PR to assist in promoting a suite of new apps for iPhone, iPad, Android and Google Chrome. In particular, OnTheSnow’s team wanted to increase downloads for the Gear Guide app, which allowed users to browse and compare ski and snowboard equipment. Although OnTheSnow had released the app earlier in the fall, downloads had lagged behind expectations. It was the team’s first assignment, and with little time and a limited budget, Linhart PR stepped in to step up the campaign.
The team identified snow sports bloggers and app website administrators who might have missed the initial release as eager candidates to write about the app. Linhart PR’s outreach focused on these new outlets, as well as traditional media publications in major markets around the country. About.com took notice and included the Gear Guide. So did several app review sites.
Linhart PR’s outreach indicated that a new angle might improve results: the ski industry was going high tech. Apps of all kinds were appearing on the slopes. The team positioned the Gear Guide app as part of that trend, an update to the old standby of printed gear reviews and guides. That idea drew interest from business reporters at Fast Company, the Vail Daily and a personal health reporter at The Denver Post, which included the Gear Guide in a story about high-tech fitness. While that outreach continued, Linhart PR made the most of a limited budget by running a release for OnTheSnow’s Chrome OS Snow Report app, through PitchEngine.com, generating four more stories at no out-of-pocket cost.
In total, the team’s efforts fueled the story at the key holiday buying season, secured 13 stories in print and online, for a total of 2,461,507 impressions and developed relationships with influencer industry reporters and bloggers including Fast Company reporter Chris Dannen and national skiing examiner, Eric Wagnon.