According to Pew Research Center, millennials comprise 35% of the US workforce, as well as being the largest generation of consumers. This means that they have the means to pay for what they want. Young people aged 17-34 today will spend more than $200 billion annually starting in 2017, and $10 trillion in their lifetimes. At the same time, technology has flooded their lives with information that’s readily available but often impersonal or inaccurate. Success is often driven by popularity over talent and confidence over conscientiousness.
This has created something of a paradox in that the desire for authenticity and personal connection grows as technology continues to make life more impersonal and contrived. According to Forbes, only 1% of millennials are swayed by advertising when making purchases, while 43% respect authenticity over marketing. Millennials may be able to afford to pay for what they want, but what they want is quality over quantity. They want the convenience that technology provides without the stress that comes from having too much information and too little time to process it. Of the roughly 73 million millennials in the US, 63% prefer companies that interact with them on social media and 60% are loyal to tried-and-true brands that have managed to gain their hard-won respect. Research shows that this shift will likely continue into the younger Gen Z generation, which will be more likely to invest in people over companies, showing its loyalty through interpersonal connections.
This is good news for companies like SnowPak. The snow sports industry has seen decreasing amounts of activity as millennials and younger generations have failed to fill the gaps left by the older Gen Xers. If anyone can revitalize the snow industry, it’s SnowPak. The company’s website engage 1.5 million skiing and snowboarding enthusiasts worldwide. While most of their interest comes from US-based fans seeking snow-powdered adventures in their home country, other destinations of interest include the best slopes in Canada, Europe, and Japan.
Planning these kinds of trips can be tedious, unless you feel like doing all the work yourself. Otherwise, you’re stuck searching for locations, accommodations, and snow conditions on separate websites, which can often be misleading or downright contradictory. SnowPak eliminates this problem by compiling the necessary information all in one place. They do this by a review-based system that utilizes the real-life experiences of visitors who’ve actually used the slopes they’re raving about. These people know the sport as well as the slopes. In addition to snow conditions, they can also provide information about the best places to stay, eat, and party in the local vicinity. This input adds up to a comprehensive guide, supported by other users, for each location listed on SnowPak’s website.
“We want to present a clear snapshot of the resort as told by local mountain experts who know the resort back to front and user reviews written from personal experience. We want to be the place people come to get the “need to know” facts so they can make informed decisions – both the good and the bad,” said David Shi, Communications Director for SnowPak.
This method of compiling the information eliminates the money-driven content that’s sponsored on many sites. Instead of getting an idealized description that’s been carefully crafted by the ski resort, travelers get insider information from snow sports enthusiasts, like themselves, whose only incentive is to provide an honest assessment of their skiing or snowboarding experience. This isn’t just good news for SnowPak; this is good news for anyone who wishes that technology was as personal as it was accessible. By creating a point at which users’ needs and desires intersect, SnowPak has created an experience that has real people providing hyperlocal real information in real time. All this adds up to a real adventure that appeals to the millennial in all of us.
“I was just a ski bum chasing the winter when SnowPak reached out and asked if I was interested in sharing my experiences at ski resorts,” said Jack Lee, Content Manager at SnowPak. “I immediately leapt at the opportunity because of my deep knowledge of ski resorts, and I know there is a lot of rubbish that’s out there. I want to make snow sports more accessible.”
As older generations are phased out, the oft-maligned millennials and younger Gen Zers will come to dominate the global marketplace even more than they do now. By finding ways to appeal to these generations, companies can gain valuable insights into how to adapt technological advances to their unique way of living and thinking. Instead of using technology as an impersonal tool to conduct business in a way that reduces the need for people, human interactions, and interpersonal connections, technology can be humanized to provide the same amount of convenience it does now, with the added benefit of personalized service. By tapping into this craving for more genuineness and transparency, SnowPak has created a convenient marketplace for snow sports that millennials can literally get on board with.