Archive for April, 2011

That’s Gonna Leave a Mark

Streakin’ big air…ouch!

Lessons to be Learned

Skiing the big mountains brings big risks, particularly as documented by this video, watch, learn and hopefully don’t repeat:

Exciting New Analytics Options

This is limited pilot of new reporting that hopefully will be introduced in Google Analytics, but as a online marketing “geek”, the attribution options presented via this multi-channel funnel reporting are something that I’ve been waiting a long time for, check it out:

And then read a much better breakdown than I could do on this post at Search Engine Land.

The Future of Online Travel Sales?

I recently happened up on this clip showing how 3 (no English version of their site unfortunately), a Swedish telecommunications company has taken their online sales and ecommerce application to a new level of personalization with a unique and very nifty touch.

I think this could be an amazingly powerful way to bring a personal vacation planner touch to travel sites that seem to have rubbed out that component in their race to have the most efficient and full featured search set in their sites. What do you think, is this the future of online travel sales?

More Tilting

I enjoy checking out the variety of approaches that resorts are taking with video and it seems that the in-vogue technique for the moment is tilt shift. Whistler Blackcomb posted a tilt shift video earlier this season and now Jackson Hole follows:

Be sure to follow the advice to wait for the entire clip to load in HD and then watch in full screen mode.

I really like both clips, but I definitely am feeling that the good old pinhole camera effect that tilt-shift emulates is getting close to it’s 15 minutes. Hat tip to @travel2dot0 for pointing this out to me (I know I’d seen it in on my Facebook wall, but completely missed clicking the link then).

Jet Fuel Price Analysis

Will High Airfares Impact the 2011-2012 Ski Season?

Winter destination travel is not the high demand airline ticket that summer airline tickets are, but a recent article in Frommer’s entitled, “Are High-Cost Airline Tickets the New Normal“, leads me to wonder whether record airfares for summer 2011 will carry over into winter 2011-2012? I don’t have a crystal ball, or even the tiniest bit of forecasting ability, but I can connect the dots from summer to winter and I think that most of the base reasons cited for higher summer airfares:

  • Consolidation
  • Bankruptcies
  • Airlines cutting capacities
  • The lack of new low-cost carriers
  • And the elephant not discussed in the article, but the volatility of the prices of jet fuel

For ski resorts, I’m not sold on the fact that cost of gasoline is going to have much impact of business levels, because we Americans are so hooked on our automobiles. However, I am not as sure that the cost impact of jet fuel on airlines ticket prices…see the chart below for the IATA – Platts jet fuel analysis week of March 30, and no I don’t understand most of the number, it’s pretty easy to see some dramatic numbers in the last two columns:

Jet Fuel Price Analysis

Whether or not this dramatic surge in jet fuel continues into next winter season, my personal guess is that the other factors in the mix will keep airfares high, and ski resorts will need to plan accordingly because if prices rise too high they could certainly impact destination visits and that is something that no one wants to see. What do you think?

Graphic credit: IATA – Platts

QR code fail

QR Code April Fool’s

I am not a big QR (quick response) code fan and while I can see some uses and have even seen some very clever applications of them, more often than not, I’ve wound up being completely flummoxed by why they show up in ads. This past winter season, I’ve seen ski resorts use QR codes to link to their Facebook page, to link to their YouTube video page and to link to their website, but to me this is an April Fool’s because of all the QR codes I scanned in the various ski and snowboarding publications only a few took me to a mobilized web page – which of course begs the question, how do they (the people who put the codes in), think people would be scanning the QR codes – on their laptops, or using their webcams? When you think about it, it’s pretty simple, but for some reason I feel like it’s “April Fool’s” every time I scan a code, because it takes me somewhere that I just don’t want to be on my cell phone. The classic example (not a ski resort ad) was one I found in a local paper at lunch and snapped a photo of because I just had to share:

 

QR code fail

There are actually two things that I find problematic with this, the first is that it requires the proprietary Tag Reader from Microsoft, I already have another standard 2d bar code reader on my phone, why force me to download another? Second, the QR code simply directs me to the URL of the companies website that is spelled out to the left. I really hate this in that I could have typed that URL into my phone’s browser in less time than it took me to download the tag reader app, get it to focus on the tag and then have it open my browser – and the kicker is that the site isn’t even a mobile version, it’s the companies’ regular desktop formated website – which when you add it all up is a huge and massive #FAIL and a very unpleasant April Fools!

 

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