Snowbird Ski Resort names new Operations VP
Year-round destination Snowbird Ski and Summer Resort has promoted a company veteran to the role of vice president of resort operations, a position that will help focus the business’s customer service efforts, according to FirstTracksOnline
Dave Fields’s new position is also intended to provide greater oversight over the Snowbird, Utah-based destination’s day-to-day operations.
“In Dave’s 11 years at Snowbird, he’s shown tremendous leadership and an ability to work seamlessly with all of our various departments, our employees and our community,” President Bob Bonar said in a company release. “Snowbird is known for its terrain, snow and tram. We are committed to adding outstanding customer service to that list and Dave is going to help us achieve that goal.”
Fields has served in multiple facets at Snowbird over the years including assistant director of public relations and director of marketing, tickets and entertainment and special events, departments that he will continue overseeing in his new function.
Snowbird, a year-round ski and summer resort located 29 miles from Salt Lake International Airport, offers 882 rooms between four lodging properties in addition to a spa and dining options.
Snowbird is currently preparing for its winter season, which is scheduled to start Nov. 20th.
In an interview with DailyVista, Fields said that while he will continue managing Snowbird
’s marketing and ticketing departments, his new capacity includes spending more time on the mountain interacting with guests and resolving problems to provide customers with the best experience possible.
“My first short-term goal is get the word out as soon as it starts snowing,” he stated “We got off to a slow start last season in terms of snow, so it's important that when the early snow comes we spread that word. Other short-term goals include working with our STAR (Service That's Absolutely Remarkable) team to create systems within each department to provide excellent customer service.”
Snowbird has used an integrated marketing approach to appeal to guests including the first innovative ski resort iPhone application, created by Salt Lake City, Utah-based agency Welikesmall, with a second version on the way, and a Snowbird Ski Patrol focused Twitter account.
“We want to expand that this year,” Fields added. “We're launching a new commerce side of snowbird.com, and then we'll begin working on the content side of the site.”
The resort is also committed to more traditional vertical publications because it feels that the industry is better served by having vibrant and thriving ski and snowboard publications.
“We host ski equipment tests for Ski, Skiing, Outside and Mountain Sports and Living magazines, which works well for everyone,” our source continued. “We have the terrain, snow and facilities that are perfect for testing myriad equipment; it's easy for the editors and testers to get into SLC airport and to the resort; then we get nice editorial coverage in the magazines.”
The resort also partners with other endemic Web sites and organizations like Ski Utah and Ski Salt Lake to reach larger audiences through co-op marketing programs that are augmented by Utah Office of Tourism and the state legislature.
Through these initiatives, Snowbird aims to reach both its strong local followers and out-of-state destination visitors, who both love three things: the terrain, the snow and access.
“Our guests are often fanatical about their powder skiing and riding,” Fields stated. “They know the type of storm system that produces big snow in Little Cottonwood Canyon, and they'll get on a plane, call in sick or do whatever they have to do to be on that first tram the morning after a 20- or 30-inch storm. The energy and excitement around here on a snow day is addictive.”
The resort’s efforts also revolve around appealing to people who have never tried Snowbird before, touting that its terrain offers challenges for skiers of all skill levels, and marketing its summer activities, which our source said many people don’t know about.
"Over and over again I'll meet people in the Salt Lake Valley who have no idea that we have eight summer activities including an alpine slide, ziprider, ropes course and climbing wall…” Fields continued. “We spend a lot of time and energy promoting our summer activities. Corporate meetings, small meetings and weddings are also a big part of our business. The corporate meeting business is slowly coming back and in the meantime we're hosting great events for the smaller groups.”
In addition to Welikesmall, our source added that SnowBird also outsources its Web programming to Salt Lake City-based Inetz.
“We also use some individuals who we trust to help us brainstorm ideas and come up with creative ways to tell the Snowbird story,” Fields stated. “We currently partner with Pepsi, The North Face, Young Chevrolet, Dynastar and Lange. We also work closely with American Express and some other local organizations.”
Snowbird Ski and Summer Resort
Little Cottonwood Canyon
Snowbird, UT 84092
Vice President, Resort Operations