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114: Jim Niehues, The Man Behind the Maps + Todd Bennett and Ben Farrow of Open Road Ski Company

Channel Mastery

Release Date: 12/12/2019

Kristin Carpenter, Consumer Psychology Through the  Coronavirus Crisis and Beyond show art Kristin Carpenter, Consumer Psychology Through the Coronavirus Crisis and Beyond

Channel Mastery

NOTE: This episode originally aired as a on Thursday, April 2nd, 2020.    We study consumer behavior a lot in this community. It’s without a doubt one of the absolute core areas of focus for any Channel Master.    Because of that, I’ve been asked repeatedly what my take is on how the pandemic will affect consumer behavior. In this episode, I’m laying the groundwork for our forthcoming work around this, Channel Masters. Yes, today we take our first swing at how a ‘typical’ consumer recession mindset could look like when paired with a global pandemic.   ...

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Steve Kennedy, Gearheads Outdoor Store show art Steve Kennedy, Gearheads Outdoor Store

Channel Mastery

Please note - this episode was recorded in early March 2020. Since the recording of this episode, the store has released the following information: they have shifted their water services to outside only and the station is sanitized in between each use. Their inventory is available online for shipping or pickup at store and customers are no longer admitted inside the store. Staff is located at the door for pick up and shopping needs. Credit cards and cash is being sanitized and disinfectant wipes are provided at the door.  If you’ve been to Moab, Utah and haven’t stopped at GearHeads...

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Kristin Carpenter, Taking Steps Forward in this Paradigm Shift show art Kristin Carpenter, Taking Steps Forward in this Paradigm Shift

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This episode of the Channel Mastery podcast offes another installment of the series for effectively communicating as a specialty business during the Coronavirus crisis. It was recorded live on Facebook Live on Monday, March 23, 2020 and is available on that platform as well.    The message of this broadcast focuses on taking steps forward and the paradigm shift that is happening right now as we continue to learn how to navigate through these difficult times. Two weeks ago, we were seeing people in preparation mode, and while we still may be in that to some extent, we’re seeing a...

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Kristin Carpenter, host of the Channel Mastery podcast and CEO/Founder of Verde Brand Communications, is offering a second episode with current best practices (as in for today, 3-17-20), for specialty brands communicating in the throes of the novel coronavirus. We continue to get new information daily and a lot has changed since we were last together, just six days ago, when we released the first of the Channel Mastery episodes focused around COVID-19.   In this episode you’ll get comfortable with communicating more to your audiences: your primary audience of your employees, your...

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124: *Special Episode* Crisis Communication  For Your Business During The COVID-19 Outbreak show art 124: *Special Episode* Crisis Communication For Your Business During The COVID-19 Outbreak

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In this episode of the Channel Mastery podcast, I’m sharing a brand-new framework that the Verde Brand Communications team and I created for our roster of specialty brands to support crisis communications for the COVID-19 virus crisis.    We wanted to share this with you, Channel Masters, because we strongly share a collective opinion that specialty brands must take a communications strategy that’s, well, specialized. And in this podcast, I explain what that means and why it’s important, and offer our solution to you in a five-part framework created just for specialty brands....

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123: Aimee Ross, Director of Bike Bentonville show art 123: Aimee Ross, Director of Bike Bentonville

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It wasn’t long ago that the only thing we knew about Bentonville was that it was home to Walmart’s headquarters. Now in 2020, this small Arkansas town has made a name for itself in the cycling community and is continuing to grow by the day - literally. The town welcomes an average of 34 people moving to the area every day!   Aimee Ross, Director of Bike Bentonville, is my guest on this episode and shares how collaboration is key. By structuring Bike Bentonville under the city’s tourism bureau, Visit Bentonville, the community has done something truly unique. Ross discusses how she...

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123: Aimee Ross, Director of Bike Bentonville show art 123: Aimee Ross, Director of Bike Bentonville

Channel Mastery

It wasn’t long ago that the only thing we knew about Bentonville was that it was home to Walmart’s headquarters. Now in 2020, this small Arkansas town has made a name for itself in the cycling community and is continuing to grow by the day - literally. The town welcomes an average of 34 people moving to the area every day!   Aimee Ross, Director of Bike Bentonville, is my guest on this episode and shares how collaboration is key. By structuring Bike Bentonville under the city’s tourism bureau, Visit Bentonville, the community has done something truly unique. Ross discusses how she...

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122: Tyler Benedict, Bike Rumor show art 122: Tyler Benedict, Bike Rumor

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Tyler Benedict, founder and publisher of Bikerumor.com, is my guest this week on Channel Mastery. Eleven-plus years ago, Tyler started Bikerumor.com and during that time, he's seen a lot of evolution in terms of how consumers use and share his content, and how his site factors into the consumer decision journey.     In this episode, Tyler gives his well informed take on what's working, and what's not, with endemic content today. You'll learn how his team approaches and optimizes content across multiple channels, including the Bikerumor.com website, blog, Youtube...

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121:  Jerod Foster, Associate Professor of Practice in the  Journalism and Creative Media Industries Department, Texas Tech University show art 121: Jerod Foster, Associate Professor of Practice in the Journalism and Creative Media Industries Department, Texas Tech University

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This episode of Channel Mastery is quite different than our usual episodes, but I was so impressed with the program my guest leads for Texas Tech University that I wanted to share it with all of you. Jerod Foster is an Associate Professor of Practice in the Department of Journalism and Creative Media Industries at Texas Tech University. He’s also an editorial commercial photographer focusing on outdoor and conservation.   Foster, along with a team of Professor’s of Practice, lead an adventure media course and program at Texas Tech University designed to take the students out of the...

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120: Kristin Carpenter, CEO of Verde Brand Communications and Channel Mastery Host  show art 120: Kristin Carpenter, CEO of Verde Brand Communications and Channel Mastery Host

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It’s solocast time, Channel Masters! In this show, we’re going to deep dive on three things you need to know for 2020 when it comes to successfully serving today’s connected shopper.    An entirely new decade is here and in just the first month of that decade, Amazon, Starbucks,  Anthropologie, Target and Nordstroms have all announced new retail and brand experience concepts. Keep in mind, Channel Mastery does not advocate that you stop what you’re doing and shift tactics to respond to what the majors and marketplaces are doing. However, we must study what they are doing...

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More Episodes

Algorithms have their place, but for specialty/artisan brands, emotive storytelling and a human over algorithm approach will continue to win the day. My guests today in this episode personify this. You’re about to meet the artist and team behind Open Road Ski Company and Man Behind the Maps. Note: This episode is co-produced by our friends at Snowsports Industries of America (SIA).

James Niehues is The Man Behind the Maps. He’s literally defined on-snow resorts through his illustrated maps and is the point of terrain reference for countless skiers and riders. I challenge you to find a single skier or rider who isn’t familiar with his artwork. 

When Todd Bennett and Ben Farrow, co-founders of the Open Road Ski Company, realized that there wasn’t an anthology printed of James’ incredible artwork, they set about creating a vision and opportunity for Niehues. In this podcast, you’ll hear first-hand how the book “Man Behind the Maps” came to be. 

The story of Niehaus and his collection of on-snow resort maps is nothing short of incredible, and you will get to hear it first hand from James, as well as Todd and Ben, in this episode.

Niehaus is a very humble man, and Bennett and Farrow worked hard to bring a genuine, absolutely top-tier book to market featuring the genius of Niehaus. In this show, James shares his process behind his artwork. He discusses his trips around the world and how he got connected with Todd and Ben to bring his ski maps into one collection.

Long-time fans of Jim’s, Todd and Ben approached him with little publishing knowledge but with a passion to turn Jim’s life work into a timeless, museum quality piece of art in the form of a beautifully curated coffee table book. By launching a Kickstarter campaign, the enthusiasm from the skiing community turned what Ben and Todd thought may be a flop of a launch into the #1 Funded Art Illustration Project in Kickstarter history. 

It has been through their storytelling and their shared passion for skiing that Man Behind the Maps is in the marketplace now and soon to be in all homes where skiing is enjoyed. 

Jim Niehues is the artist known as The Man Behind the Maps. Over the past 30 years, Jim has been painting ski maps for over 200 resorts around the world.

Todd Bennett and Ben Farrow co-founded Open Road Ski Company after realizing the ski resort maps they knew and loved were created by the same artist. In 2017, they reached out to Jim and started the process of bringing the book, Man Behind the Maps, to life.