There is much in common between the microbrewery and the adventure tour operator: discerning consumers, innovative products, and businesses competing against large-scale companies. Despite being in different industries, both are in the same situation: They are micro businesses working against looming macro businesses that have hard-to-beat economies of scale. However, micros are nimble and macros are not.
It is through the power of community and cross-industry partnerships that the adventure travel industry — a collective of small- to medium-sized brands — can reach an audience of like-minded consumers. Brands that connect with the essence of adventure — with its fearlessness, with its curiosity, with its need to push boundaries — will find a home and a place within the blurred borders of our community.
At last year’s Outdoor Retailer show, the Adventure Travel Trade Association (ATTA) met with Uinta Brewing, planting the seeds for a partnership that publicly launched this month. Starting 1 February 2018, Uinta Brewing celebrates its 25th anniversary with adventure with a two-month campaign to celebrate its award-winning craft beers. This consumer sweepstakes campaign launched with an extraordinary number of adventure-filled prizes from several ATTA member partners, including a trip giveaway from Intrepid Travel.
ATTA members joining in on the celebration include Hydro Flask, Outside Magazine, Toad&Co Clothing, World Nomads, Backcountry, and Eagle Creek, and now fans of Uinta beers nationwide can enter to win a host of adventure experiences and products. The grand prize is truly top notch and includes an assortment of clothing, gear, and various hydration vessels (beer and wine appropriate) as well as a trip, airfare credit, travel bags, and travel insurance.
The ATTA has been expanding the audience and capabilities of Adventure.Travel over the past few years and worked on several collaborative campaigns highlighting adventure travel destinations and tour operators offering adventures around the globe.
Other partnerships being offered to brands outside the direct adventure travel community include connecting those brands to strategic initiatives that can make a difference and have a direct impact on local communities, the economic landscape, natural environments, and more. The ATTA’s next consumer campaign will be centered around eliminating plastic water bottles. Partners for this campaign must rally around this effort to showcase a commitment to change.
In addition, partners can support research that deepens our understanding of consumer behaviors and motives, connecting the chain of touch points and decisions that influence consumers’ travel decisions and, ultimately, their perspective about our earth.
While tourism has been often recognized as a force for good related to jobs and financial resources it can deliver, the real story for 2018 is the adventure industry’s awakening to the reality of its deeper, and perhaps greatest, potential: Adventure travel experiences offer the rare opportunity to communicate on an emotional level with hundreds of millions of travelers about the urgency of conservation for our planet.
It may start with a microbrew, but in the end, it is about much, much more.
Organizations interested in pursuing partnership opportunities with the ATTA can get in touch.