Chris Hansen skiing some Teton powderThe best kind of marketing is the kind that you don’t have to do for a product your customers want and believe they can’t live without. There are a handful of products and services that fall into this category. Many are illicit and illegal. Often times they are addictive—be they physically or psychologically. But there are a few things that, while (psychologically) addictive, aren’t necessarily bad for you. In some cases they are even good for you.

In this case I’m talking about skiing. Now, I refer to this activity generically as “skiing” because that’s what I grew up doing. But “skiing” for me often means any form of disciplined snow sliding. Sledding, inner tubing and the like don’t count ’cause any idiot can do that. I’m talking about snowboarding and alpine and telemark skiing. Preferably involving gravity, but I’ll occassionally include skiing of the Nordic variety because, while arguably not as fun, those are definitely “disciplines.”

I haven’t talked about skiing in this blog yet because it just hasn’t been a topic within season. But as those of you who either know me or have taken time to read this blog know, I am based in Jackson Hole. And for anyone who knows anything about skiing, you know that Jackson Hole is a skier’s Mecca.

Coming off of the Christmas holiday, where I was lucky enough to have a week off from work and we were all blessed with back-to-back storm cycles, I’m now scrambling to catch up with my blogging. I have no excuse for the down-time other than: visiting family, too much holiday partying, a fair amount of yet still not enough skiing, some quality family time, and a little laziness thrown in for good measure.

Much of the skiing I do is in the backcountry and often I do it alone, which provides time to ponder topics for this blog and other writing I do. So consider this post an entré to some topics I hope to get to and stories I will share in the coming year (no, this is not a New Year’s resolution post!) regarding green marketing within the snow sports and outdoor industries. Some of those will include:

• The kind of marketing for products and services which I alluded to at the beginning of this post and may not really be marketing at all. I’ll call it “unmarketing” for now. It often includes guerilla marketing and pure, unadulterated word-of-mouth marketing.

• The close relative of but definitely not unmarketing: social networking sites. Snow sports and outdoor sports are very social by their nature and some companies, marketers and PR pros are taking great advantage of social networking sites.

• Blatant green marketing that might just be greenwashing at its core. Ski areas are notorious for this.

To lead it off I’ve got a great story about a local ski company that doesn’t want to be in business as bad as they want to have something to support their skiing habit. But you’ll have to wait for that one.