Sugar Bowl Resort
The End of An Identity Crisis
Sugar Bowl is a medium sized alpine ski resort in the Lake Tahoe region, and is well known for its long history, significant advanced terrain, high annual snowfall and for being one of the closest ski areas to the San Francisco Bay Area. Opened in 1939, Sugar Bowl was the first ski resort in California to install a chairlift and the first on the west coast to install a gondola lift.
The 72-year-old brand was experiencing an identity crisis, and it showed. Sugar Bowl struggled to find its voice, and was lacking a consistent message. Marketing communications were devoid of emotion, and dwelled on the negative aspects of skiing and snowboarding. The resort was trying to be everything to everybody, attempting to compete with the bigger, flashier resorts in the area instead of focusing on who they really are and what people love about them.
Saint Pierre Creative took an honest look at the resort’s core values and key differentiators, and incorp
orated them into the brand repositioning. We researched and clearly identified the customers with the highest potential and crafted a consistent, emotion-centered brand message to capture their attention. The Brands Standard Guide developed for the resort ensures a creative, coherent look and feel, as does the new photography developed specifically for Sugar Bowl.
The strategic, new brand ecosystem, targeted to Sacramento and Bay Area skiers and riders, increased year-to-date paid skier visits by 23%, increased season pass visits by 38%, and boosted total revenues by nearly 21%. The effort was awarded ADDYs in the categories of Integrated Branding and Newspaper Campaign.