Friends trekking in the mountains and laughing
Many brands, athletes, and media groups are working these days to democratize the outdoor industry (Photo: Getty)
Outside Business Journal
Sponsor Content: Finn Partners

Getting Outdoors Is Good for the Soul—and Business

How brands, athletes, and media are working to democratize the outdoor industry

Friends trekking in the mountains and laughing

Number crunching and industry analysis of the pandemic-driven ‘get outside’ effect will probably continue for years to come, but it doesn’t take a data scientist to observe firsthand the immediate impact that getting outdoors, together, is having on people. As brands try new things in an effort to get more people into their definition of the “wild”—whether in the heart of Manhattan or the backcountry—and PR vets happily reunite with clients and media face to face, it’s clear that a passion for being active is best ignited when we’re getting outdoors together.

Our consumer lifestyle and sports team here at Finn Partners saw it firsthand as we worked with Darn Tough brand ambassador Mirna Valerio to bring media and fans together for a run across the Brooklyn Bridge—putting Darn Tough’s merino-wool, lifetime-guaranteed running socks to the test—live in person. It’s been a while since we’ve seen New Yorkers that amped to run in a pack. The sense of community and belonging was palpable as Valerio led the charge over the East River.

In-person events like this are also proving you don’t have to summit Everest, or undertake similarly extreme challenges, to be considered outdoorsy. Plenty of people embrace the outdoor lifestyle in their own ways—from Midwesterners meeting the challenge of mid-snowstorm dog walks to coastal city-dwellers who log their hiking miles in local parks. We’re excited to see our own clients and other brands across the industry not only embrace these “new” outdoor consumers, but actively work to create welcoming opportunities for them to participate.

But enough from us. Let’s hear it straight from them.

Chris Harges, Marmot’s Director of Brand

“Gone are the days of marketing your outdoor products for only the world’s highest peaks. We are speaking to consumers who enjoy the outdoors at a variety of skill and interest levels. We aren’t talking to an exclusive club, but rather many different communities. And we’re encouraging others to join us in democratizing the outdoor industry.”

Todd King, Tentrr’s VP of Marketing and Communications

“Our newly announced partnership with Black Folks Camp Too is just one way we are working to get more people experiencing and loving the outdoors. With the Unity Blaze symbol incorporated in all of our 1,000-plus ready-to-go campsites across the U.S., we’re proudly promoting inclusivity in the outdoors and beyond. All are welcome. We are inviting everyone to have a comfortable and fun outdoor experience.”

Missy Farren, Managing Partner of FINN’s Consumer Lifestyle and Sports Practice 

“Even our adventure tourism and destination clients are seeing the positive impact of people uniting in the outdoors. Offering opportunities to experience an active adventure as a part of a group not only draws new consumers in, but also creates a great vibe when people feel they are a part of a new tribe. We know time outside heals, invigorates, and unites, and we’re seeing that play out across our outdoor, wellness, tourism, and sports clients.” 

Founded in 2011 on the core principles of innovation and collaborative partnership, Finn Partners has become one of the fastest growing independent public relations agencies in the world. With more than 1,300 professionals across 33 offices, Finn provides clients with global access and capabilities in the Americas, Europe, and Asia. Finn Partners clients are also supported through longstanding partner agencies and its membership in the PROI network of leading agencies around the world.

Headquartered in New York, Finn has offices in Atlanta, Bangalore, Beijing, Boston, Chicago, Delhi, Denver, Detroit, Dublin, Fort Lauderdale, Frankfurt, Guam, Hong Kong, Honolulu, Jerusalem, Kuala Lumpur, London, Los Angeles, Manila, Mumbai, Munich, Nashville, Orange County, Paris, Portland, San Diego, San Francisco, Seattle, Shanghai, Singapore, Vancouver, and Washington D.C.

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Lead Photo: Getty