The Peaky Grinders

August is upon us, and the height of summer can mean only one thing for the team at Trampoline: ski season. Our crew keeps cool in the hot months by staying waist-deep in powder photos. We’re working through new concepts for Crotched Mountain, celebrating the incredible project underway at Hunter North, and sinking our teeth into restaurant branding for the new Carinthia Base Lodge at Mount Snow.

Peak Resorts has presented incredible, creative opportunities to build placemaking campaigns. Seven unique properties spread throughout the Poconos of Pennsylvania, the Catskills of New York, the Green Mountains of Vermont and the Presidential Range in New Hampshire, each with their own dedicated pass-holders and visitors.

Over the past three seasons, we’ve worked to create systems and messaging that positions each of these properties as a worthwhile destination, and beyond that—a guaranteed good time.

Peak has been ahead of the curve with their family of mountains, launching the Peak Pass that offers cross-mountain access to their northeast properties, as other privately held resorts have had to band together with competitors on offers like the Max Pass or IKON.

The Peak Pass continues to be a hot ticket on the east coast. Sales in advance of the 17/18 season doubled at the Boston Ski Show in November, and at the close of their 145 operating days, Peak announced a 47% increase in their student Drifter Pass unit sales. College kids are hopping lifts left and right.

Peak continues to invest in bricks-and-mortar improvements and marketing to share their new experiences. We’ve retired the Best-in-Show ADDY Award Winning advertising for Hunter Mountain and will launch a new Direction for the resort this fall. We’re working closely with the design team at Mount Snow to offer an evolution of their We 🖤Snow™ campaign. Crotched will reveal an Outta This World digital campaign in the coming months and the Get At It™ message for Attitash Mountain is working hard to entice skiers into the White Mountains.In a July press release, Peak Resorts reported a 9% growth in revenue during the 4th quarter, with an E.B.I.T.A. increase of 4%. Shareholders are squarely in dividend territory, and skiers and riders are loving the improvements, and unique recreation experiences available at each property.

Peak Resorts employs a team of marketing pros who are largely responsible for their marketshare in the east. Our agency has worked to provide the different mountain marketers with the tools and brand structure to create repeat impressions that showcase the best of each place. From there, Jack, Liz, Katie, Thad, Megan, Doug, and Greg go to work—shaking stories and press out of the trees like so many glade skiers.

We’re lucky to work with outdoor adventurers who love design as much as finding their line.

Cheers to Peak on the upward momentum—literally in the case of Hunter (new chairlift)—and we’re de-misting our goggles as we look toward another incredible season.

Changemakers

In the Spring of 2017, there were 11 Tramps creating in our studio. Over the course of the next three quarters, we added 5 more positions—accounts, production, design and social teams all benefitted from additional personnel.

Change can be hard.

Staff configuration, client needs, business plans…we’ve always been nimble with an ability to stretch and flex as needed. The last twelve months—and the 14 years previous—prove that we should not fear change but we should embrace it.

Without change we would never have assembled this amazing staff.

Change continues.

We’ve made space for even more positions in 2018. A videographer, a proofreader, and more designers, creating award-winning work in Glens Falls.

Change adds up.

A 2016 study found that the daily ritual of staff buying coffee and lunch can total $3,000.ºº annually. This summer, 19 hungry Tramps will hit the sidewalks of downtown, for a latte, a rice bowl or the Chef’s Whim. That’s a $57,000 change to our local economy in meals alone.

Change creates space.

Revising our structure has created room for new opportunities, relationships and revenue.

A change in approach.

Our growth led to the creation of necessary processes to guide our business.

Do you see a pattern?

Don’t fear change. Move with it, accept it. There are good things ahead.

 

Surviving Instagram in 2018

Instagram has over 800+ million engaged monthly users. The photo-sharing platform is on track to hit a billion users this year, and currently boasts an estimated $100 billion market value. And while it falls behind its parent company, Facebook, in size and value, it outpaces Facebook’s engagement rates by over 15%.

While using Instagram may seem as simple as posting an image and calling it a day, the Instagram algorithm plays an important role in determining what each person sees when they open their phone. These parameters are an ever-changing puzzle, but if you understand how to leverage the rules you can take your Instagram—and your business—to the next level.

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Happy Trampsgiving

We enjoyed a bit of time off for the Thanksgiving holiday. As a matter of fact, on Wednesday we all walked out to our cars together. We swapped stories, shared plans, and maybe talked about the quirky relative we were looking forward to seeing (misbehave). Traditions, though they vary, offer a common thread. It’s often that connection we seek to unearth in the design process—creating unity through an unexpected, familiar, or striking element in communication.

Design can bring a community together, forward a mission and do good. Streamlined communication helps organizations to cut through some of the commercial clutter to deliver messaging that hits the mark.

Below are 10 non-profits that Trampoline has contributed to in 2017. As a group we’ve proudly donated design, funds and volunteer hours to assist as needed. Our reward has been seeing the impact of the effort. Whether the result is improved awareness, or an uptick in gifts—we’re on a mission (pun!) to have an impact on our region.

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Join the Team-UPDATED (a second time!)

Summer is winding down and things are revving up here at Trampoline, which is why we are here sharing this throwback commercial from Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups. It’s time for us to find that perfect mix as we grow our team. This clip will demonstrate that we aren’t afraid of a little bit of low-res cheese. It’s also foreshadowing that we are looking to do more than staff an open position, it’s to connect people and ideas in a way that strengthens our team and gives you an opportunity to sweeten your skills.

 

 

Ideally, you will be open to learning new things, being flexible to adapt to changes in workflow or assignments, and also a fan of this area.

Things we aren’t: a massive agency, a huge town, users of words like maven, thought leader, or ____-preneur.

Things we are: Passionate about design, solving communication riddles, flaky pastries, craft beers, and kombucha. Ok, so that last one may only be Megan and Amanda.

Graphic Designer

We don’t take adding designers to our team lightly, but the time has come. We are looking for someone with 3+ years working as a designer. We value opinions and confidence, particularly when they are paired with an appreciation for design, typography, process, and clear communication. The process at Trampoline involves collaboration between the different members of the team—one of the reasons why we do require that this position be on-site.

Designers (we currently have 8) work with clients as well as production vendors. The work in the shop ranges from branding projects and ad campaigns, to print magazines and annual reports, with a bit of social media and digital advertising thrown in for good measure.

Fine print: Must have a mastery of Adobe Creative Suite, Word, ability to do battle with Publisher through clenched teeth and a smile. Some familiarity with HTML, video, and photography would be swell.

This position will report to an Art Director and assist in mentoring junior designers.

Please respond with work samples, availability, and references.

 

Junior Graphic Designer

We don’t expect you to be an expert, but we do expect you to be proficient in the Adobe Creative Suite. You can anticipate acting as a support for our current design staff. This could involve re-sizes and re-prints, assisting with proofing and research. If you have video/animation skills, or an interest in learning, all the better. We love a well-rounded, knowledge-hungry designer. As a member of the team, you will participate in creative concepting sessions and the crit process. There will be times when you go on-site for client meetings and events. Our clients range from higher-ed and health care to ski resorts and non-profit organizations.

You’ll have a senior team member who will serve as a mentor. We understand that there will be times when you have questions or need guidance; there isn’t a day at Trampoline when someone doesn’t learn something from a co-worker. Our goal is to have you grow into a larger role, but to do it at a managed pace. There are opportunities to allow everyone a chance to spread their creative wings.

We hope that you will be someone who wants to be here for a while.

When you respond, please send work samples and references.

 

If you think you might be a fit for either of these positions please send us an email with your resume.

 

Business, Blizzards and Birthdays

A Story in Photos
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Amanda, Cara and Kelli hit the road Monday night for (and in) a flurry of activity. The Adirondack Destination Marketing Summit was a success, with robust attendance in spite of the blizzard. We shared our stories and insight during the “What We Learned About Millennials” presentation. We were thrilled to hit the stage again with the inspiring Hillarie Logan-Dechene, Director of Philanthropy at the W!ld Center, with the addition of new voices—Stanzi McGlynn (Digital Content Fellow, W!ld Center) and Kathryn Reiss (Owner & Operator, High Falls Gorge) who both shared stories of how our Millennial Toolkit helped inspire their social media and marketing efforts, and the success that they’ve witnessed firsthand.

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We started the day by listening to the opening segment delivered by Jasen Lawrence from ROOST—the room was packed, just as the first snowflakes started to fall.

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Our neighboring booth at the Conference—it was great to see Shannon Oborne in attendance from Paul Smith’s College, and our collateral making a big impression.

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Meeting Stanzi McGlynn, our co-presenter from the W!ld Center, in person for the first time.

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Fierce women before a fierce presentation, just as the room began to fill. Hillarie referred to us as a team, which was a recurring theme through the Summit as speakers encouraged collaboration.

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The dynamic Hillarie, and soon-to-be birthday girl, opening the presentation, “What We Learned from Millennials,” as well as sharing new information about the China Ready initiative.

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Cara with Kathryn Reiss of High Falls Gorge, all smiles after our talk.

Snowflakes the size of quarters were falling from the sky, and we couldn’t resist exploring Lake Placid amid the flurries. We quickly slipped back in time, feeling like kids again, throwing snow in the air and laughing as we struggled through knee-high snow. We bravely trekked through drifts to meet Hillarie for dinner in celebration of her birthday—we enjoyed the extra time spent with her family, getting to know her as not just a client, but a friend. Sharing stories by the fire at The Mirror Lake Inn as we watched the unrelenting snow is a memory that we are surely never going to forget.

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High kicks and hijinks as we romped in the snow, which you should know was not uncommon on the streets in Lake Placid.

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Cara’s striking resemblance to the snow atop the staircase at Mirror Lake Inn.

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Looking in amazement at the parking lot Monday night, wondering which car was ours and how exactly we were going to get out in the morning.

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Winter Wonderland, as we took a (very) slow descent down through Keene Valley.

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Feeling thankful for our safe and successful time in the Adirondacks. Not without a significant amount of gratitude to the workers who cleared the roads, the travelers who stayed off the roads, and to the hosts in Lake Placid who welcomed all of us with open arms.

First & Repeat Impressions

We have a long history of accepting interns at Trampoline. We’ve had high school students come for short stints, college students stay for durations designated by credits they will earn, and we’ve even had people between jobs who want to dip their toes in the agency waters. We try to make sure it’s worth everyone’s time, which means interns get to participate in the design and crit process, they get to experience client meetings, and their voices are genuinely considered.

Last year three of our employees were people who began as interns and, at the end of their internship, were offered a position. Then in the fourth quarter, we brought on two people who had both been interns years ago and then came back to Trampoline with years of design under their belts.

Today’s post is something that they wrote at our request. We talk so much about impressions, whether it’s repeat impressions, first impressions, or lasting impressions, we thought it would be great to hear some different impressions on Trampoline. Here they are, Rob and Leslie, inadvertently twinning as they rock bold glasses, neutral tops, and mild consternation at being pulled off projects for yet another photo opp.

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Trampoline in Leslie’s words:

First, Second, & Third Impressions

The first impression I had of the world of graphic design is when I visited Trampoline when I was a student at Glens Falls High School. Susan Botch, the art teacher, created an initiative where students had a chance to see “art in the real world.” Wide-eyed and excited, we were led up a set of narrow stairs in a downtown Glens Falls building at 196 Glen Street. There we met with the Tramp team, who were enthusiastic and ready to share their work with us. I remember the space well, long and narrow with the conference table up-front by the windows, client work on the walls and desks going all the way to the back. What a fun space to work in. The Tramps were legitimately excited about being there and talking design.

I was thrilled. We can create art for a living?! Graphic design? What is this? I didn’t know, but I was sold.

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Graduate GFHS? Check.

Graduate The College of Saint Rose with a BFA in Graphic Design? Check.

Second Impression.

After graduation, I interviewed and accepted an internship position for the summer at Tramp. This time they were located down the road at 166 Glen Street on the second floor above their retail space, Nine Authentic Goods. To get to their studio space, you walked through the store past an almost entirely local inventory, designed and crafted in the Adirondacks, and up the stairs in the back. I jumped right into working on packaging, signage, t-shirts, logos, map illustration… you name it! It was an invaluable experience to work up designs for merchandise and then to be able to walk through the store to see them on the shelves, let alone see people purchasing them! An internship with Trampoline wasn’t about making coffee, it was about creating and collaborating.

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That summer I won a Nori Award for a personal branding project and the Tramps were there by my side to congratulate me. The feeling that they were genuinely excited about my win made my night. But what was even more touching was that prior to the awards event, Trampoline handed me my own personal “something about being a super awesome intern” Tramp award. While it was an honor that The Albany Ad Club recognized my work, the personal recognition by the Tramp staff, who I worked with every day, felt personal and noteworthy.

Internship ends. Five+ years pass.

Third Impression!

Is there something about being on the second floor that just works? Who knows — but I made my way up, this time via elevator, to the second floor at 11 South Street. For what can be nerve-wracking for a lot of people, my portfolio review and interview felt very comfortable and welcoming. I was excited to share what I had worked on and was eager to learn what future possibilities could be with the team. It felt like coming home.

 

Yes, websites upgrade, logos evolve, offices move… but good company sticks around. What has endured over these past 10+ years and has kept me coming back to Tramp is the sincere passion and care for what the people at Tramp do, all the while staying grounded. The love for design is strong within the family that Trampoline has built. Not only does it show in the great work that is produced, but the ability to enjoy the process of creating together as a team.

 

And now, Rob’s perspective on returning to Trampoline:

Jumping on the Trampoline…Again

In spring of 2012 my Pre-Press Production class had a guest speaker come in. The speaker showed examples of work, talked about the day to day office life and gave insights into running a business to a room full of mostly exhausted second year students (The class was 6 pm – 9 pm and primarily file preparation, mind you). Despite the lingering fog of late nights in the studio that hung over the room, the presentation was not lost on us. 16 heads attentively bobbed along to a story about planning a new business and the weight of jumping off on your own. “Ooo”s and “ahhh”s slipped out at slick images of newly designed beer labels.

After the presentation the guest speaker went to each student and critiqued their current projects, a logo suite for a restaurant that would be expanded into packaging and advertising. When my turn came I presented an admittedly half-assed attempt at a hand done logo featuring a far too (and yet not enough) detailed luchador. It was met with the kindness of a pro speaking to a student, but yet again the lesson was not lost. It needed work, if not to be reconsidered over all. The perfect metaphor for my skill level at the time.
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That speaker was Derek Slayton and that logo certainly didn’t make it into my portfolio when I applied for an internship with Trampoline exactly 1 year later. I, to my own disbelief, secured said internship and was excited to be spending my summer a mere bike ride away from home functioning in an office and making the quality work that one might expect only happens in trendy urban environments, not a sleepy mini-metropolis at the base of the Adirondacks.

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The exposed brick walls and a giant piece of sheet metal we hung our critique pieces on were just half of the charm. The team was warm, welcoming, talented and not short on smack talk. Jokes hurled over the office dividing walls as often as music filled the rooms. Critiques were quick and to the point, yet informed and entertaining. Ideas bounced like excited kids on the company’s namesake. The insights provided that summer served as a macro version of that first critique in Pre-press and I felt as though my skill set grew 10 fold in just the three months I was there.
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After relocating post-graduation, I moved home in July and was lucky to reconnect with the tramps at an AIGA event. The event was at a café that I had been using as my base of operation for freelance. After 6 months of borderline badgering on my part, they reached out about the possibility of doing some work together (imagine full-on Tiger Woods fist pump levels of excitement). The interview felt more like catching up with old friends or teachers than a business ordeal. At one point a certain logo in my portfolio caught Derek’s eye. It was that same restaurant piece revisited after my summer at Trampoline.

The vibe is the same, the client list is ever-expanding, the team is more than double the size, the office is new and the workflow is a little different. The jokes still fly, just over the top of computer screens instead of divider walls. The giant piece of sheet metal is now a standing table. I felt the same sense of excitement I did as a college junior walking in on my first day, still ready to learn, but this time as a contributor and not just a student. No matter what is changed and what is the same it feels good to be back…bouncing on the trampoline.

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Releasing Millennials into the W!ld

Entitled. Broke. Lazy. Glued to their phones. That’s us. Who wants that? Millennials tend to have a bad rap. But we’re also sharers, we prefer experiences over things, some of us are parents, and there are billions of us.

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So how do we convince our own demographic to choose the Adirondacks as a place to spend time and money?

The W!ld Center hired Schireson Associates in New York City to do a study on millennials and the Adirondacks. They approached Trampoline to interpret that data and asked if we could take the study and create a guidebook with strategies that would help businesses, organizations and TPAs reach millennials and get them to the Adirondacks. It was an exciting opportunity for all of us, and for the owners it was a convergence of all the things they aimed to do when they founded Trampoline 13 years ago.

To be honest (TBH), there was a small panic between millennial staffers at first. I hadn’t posted to Instagram in a year, Kelli hadn’t logged into Facebook in months, John had trouble wrapping his brain around the fact that some people don’t want to spend a week in the woods. But that wasn’t the point, there are stronger themes that are the core of this project.

The end result covers more ground than we could ever have imagined. And it’s not just the book itself, it’s the re-emergence of the information and solutions it holds for businesses in the Adirondacks and beyond.

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The guidebook addresses some obstacles that exist in the Adirondacks and offers communication strategies to overcome each of them. We used a variety of already existing businesses and organizations within the Adirondacks to show how these suggestions could work to combat issues identified in the Schireson data. Wild1Wild2To celebrate the wrap of the guidebook the Tramp millennials, Matt (millennial at heart) and friends hiked up Noonmark Mountain in Keene. It was also National Trails Day, so why not? #NationalTrailsDay

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GUIDEBOOK SPOILER: Everyone’s seen the stereotypical beautiful mountain top shot and sunrise shot from the kayak. It stirs interest, but it’s not getting people to the Adirondacks and it’s not getting people to spend money here. We need to appeal to the “indoorsy”.

It was a great day and only enforced a lot of the main issues we addressed:

Connectivity: We lost service in Keene Valley and one of the cars got lost. (I was driving, I own up to the fact that I have zero sense of direction and mostly rely on my phone and Google Maps to get me places, typical Millennial.)

Food & Beverage: Food and beverage is an experience for us. One guy in the group would have traveled all the way to Keene just to go to the Adirondack Cafe for their really fresh and locally sourced food. One car stopped at a food truck on the way back (side note: Food Trucks are awesome and we want more in the Adirondacks). We also talked about heading up to the Lake Placid Pub & Brewery for a couple brews but the need for showers and naps triumphed.

Overwhelmed: “This is a high peak right? No. Seriously?” Being a 46er is not going to be in all our futures.

Options: We were super thankful that we were in a place with options that day. We originally planned to hike to Rainbow Falls but had a dog (FYI, no dogs allowed on that trail) with us and had to switch plans last minute. There were a lot of trail heads in the area but I got very nervous that a couple of us would have to stay behind with the dog and wouldn’t have anything to do. And that would mean separating from the group in a place that doesn’t have cell service. Also, my body is still tired from that hike but I want to take advantage of the Adirondacks and all it has to offer since it’s in my backyard. What else in the Adirondacks is worth the hour or two drive for the day or weekend that isn’t a big hike or camping trip?

Endorsements: We chose this hike based on a recommendation from a friend. Then we talked to other friends and ended up with a group of nine. Afterward, photos of our trip ended up all over Facebook, Instagram, blogs, Twitter and Flickr.

Amenities: We were pretty concerned about finding a milkshake. We ended up driving back to Glens Falls before we got one but if we knew about a shake place on the way back we would have stopped. We’re also all familiar with the Adirondacks so we made sure we had Motrin, bug spray, plenty of water and food with us but a group of millennials not from here may not have been as prepared.

Vastness: Just look at this. How do we combat the sheer vastness of the Adirondacks?

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We also address lodging and worth in the guidebook. A compilation of issues and solutions for all generations in the end. The only difference is that millennials demand (maybe feel entitled?) while other generations want.

Kelli spearheaded the design of the toolkit, her thoughts summed up:

There has been a lack of understanding about all the Adirondacks has to offer… if we can all work together to frame the Adirondacks as an accessible, shareable, exciting place to be we can build a promising future. Not just for Millennials, but for generations to come.

 

Out & About Online and in Person

Late this spring Warren County Tourism selected us to manage social media for Lake George Area on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram. We dove right in.

Lake George Dive In

We all call Warren County home and love it. Representing Warren County allows us to combine what we love in the office and what we do for fun outside the office. Five months in and our team has hiked, biked, fished, gone swimming, made like foodies, worshipped the bounty of local craft beer, and applauded musicians.

We’re not complaining.

Along the way we’ve met some interesting people, like Bella, the winner of her division at the King George Fishing Derby in July.

King George Fishing Derby

We’ve zeroed in on events that draw thousands of visitors, snapped locations that are a stage for engagements and weddings, and set famous words to incomparably beautiful settings in the area. We have appreciated the little things and captured the smiles that the Lake George Area inevitably brings:

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Leaves changing as the temperature drops.

Lake George Area Smiles & Stewarts

Enjoying a free scoop from Stewarts Shops.

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Fishing on the Hudson River.

What’s next? Summer’s over, and let’s face it, winter is coming, so it’s time to share how the Lake George Area is more than a summer destination. Let’s capture how awesome it is in the winter. We’re sharpening our skis, digging our boots out of the basement, and scouting events and the best places to go. We’ll also be offering up contests over the Lake George Area Instagram, Twitter and Facebook in the coming months for when the fireplace calls to you more than the ski trails.

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Share your Lake George area photos with us. We’d love to see them. Tag @LakeGeorgeArea in the photo or use #vacationeer.

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