After making its first serious foray into the snowboard apparel market three years ago, Helly Hansen has enjoyed growth that is nothing short of phenomenal in its Board Sports division – which includes its snowboarding apparel line.
According to Helly’s Board Sports Business Unit Manger Clark Campbell, the division has been growing 70 to 100 percent each year. “When we were first considering entering the snowboard apparel market, the top management wanted us to devise a plan for Helly to be one of the top five brands,” says Campbell. Judging from the numbers Campbell shared with SNOWboarding Business, it appears the brand is closing in on that goal at least in volume.
However, Campbell is the first to admit that Helly’s marketing message has been less than clear when it comes to the snowboard marketplace: “Our ads were horrible a few years ago, and we still have a great opportunity to explain to retailers and our consumers just what the Helly snowboard program is all about,” says”” Campbell.
Fortunately, Campbell has at least two powerful weapons to make sure the Helly message is one target for next year. Pro rider Jane Mauser was recently hired as the international snowboard marketing manager. Marius Johansen, a pro from Norway, now works as Helly’s snowboard service manager. Both of them have been hired to make sure Helly brings in the right type of team riders and to help shape the creative for Helly’s ads for next year – among many other job duties. “It’s important to have the p eople who are out there living the sport every day also be the ones making the decisions one that riders will help are program the most and what our marketing message to retailers should be,” he says.
But you won’t see Mauser at the show this week, she’s out on a photo shoot and whirlwind tour of Europe. If her job keeps her out of Vegas to go snowboarding maybe she does have it figured out.