Blogs for Brands, the industry-leading network of outdoor journalists, photographers, videographers, and designers that provides content commerce solutions for brands, announced today the creation of the first Outdoor Blogger Summit (OBS), Oct. 7-9 in Jackson Hole, WY.
“Brands need bloggers. Bloggers need brands. OBS bridges the gap between the worlds of commerce and digital journalism,” said Yoon Kim, founder of Blogs for Brands and now of OBS.
OBS will occur in conjunction with SHIFT, which explores the intersection of outdoor recreation and conservation. OBS will share the secrets of the blogging trade—including how to drive more traffic, work with brands, sell more sponsorships and grow social media—while SHIFT focuses on advancing on-the-ground solutions that leverage outdoor recreation for conservation gains.
The two events will also share programming and facilities, introducing bloggers to content generators in the outdoor space as well as to leading issues of the day.
An overview of the agenda may be found here.
While at first the mashup between OBS and SHIFT may seem odd, to Kim, the pairing makes perfect sense.
“My friends in Oregon are telling me they can’t go hiking because of high fire danger,” said Kim. “My friends in California are saying they can’t ski because of the drought. We’re in this space as a livelihood—but if we don’t protect the planet, we won’t have jobs.”
“When I talk to my blogging friends, a lot of times they don’t get the connection between what’s going on in the world—climate change, the public land grab, the sixth mass extinction—and what we love about being outside. That doesn’t work.”
OBS will be an exclusive affair, with eight nationally renowned speakers and only sixteen openings for bloggers. Most of the openings are being filled by invitation.
SHIFT’s attendees represent a veritable who’s who in the outdoor world, including industry leaders like Dan Nordstrom of Outdoor Research and Peter Metcalf of Black Diamond, athletes from companies like The North Face, and the federal land managers whose decisions affect the places these athletes play.
OBS participants will have the opportunity to network with these thought leaders while learning the internet marketing tactics that drive revenue for both brands and bloggers.
The idea for a joint program arose when Stacy Bare, the director of Sierra Club Outdoors, introduced Kim to SHIFT director Christian Beckwith. The two immediately connected over their shared love for the outdoors, and their shared commitment to preserving it for future generations.
Beckwith and Kim both laugh at the synergies.
“I’m a dinosaur in the world of journalism,” said Beckwith, laughing. The Jackson-based climber edited The American Alpine Journal from 1996–2001, and started Alpinist Magazine in 2001. “Yoon’s the new kid on the block, eating the lunches of all the old-school media types like me. But we share the same values: if we don’t preserve the places where we play, we won’t have a planet… and we won’t have jobs.”
“That could be our motto,” agrees Kim. “Preserving our planet, protecting our jobs.”
Tickets for SHIFT go on sale Aug. 1.
Tickets and more information about OBS may be found here.