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5 reasons why your brand should attend the Outdoor Media Summit

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The event scene for the outdoor industry is changing rapidly. Consumer shows, regional buying opportunities and hyper-targeted conferences are becoming an increasingly important part of any outdoor brand’s strategy. In this new world, the Outdoor Media Summit (OMS) – one of the nation’s premier educational conferences for media and marketers in the outdoor space – is a must-attend event.

Here are five reasons your marketing team should head to North Lake Tahoe’s beautiful Incline Village in late October for OMS.

OMS predicts the future for you

One of the show’s mission statements is to look beyond the horizon and identify the next step in digital media and marketing. Each year, a steering committee made up of the biggest outdoor brands and the media highlights the hottest trends in the digital space. Then, the WHO team recruits leading minds from these spaces as speakers.

Whether you’re a brand marketing manager, media editor, or creative, staying on top of trends is essential to your success as a professional. This year, some of those trends include vertical format video, engagement with podcasters, and category SEO for Amazon and Google.

But knowing the trends is only one piece of the puzzle. OMS focuses on teaching participants how to perform them. Each of the show’s breakout sessions includes a practical element so that when you go out, you’ll be armed with tactical execution strategies to do better business.

What WHO participants say:

“Compared to OR and BGS, I rank OMS number one for intimacy, content, and professional development. I learned some things I didn’t know were so fascinating, especially the TikTok discussion. You don’t get this anywhere else.—Nancy Bouchard, PR Representative for Adidas Terrex/Five Ten

OMS has a unique formula for breakout sessions

The Outdoor Media Summit first built its reputation as a conference through breakout sessions. The show opts for a mini-presentation format (as opposed to the traditional “stools and moderator” style) where three speakers present a topic for approximately 10 minutes each. After each speaker concludes, a Q&A session follows. WHO organizers find that this format leads to the highest engagement and greatest benefit to the audience.

Breakout sessions are guaranteed to be of great value, as they are based on one central rule: sharing secrets. Before speakers are allowed to present, they must sign an agreement that says, “I promise to tell my secrets on the subject rather than speaking at a high level, speaking capriciously, or making a sales pitch.” . Without agreeing to these terms, speakers cannot be on the roll.

OMS brings new media faces

Each year, OMS scans the outdoor media landscape to identify the biggest personalities and invites them to speak or attend the show. Many of these people are not typical trade show goers. Some are not endemic; others are rising stars. Not only does this give brands the opportunity to interact with new faces, but it also gives brands the opportunity to pollinate new media that doesn’t show up at other industry events.

In 2021, OMS brought in editors from Wiredthe New York Times, women’s health, Business Insider, and more. This year, the show will expand its list of non-endemic publications even further. It will host trending TikTokers like Nelson Holland, Jeffrey Binney, and Hello Becky, YouTubers like Miranda Webster and Noah Kane, and other top Instagrammers, podcasters, and vloggers.

The programming is top notch

Destination marketing organizations host dozens of conferences each year, so when one team member describes WHO as “one of the most organized conferences” they’ve attended (see below), it’s is serious praise.

At OMS, thanks to the organizers’ extensive planning, you won’t have to worry about things like how to get from point A to point B, what to eat or even how to start a conversation. All you have to do is show up with your favorite note-taking device and you’ll walk away inspired to tackle tough marketing challenges. (You may even make a friend or two along the way.)

What WHO participants say:

“Everything is so organised. I like the way the program is going. —Aaron Mullin, Director of Communications and Marketing at Visit Bentonville

“One of the most organized conferences I have attended.” —Carrie Cousins, Director of Digital Marketing for Roanoke Regional Partnership


The question of “return on events” is a growing concern, and for good reason. Brands are increasingly demanding on their spending and even more cautious on their environmental footprint. Outdoor Media Summit adheres to a zero waste philosophy by offsetting the carbon produced by travel and working closely with hotels to eliminate single-use plastic.

The event is also incredibly affordable compared to other shows. At a typical trade show – factoring in the price of booth, labor, travel, accommodation and food – brands can easily spend five figures to attend. At the Outdoor Media Summit, a Conference + Hotel ticket (which includes two nights of accommodation at a Four Diamond resort, six meals, three happy hours, and round-trip airport transfers) costs less than $1,200.

OMS is able to offer this rock-bottom award thanks to the incredible support of its destination sponsors, including this year’s: the Incline Village Crystal Bay Visitors Bureau.

What WHO participants say:

“A lot of bang for the buck for sure.” —Seyl Park, Marketing Manager at SylvanSport

“I attended four press events this year and WHO was by far the best. The seminars were the best, the treasure hunt was the best. The other events weren’t for people like me. At the end of OMS, we had more interactions than at any other event,” —Ryan Spinks, Director of Brand Development at QuietKat

Meaningful connections in an authentic setting

Real connections are hard to make through Zoom meetings, conference calls, or half-hour appointments at busy trade shows. The real deal is cultivated when peers can spend quality time in small groups (being outdoors in beautiful mountain towns doesn’t hurt either). That’s why OMS coordinates fun small-group activities like scavenger hunts at the event.

When you fill a room with hundreds of the best marketers and media in the outdoor industry, magic tends to happen. This is the basic philosophy behind the OMS model.

What WHO participants say:

“It was great to be in person with like-minded people in my field. I loved learning from experienced marketers and influencers while exploring a beautiful area. —Meaghan Ruby, Marketing Manager at Minus33

Convinced you have to attend? Interested in knowing more? Schedule a call and see if a hyper-targeted media event like Outdoor Media Summit might be right for you. E-mail [email protected] Where [email protected] to log in.

More questions? OMS can probably answer it here. Ready to nail it? Register for WHO 2022.