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Backcountry Marketing

EP: 158 How Marketing has Impacted the Evolution of Mountain Biking

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In this conversation, Sakues Bankson, the snow and mountain bike category editor at Patagonia, discusses the role of media and marketing in the evolution of sport, particularly in the mountain bike industry. He highlights the challenges of communicating about mountain biking and the importance of conscious language use. Sakeus also explores the balance between accessibility and aspirational content, as well as the potential impact of redefining mountain biking. He emphasizes the need for companies to be responsible in their communication and marketing efforts, considering both the environment and the diverse audience of mountain bikers. The conversation explores the themes of authenticity in marketing, the nuance of language and word choice, understanding the diversity of mountain bikers, considerations for environmental impact, and the potential of mountain biking.


  • The language and imagery used in marketing can have a significant impact on how mountain biking is perceived and the actions it encourages.
  • Companies in the mountain bike industry have a responsibility to communicate in a way that is inclusive, accessible, and environmentally conscious.
  • Finding the balance between accessibility and aspirational content is crucial for attracting new riders while still appealing to the core audience.
  • Redefining mountain biking and challenging traditional definitions can lead to unexpected environmental benefits and the creation of green spaces.
  • Being clever in marketing and communication involves understanding the diverse audience of mountain bikers and speaking to them as humans rather than relying on stereotypes or jargon. Authenticity is crucial in marketing to maintain legitimacy and resonate with the target audience.
  • Language and word choice can have different interpretations among different user groups, so it's important to be aware of the potential repercussions.
  • Mountain biking is a diverse sport with a wide range of participants, and it's important to recognize and cater to this diversity.
  • Environmental impact should be considered in mountain biking, including the potential harm to trails and surrounding ecosystems.
  • Mountain biking has the potential to be a healing and community-building activity with positive impacts.

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