Perfectly in tune with the hipster culture and the Instagram language, the outdoor trend, with its wild nature and unspoiled landscapes, is one of the most interesting among the latest visual phenomenons. For sure, it represents a pleasant alternative to the bright minimal interiors of the coolest influencers or the food bloggers’ impeccable table settings.
Where does it come from? The passion for the mountain is not new, nor is the beauty of its woods and its peaks; what seems new, though, is the interest these places seem to inspire among a wider range of the public. Is it another reaction to the digitalization process of our society? From the innovative solutions for the urban space, to the apps for our homes, the human environment has slowly turned into a digital environment. Our everyday life seems built around a constant, sometimes morbid, relationship with technology. If, on one side, this process implies a smarter way to manage our time and opens new work and consumption opportunities, on the other side there’s a growing tension towards somewhere pure, open, authentic. A place where to release the stress of our daily routine and find our own pace.
From this point of view, we can associate the outdoor trend with the desire to find a personal space, to live an intimate moment, in which connection leaves space to reflection and digital is replaced by the non-mediated relationship with the self, with the others, with the nature. Hashtags such as #outdoors #explore #livefolk #liveauthentic open to a world far from city frenzy. Worlds made of trees, glaciers, rocks and waterfalls. Profiles such as the ones of Cameron Anderson or Simone Bramante evoke a strong sense of freedom and inspiration and this represents a crucial point for all those brands associated with open air.
Outdoor trend and communication: from product to inspiration
Hiking On The Moon – “a blog created by and for mountain lovers” gives Quechua that emotional twist that high-performance products usually thrive to communicate. A transmedia project, which goes from the blog to a magazine (available in print and digital format) and a tv channel, whose content brings the user to a journey through the most extraordinary and challenging peaks of the world. Along with it, of course, an Instagram profile that, under the #YourMountain motto, tells the stories of those who love, face, respect, live the mountain day after day. Nothing less for Patagonia which, with the ironic #vivalosfunhogs, collects the most memorable experiences of who, spending nights in the tent and fishing their breakfast, find happiness in the contact with nature.
The outdoor trend opens to a wider vision, which goes beyond the paths among the woods to connect with the search for inspiration and authenticity, the passion for the simple things and the ability to appreciate anything surrounding us. Philips knows it well. With its #HealthyLiving and #aBetterNow, the company chooses to move its focus from the product to the feelings and experiences anybody lives inside and outside their houses. The result is a surprising and fascinating Instagram profile, structured as a collective story, made of the elements which make human life, from home to food, to the relationship with the nature and the self.
I often hear people talking about how youngster prefer sea over mountain, the days on the beach followed by the nights at the club, how mountain is now becoming a destination for old people. These pictures, these profiles, these projects not only demonstrate that there is much more beyond the usual stereotypes, but they also offer the opportunity to create new marketing activities, able to change the moutain’s perceived image, attract a younger target and communicate the fascination of a natural heritage often undervalued.
(featured image by Cameron Anderson)