Featured Interview: Jamie Starr – Spyder’s New Marketing Manager

Posted By: The Ski Channel on March 9, 2012 3:26 pm

Spyder Active Sports, Inc is one of the most iconic brands in the snow sports industry. The Colorado-based manufacturer of premium technical ski apparel continues to evolve and innovate throughout the years. In the spirit of continued growth and progressing its brand and sport of skiing, Spyder has named Jamie Starr as its new marketing manager. Jamie will power all of Spyder’s web content, social and viral media, public relations, digital initiatives and product stories. Effective March, Starr will begin operating out of the company’s Boulder, Colorado headquarters.

Starr brings a wide variety of skills to the role that is unique to the entire industry. Starr has grown up surrounded by the core of the ski industry and is able to draw upon this rich upbringing, and utilize his deep roots within the ski world to lend a credible and conscientious voice to Spyder’s marketing initiatives. In addition to being a life-long passionate skier, Jamie has backgrounds in marketing, social media, web content, copywriting and journalism. Prior to joining the team, he has served as managing editor and brand consultant for the Spear Creative Group and as an editor of SNOW Magazine, based out of Aspen.

Starr hails from Crested Butte, CO and holds both undergraduate and J.D. degrees from the University of Colorado at Boulder. He is an avid skier, cyclist and is well versed in technology, social media, gadgetry, photography, film, music and culture.

“Spyder’s marketing department runs at Mach speed and does not really have a down time – always planning and always building on ideas better supporting our retailers and brand partners.  We were looking for a progressive candidate with the ‘it’ factor to step into the marketing role,” said Russ Rowan, Spyder Vice President of Sales and Global Marketing. He went on to say, “Jamie has a rare blend of advanced-circuited brain matter, a magnetic personality and a broad range of experience in social and viral media that uniquely qualifies him to drive the Spyder message to an ambitious level of success that will directly benefit our dealer base.”

We were stoked on the big news and decided to give Jamie a quick call to congratulate him on the new role and find out what he has planned for his new role at Spyder.


The Ski Channel: How does it feel to be a part of the team representing Spyder?

Jamie Starr: It feels amazing. This is a brand I’ve been acquainted with my entire life. During my youth growing up in Crested Butte I was heavily involved in competitive ski racing. Spyder was a brand that every little kid ski racer wanted to wear.


TSC: What experience have you had with their product personally?

JS: Throughout my youth, almost everything I ever owned was Spyder. I can remember the first Spyder ski team jacket I had. It was light blue with a bright red stripe across the chest. You would always see the older kids on the team wearing these, and it was something the younger racers would strive to obtain.

It always made you feel fast, not necessarily invincible — but gave you courage. Spyder designs inspire the adrenaline and courage needed to push your limits — at least it always came through that way to me. I was also a baseball player and could always be seen wearing my Spyder baseball cap. I ended up gaining the nickname “Spyder” on my teams.


TSC:  What were the circumstances that inspired you to assume this role?

JS: I’ve been looking for a fitting role within the ski industry for quite some time. I definitely come from a mixed background (with my law degree and journalism pursuits), but I’ve always been involved in and understood the ski industry. I keep up with all news and happenings religiously, and pride myself on possessing an encyclopedic knowledge of the industry.

I’ve been really impressed with the current leadership and vision at Spyder. They have so many innovative projects in works, to be a part of that excitement is exactly what I’ve been searching for.

Right off the bat, I got the sense that my story resonated with the leadership at the company. Usually people want to pin me as a lawyer due to my background, but the people at Spyder were able to see the real me — especially after supplementing my resume with my portfolio of ski-related content and blog. They were able to see what made me tick — which is skiing, mountains and the culture that surrounds it. These are of course the aspects of the industry that Spyder already represents extremely well.

So far I click with people here pretty darn well — I must say.


TSC:  Being a Colorado-native, what kind of perspective are you able to lend this position?

JS:  Essentially people like me are in a natural position to be able to take our life experiences in the ski industry and authentically deliver a message to the mass market about how amazing skiing is.

In terms of social media, I want to develop an authentic voice in a way that hasn’t been accomplished before. I know this sport and it is at the core of who I am. It is such a natural feeling job, and using online tools I can give the Spyder message some context with what I’ve seen and felt throughout my life and career.


TSC: What are some of your plans and initiatives going forward?

JS: Collaborations are going to be a huge initiative going forward. There have been a lot of these types of projects already in the works (such as the Spyder-themed Audis). The key is to identify other brands with similar identities, looks and character.

The other area I intend to ramp up our efforts are in the utilization of Web 2.0 technologies. Spyder has been around since the 1970s and is a highly visual brand. Through social networks such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, etc. we will able to convey those aesthetics to a wider audience, and engage them on a consistent basis.

I want to break things down to their basic elements and tell a story.


- End of Interview