We've made some pretty big changes to how Skiology Weather & News works and this is the best place to find out what this all means and how things will work. In short, much of our content will remain free, all long-form content will be housed on this site, but much of our weather forecasting coverage will be premium content and will require a paid subscription in order to access. We'll also deliver the news, weather, and snow to your inbox if you subscribe, and add on some other subscriber perks as well.
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While we have moved our long-form content off of social media and onto our site, we will be sharing links back to news and weather articles on at least our Facebook Page and Instagram next season. Short-form content that isn't appropriate for a full article will appear on our Facebook Page with some also shared to Instagram. This might for instance include a radar capture showing an approaching winter storm in real-time, or a share of a news article with just a small introduction. We will remain active in the Skiology Community on Facebook as well and might share some news and weather articles there as well.
As far as subscription features go there are really only two levels, Free and Premium, but we will have Premium Group (3 accounts) and Business Group (5 accounts) also offered with the same Premium access for each individual account. Let's break down those differences first and then talk about the Core Season vs. the Off-Season.
NOTE: Some off-season functionality will not be available until a later date. We still have plenty of work to do. Most notably, we are not yet set up to handle adding extra users for Premium Group and Business Group subscription levels, but this is our next action item and we hope to have that working by August. Deals and our weather Dashboard are also a work in progress.
We are offering a Free basic subscription for for those who don't yet see or understand the value of paying for our Premium Subscription.
Free basic subscriptions grant access to our Daily Weather Updates provided during the ski season in the early evening the day before so that you can plan for what is happening the next day. In this same email you will also get a digest of other articles that we had posted in the previous day. This will not however include medium-range, long-range and storm forecasting. You also will not have access to our Skiology Storm Updates which is where most of the actionable forecasting will be.
We will include access to a part of our weather Dashboard where we provide resources such as radar and some NWS forecast data. We'll provide some Deals as well, but the best deals will go to our paying subscribers, and in some cases just one deal can pay for more than what a Premium Subscription costs.
NOTE: Everyone who signs up for a Free basic subscription prior to our official launch will receive a limited opportunity to become a Premium member for 20% off our regular price. We expect our official launch to happen in Late July to early August.
Premium Subscriptions get you everything we have to offer, most importantly all of our own daily, medium-range, long-range, and winter storm forecasting content. A Premium Subscription could save you both money and disappointment by helping you avoid blowing money on trips, reservations, gas as a result of getting skunked. It could also help you find the deepest pow around, and all for about the cost of one cup of coffee per month. This should be a no-brainer for any snow lover who has a little patience to read before committing to a plan.
Newsletters are an important part of what we will be offering since they will provide instant notification to all subscribers when we post actionable content. There will no longer be a roll of the dice as to when and if a social media platform will show our posts to you, you won't need to seek it out, and that is a very big deal! We'll be including the following two newsletters with the Premium Subscription:
1. Daily Weather Updates Newsletter delivered in the early evening most days in the core season covering the next day, medium-range, and long-range outlooks along with a summary of other articles from the previous day.
2. Skiology Storm Updates Newsletter specifically covering storms where 6" more of snow is expected across a number of ski areas, including snowfall, precipitation type, wind hold, and driving forecasts.
We'll also be including some other perks just to Premium Subscribers such as 20% off our own swag, special discounts from partners, access to our full weather Dashboard that will include daily updates to charts and imagery from a collection of sources and our own maps. You will also be able to comment on articles and ask questions.
We are offering a Premium Group subscription that offers 3 accounts for the price of 2, and a Business Group subscription that is required for ski area management and other decision-makers who consult our forecasting for business purposes, and we'll add in up to 5 accounts for people in the organization to use. Note, in some cases we will be willing to accept vouchers for tickets in exchange for Business Group access that we would primarily give away in random drawings for our paying subscribers.
If you are looking to hit some pow and need to plan ahead, this is how you do it, and we're the only ones providing actionable and reliable coverage specifically geared for skiers and riders. Even if you are just a weekender or occasional snow slider with a fixed destination, knowing ahead of time allows you to prepare, drive more safely, and approach the day with appropriate expectations so that you aren't disappointed.
NOTE: Prior to our official launch, which will happen sometime between late July and early August, we will be offering all of our supporters from this last season a limited opportunity to become a Premium member for 20% off our regular price.
Core Season vs. Off-Season Coverage and Newsletters
While we will offer news and weather coverage all year long, the Core Season for Skiology Weather & News is approximately 6 months and runs from November through April, coinciding with the opening and closing of most ski areas. During the core season we will be providing daily updates for weather and of course covering more deeply any winter storms that are expected to drop more than 6" of snow across a number of ski areas. We plan to provide some pre-season weather updates and some late spring weekend updates also, just not daily in the shoulder seasons. We will be more active during the core season in other areas as well such as Deals offered to our subscribers.
In the Off-Season we'll cut back since not everyone wants to hear about snow and skiing and riding all year long. Daily Updates for weather and storm coverage will not be offered since we only cover winter weather for ski areas. News and non-forecasting weather content as well as some Deals will be offered in the off-season, but we may convert to just sending a weekly digest of what we have posted so that we aren't hammering our subscribers daily with emails when interest is low. These articles will be shared in real-time on social media and will be available on our site. We do wish to offer some Deals also in the off-season, but for the time being we are focused on other functionality so no promises this year.
Everyone who subscribes can turn their email subscriptions off and on by going to their profile. This only takes one click. At the start of every ski season we will default all of the email subscriptions back to being on. We may also remove Free subscriptions that have not been active for a year or more.