What’d I say?
I’m going to pretend that didn’t just happen… If you’re into your outdoor adventures then you’ll definitely know about Poler Stuff – the achingly hip brand that makes tents, sleeping bags and other neat camping-related products. Starting out small the brand has gone from strength to strength, in a meteoric rise that has been propelled in large part by content. Its collaboration with Nike last year marked something of a watershed moment, as it crossed from ‘best kept secret’ to ‘next big thing’.
And you say it’s content that got Poler where it is?
That’s right, Poler specialises in visual and video content in particular. The brand started out with just a small line of products and took its gear out into the wilds with nothing but a camera and a thirst for exploration. Its photo essays, called ‘Adventures’, have become the backbone of the brand’s content – a way to show off new ranges, but also to excite and delight consumers at the possibilities opened to them when they pick up a piece of Poler gear.
Exciting stuff, but how does Poler keep it fresh? I see there are 82 different collections in the Adventure section.
As well as shots by brand founder Benjy Wagner (an accomplished photog in his own right), the brand now uses shots by top-flight camera jocks like Chris Burkard and John Prolly, as well as travelling further afield for its shots. Recent expeditions have visited Iceland, Burma, Kilamanjaro and Mexico.
So ‘Adventures’ is a part of Poler’s website. What about other visual channels like Instagram and Tumblr?
Poler’s Instagram and its Tumblr share a lot of the same content, with lots of shots from ‘Adventures’ being repurposed into the streams – it’s all beautiful and compelling, and, perhaps most importantly, it’s updated regularly so fans keep on coming back. If we had to draw a distinction we’d say the Insta account is a little more product focused, but that hasn’t put people off following the brand – Poler’s page has more than 180,000 followers.
Wow, that’s more than other outdoor brands Arc’teryx and Salomon put together, and only a few thousand less than super global content brand The North Face.
With a large following like Poler’s, a brand would be mad not to try and crowd-source some content along with the great stuff it produces itself. To achieve this Poler has a couple of fun hashtags it uses to pry out the best photos from its fans’ photostreams: #adventuremobile, which is all about outlandish, rugged vehicles from around the world; and #campvibes, which encourages Instagrammers to snap their Poler products out in the wild.
I can almost smell the campfires from here.
Funny you should mention smell of burning pine, Poler also had a hand in this product, Campfire Cologne.
Wait, haven’t I seen this before?
Well it was featured in our regular Monday Funday post a few months ago, and while it’s not strictly Poler branded content, it does share a lot of the same characteristics with the brand’s own videos – a quirky sense of humour being the main one. Here’s Poler’s 2014 range film:
Say what you like about hipsters, they sure do go camping in style.
So Poler is nailing video, it has great collaborations and its whole brand is seemingly built on an adventurous approach to content, but we’ve actually saved the most impressive thing for last. This piece of Poler’s content (click) achieved something that millions of pounds of investment and years of campaigning couldn’t.
And what’s that then?
It actually made us want to visit Scotland!