A sales strategy focused on carving out new assets and creating integrated marketing packages is paying dividends for the U.S. Ski & Snowboard Assn.

Case in point: The National Governing Body has posted a roughly 25 percent increase in revenue from sponsorships, licensing deals, ad buys and supplier ties over the year-ago period.

On the sponsorship front, USSA this year has brought on several new partners including Tiffany & Co., Usana Health Sciences, Inc. and two endemic partners: Columbia Sportswear Co. and VF Outdoor, Inc.’s The North Face.

In addition to securing new partners, the USSA also has seen success from re-upping existing sponsors on long-term contracts. The goal: To offset the usual decline in revenue in the years immediately following Winter Games. 

For example, USSA signed North Face to an eight-year partnership, while it renewed Visa Inc. on a seven-year tie that runs through 2018. The renewal marks Visa’s first contract with the NGB that is longer than four years.

“I want to take the ups and downs out of the business and show sustainable growth for the future,” said Andrew Judelson, the USSA’s chief revenue and marketing officer, who joined the NGB in May 2010.

Below, two of the ways the USSA is accomplishing that objective:

Carve out new assets. The USSA has seen success by carving new assets out of existing marketing inventory.  

The NGB in September brought on Tiffany as the primary sponsor of the USSA Gold Pass, a $10,000 season pass that offers unlimited access to ski resorts across the country. The pass—which is marketed to affluent USSA donors—has historically been sold without a sponsor.

“When I joined the USSA, I asked the team who mints the gold pass. It was just a vendor,” said Judelson.

Judelson then approached a contact at Tiffany, a company he previously worked with while serving as CMO of Sports Illustrated. The jeweler creates the Sports Illustrated Sportsman of the Year Trophy.

“I explained the program and told him that I’d love to see Tiffany sponsor the gold pass. Our audience is clearly a Tiffany customer or prospect.”

The timing worked in USSA’s favor. The pass is distributed in late October and early November, the beginning of the holiday sales season.

Tiffany is leveraging the partnership with a signature line of products including pendants, cuff links and tennis bracelets. In addition to consumers, the jeweler is marketing the products to USSA sponsors for use in employee recognition and sales incentive programs.

Create marketing pillars. In addition to carving out assets from existing programs, USSA has placed more emphasis on offering integrated marketing platforms that include on-site, online and other sponsorship inventory.

For example, the NGB this year upsold General Mills, Inc.’s Nature Valley granola bars on presenting status of two events: The Nov. 5 First Tracks event in Vail, Colo. and The Championships racing competition in Winter Park, Colo. The latter event will take place in late March or early April.

The two events give Nature Valley a presence throughout the ski and snowboard season. That includes exposure in event marketing collateral, participation in sponsor cross-promotions and visibility on NBC and UniversalSports.com.

“Our Nature Valley consumers are passionate about spending time outside enjoying nature and the upcoming ski season is a prime opportunity to get outdoors. These events align very well with our marketing strategy by allowing Nature Valley to essentially kick-off the ski season at First Tracks and celebrate the culmination of the season at The Championships,” said Scott Baldwin, Nature Valley marketing manager.

USSA created First Tracks last year as a platform to introduce the Alpine ski team and generate a buzz around the start of the ski and snowboard season.

“When NFL teams break training camp people want to know who is on the team,” said Judelson. “First Tracks helps us create buzz, noise and a reason for being.”

The 2010 event drew roughly 1,500 people, said Judelson, who this year expanded the get-together with a USSA merchandise trailer and a presence by NGB suppliers.  

Nature Valley leveraged the tie with a cross-promotion with Delta Air Lines, Inc. and Marriott Int’l, Inc. that dangled a trip to the event for a family of four. USSA promoted the sweeps on its Facebook page and through other marketing channels.

USSA created The Championships to bridge the gap between elite and recreational alpine racers. The NGB will produce the event in conjunction with Bonnier Corp., a magazine publisher and owner of the NASTAR recreational ski and snowboard race program.

Nature Valley, which titles the NASTAR program, this year renewed its USSA partnership with a five-year contract.