NEW YORK -- Social media is playing a major role in accelerating the decision cycle of consumers who patronize ski resorts. As a result, one of the country's largest such companies -- Vail Resorts -- has abandoned its long-time advertising strategies and practices. In their place, the billion-dollar-a-year corporation, which operates five major resorts and twenty hotels, has built a new in-house marketing operation that uses social media and other digital venues to constantly engage skiing enthusiasts in real time. CEO Rob Katz explains the dramatic changes.

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