Outdoors Influencers: how should brands work with this niche branch of content creators?

Marketing, Research

In recent years, the increased focus on health and wellness has paved the way for new creators to inspire their audience to lead an active lifestyle. Among these are outdoors influencers, that seek to motivate and inspire their followers to go outside and enjoy what nature has to offer. These influencers specifically create content revolving around outdoor destinations, gear, sports, and causes. With this comprehensive approach to content and inspiration, often presented in a visually appealing form, these creators represent excellent sources with which you can grow your brand. Learn how your brand can benefit from working with these high-engagement profiles.

How can outdoor influencers benefit your brand?

Outdoor influencers present a unique combination of qualities that stand out in the media landscape through the unique and varied qualities they offer. These creators use their platform to inspire and motivate their followers to lead an active and healthy lifestyle in multiple ways, whether it be camping, hiking, or skiing. However, the core message lies in inspiring to go outside – D2 Magazine, therefore, coined outdoors influencers as “outfluencers”. Hence, outdoor influencers arguably have an encouraging approach to their content: through sharing their knowledge and experiences, these influencers can make the outdoors more accessible for their followers, inspiring and motivating them to seize the outdoors to a larger extent.

Meet outdoors influencers Stine & Jarlen

VOCAST has spoken to influencers Stine & Jarlen about the stance of wildlife and outdoors creators. The couple inspires their followers through photography and tips for journeys that they undertake along with their 1-year-old son and three dogs. Read the couple’s insights into the creation and collaboration in our featured interview. 

Branding through outdoor influencers

Depending on the specific focus of the influencer, one can find numerous areas and setting in which their gear and products can be portrayed. Today, outdoor influencers can inspire their audience to seize nature in numerous ways, whether that be leisurely activities like hiking, skiing, or camping, or extreme sports like mountain biking, climbing, or rafting. There is virtually a community within every area of interest, in which the influencer share inspiration and tips. Through this, the outdoors influencers can create solid communities within their area of interest and expertise, making them trusted sources of knowledge, ultimately translating to high engagement levels. Essentially, these profiles do, through consistent and thorough content manifest as solid sources of knowledge and thereby dependable advocates.

What makes outdoor influencers unique?

Stine & Jarlen tell us that the goal for many hiking and outdoors influencers is to use as “little as possible”, and to use what they have for a long time.

“We enjoy working with brands to find the very best products for different situations so that we can promote and recommend sustainable and well-thought-out products for our followers.”

They continue to tell us that the trust between them and their followers is very strong due to the fact that the products they use and promote are tested in often extreme situations. They need to be able to trust their great, clothes, products, etc. If they can show a setting, scenario, or activity that their followers know they have experience in, and show products that help in the given setting, it is always a success: “a combination of building credibility through stories and showcasing a product in a post is also a good way of showcasing the products” they explain.

The importance of destination

The location and environment of activity play an important part in the content for outdoors influencers. More so, the profiles share specific tips for nature destinations and specific journeys, like skiing treks and hikes to undertake. Thus, the elements of travel and destinations remain a central part of their appeal. Here, you can find outdoors influencers conveying specific journeys for hiking and exploration both in your central area or a destination you desire to visit. By this, the “backdrop” of the outdoors influencers’ content becomes one of its key components. This is emphasized in their content; instead of the specific activity conducted being the main point of focus, for example, a hike in the mountains, the beautiful environment, and the scenery the hike might just be what motivates the audience to go outside and do the same. In that way, outdoors influencers are also comparable to travel influencers, as showing landscape and environment becomes a central part of their content.

Exceptional production quality

Further, outdoors and wildlife influencers stand out in their approach to visual presentation. Many of these creators are professional photographers and video creators, collaborating with camera brands like GoPro. Thus, the emphasis on photography is very strong – the level of visual quality is on a professional level. This is a favorable quality for brand collaborations, as these influencers create a visually outstanding environment for product promotion. Not only can collaborating with wildlife influencers portray the product in use in its intended state, whether that be at a campsite or on a summit but it can also be conveyed in a professional aesthetic.

How should brands partner with outdoor influencers?

Long-term partnerships are a good way to work and are often essential to building trust, according to Stine & Jarlen. A long-term partnership also allows for a larger line of products to be tested, as the value for many of their followers is their ability to recommend something related to their specific situation. They advise brands who partner with outdoors influencers that the creators be given time to actually test the products.

“We value being able to give feedback to the client on their product as well as the brand using our content to use in their own socials, as we also build our own brand further on our partners’ good name and reputation.”

Stine & Jarlen tell us that their followers respond to a combination of posts promoting products, but also showing how to service and repair your gear is a good way of building trust and long-term positive brand awareness in our audience.

Market Landscapes

VOCAST has created curated press lists of prominent outdoors influencers in the following markets: 

Norway 🇳🇴

In Norway, sharing content revolving around the outdoors, like hiking and skiing, remains among the most popular types of content on social media; showcasing outdoor adventures and journeys within the country has become an inevitable trend. Furthermore, the media coverage led to an increased demand for outdoor equipment like hammocks, sleeping bags, and randonné skis. With the natural establishment and interest in everything outdoors in Norway, the target market for outdoor products spans wide. Hence, the media value of the outdoor lifestyle is becoming increasingly recognized, and the influencers’ arena is prominent and ever-growing. In the fall of 2021, Vixen Influencer Awards created wildlife and travel as an award, solidifying the establishment of these influencers in the media landscape.

Sweden 🇸🇪

There is no doubt that Sweden is a country with impressive nature and beautiful landscapes, which makes it an excellent hiking destination. Due to the diverse nature with high mountains, captivating forests, lakes, and long coastlines, as well as shifting seasons and large public access to the wilderness (Allemansrätten), hiking activities hold a high position among Swedes. Furthermore, outdoor clothing brands such as Fjällräven and Patagonia have become a trend not only for the outdoors but also for Swedes living an urban lifestyle in the cities. Hence, hiking is today not only reserved for a niche outdoor community but presents a part of Swedish culture.

France 🇫🇷

France is home to some of the most popular skiing and hiking routes in Europe, such as the mountain regions of the Alps and the Pyrenees. Thereby, hiking and skiing are deep-rooted in the French active lifestyle. It is very common for families to spend their holidays up in the mountains. Additionally, the range of French media that portray outdoor activities spans wide. Today, one can find athletes, photographers, influencers, and magazines that dedicate their content to the French outdoors lifestyle, and by that also promote tourism in the region.

The U.S. 🇺🇸

In the US, the endless opportunities for wildlife and adventure are reflected in the influencer market. Here, one can find various profiles showcasing nature activities, mainly falling within two categories: outdoor photographers with a large emphasis on landscape photography and camera gear, collaborating with brands such as Canon, and instructional adventurers, advising their audiences on journeys and how to conduct them, as well as gear recommended for use.

Outdoors influencers

VOCAST has gathered the most prominent outdoors lifestyle influencers from select markets. Meet some of them here:

🇳🇴 Helene Myhre

Helene Myhre is an outdoors, travel, and photography enthusiast. She shares content revolving around travelling, outdoors lifestyle, and photo tips with her followers. She has a large online following, and has also written a book about journeys and destinations to visit in Norwegian nature.

Followers: 210k

🇸🇪 Hildur Karlsson

Hildur Karlsson is a Swedish influencer passionate about hiking, adventure, skiing, photography & the outdoors. She lives the city life in Stockholm in between her outdoor travels.

Followers: 195k

🇫🇷 Anne Dubndidu

As a sports and outdoor enthusiast, Anne dedicated her blog and social media to her passion – where she shares her favorite hiking routes across France as well as outdoor clothing and equipment.

Followers: 122k

🇺🇸 Morgan Philips

Morgan Phillips is a Seattle-based adventure and lifestyle photographer. Born and raised in Birmingham, Alabama he started adventuring at nineteen. Morgan combines his passion for adventure with his passion for photography, blended in order to document and share the beauty of his unique way of life.

Followers: 385k

Sara is the Norwegian Market Coordinator at VOCAST, responsible for Norwegian fashion and lifestyle research. When not at VOCAST, she studies Brand and Communications at Copenhagen Business School. Besides work and studies, she is a travel, music, and movie enthusiast.



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