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September 5, 2013

Free Ski Himalaya renamed to FSH

by Chris Werren

Free Ski Himalaya becomes FSH – The Gulmarg Snow Experts

In 2005 we launched our website Free Ski Himalaya (www.freeskihimalaya.com) to promote and market our ski programs in Gulmarg and our trekking expeditions all over the Himalaya. The name “Free Ski Himalaya” was chosen as it was closest to the description of the main activity we planned to run in this part of the world.

Since then Free Ski Himalaya has grown constantly and has become a professional and well established guiding company in Gulmarg with more than 150 guests from all over the world who participate every winter in the FSH powder ski programs. During the same time Gulmarg also became more known in the skiing community and has established itself as a preferred backcountry skiing resort on the ski destinations maps.

Whereas Gulmarg is today a known entity on the market Free Ski Himalaya has more or less remained the name of a website for Gulmarg ski and guiding services. The website is well positioned in search engines for a variety of keywords but the name “Free Ski Himalaya” has not turned into the brand name we feel is required for the long term market positioning of our activities. Today when people ask around for professional guiding services in Gulmarg they often get answers like this “there are two companies, the one of the bald guy from Switzerland called Chris and the other one of the guy with the dreadlocks from Australia called Bill”. Of course when people use our names in conjunction with Gulmarg to search for skiing opportunities in Kashmir or the Himalaya they will find us.

While we are pleased with our present position in search engine results for many keywords we still identified a number of areas for improvements to achieve better results for a wider area of Gulmarg related web search terms and also to obtain a stronger presence in the non-German speaking parts of the world.

First we had therefore to create a short and easy to remember company/brand name and a logo to position all our services in Gulmarg, (the guiding team, the programs, the transport services and the lodging partner). Ideally the name should in some way also remain related to Free Ski Himalaya and include Gulmarg too.

The second step was to create a website which is focused on providing information on our services in Gulmarg only and which assures that all relevant information that differentiates our service offer is presented on just one site and is accessible by just one click.

Finally we felt that information about our services in Gulmarg should be available in the three major languages our guests speak and understand.

Our New Name = FSH

The new name FSH was defined quite quickly, first it is the abbreviation of Free Ski Himalaya, second the abbreviation has already been used internally for some time and third even when people use FSH today in conjunction with ski, Chris or Gulmarg they are shown our classic Free Ski Himalaya website or our Blogs as result of their web searches.

The second step in our aim to improve our brand awareness was to create a web platform that provides “instant access to all Gulmarg related ski information” and to our complete service offer with “just one click”. As we could not redesign the Free Ski Himalaya website without compromising our existing strong position for certain key web search terms we were forced to create a new website to meet the “just one click access” requirement and to present the information in three different languages.

In addition to providing the “just one click information access” with the new website our aim is of course also to be better positioned for Gulmarg related search terms where we miss out today and to increase our presence in the non-German speaking internet community.

With our new Gulmarg centric website www.gulmargsnowexperts.com we have addressed most of the defined requirements and hope that from now on our site will serve as a well-liked platform for useful and comprehensive information about Gulmarg for ski guests and visitors from all parts of the world.

FSH – A Family of Professionals     

With this Blog we would finally also like to give some information on who we are from a less formal perspective than in the “About Us” section on our websites.

Although our team in Gulmarg spends only 3 month of the year together we have in the course of the past years build up a team spirit that goes beyond the typical employer – employee or buyer – seller relationship.

As we operate all in an environment where we always must be prepared for the unexpected and where hardly ever anything goes according to plan a tremendous amount of flexibility and a full commitment to the common goal of “total guest happiness” is expected from each team member.

Our team in cooperation with our service partners in Gulmarg has in the meantime become a highly professional organisation and the preferred ski guiding company for guests who want to enjoy a safe and comfortable ski vacation in the Himalaya.

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FSH – Facts and Figures

FSH has enjoyed a constant growth over the past few years and we are happy to share some facts and figures about us in this blog:

  • Founded in 2005 by Chris Werren from Switzerland
  • 6 full time guides in Gulmarg
  • All guides have been trained according to the norms for “backcountry ski guiding” of swiss snowsports
  • All guides are officially registered in Kashmir and accredited by the Gulmarg Avalanche Center
  • Every guide has more than 500 days of work experience on the mountain
  • Over 800 program participants since the start of our activities in 2005/2006
  • Established transport service for airport transfers and tree skiing
  • Lodge type accommodation corresponding in most areas to western 3* hotel standard

 Program Participants

Ski Days

Nationality Mix

Many of you will soon start to plan their winter vacations and we hope that Gulmarg be included in your list of possible destinations. We are well prepared to accompany our guests from all over the world on their powder ski runs in Gulmarg and to assure that their freeriding trip to the Himalayas will become an unforgettable experience. For further information we are always at your disposal.

Website: www.gulmargsnowexperts.com

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