I would say that there is definitely a big disconnect between the client, the ad agency and the target in general. I feel like ski companies do their little bit of marketing research, but it just doesn't cut it for the agency, who then has to (as in most cases) go out and do their own research and uh-oh if this agency is far out of the ski community not only in understanding but geographically as well they aren't going to be able to dig up enough information. I imagine they also look through ski magazines, (putting them in this generic frame of mind) which is probably why ads keep going the same route.
That and I feel like most ads are all grouped as "awareness" ads (or at least they all come off that way) which constricts the creative minds from trying to do something awesome. Although it is all about sales and in this industry if it isn't "new" no one really seems to want to hear about it.