Have you ever wanted to run a race, but the start time or location was less than ideal?
I ran in virtual running events hosted by Gametiime in the past and I have been a part of their online community ever since. When the opportunity arose to be a part of a new, online community to empower and inspire people to be healthy and active, I jumped at the opportunity. The new FitFam virtual event platform was launched 10/10/15! With this being said, I am excited to announce that I have been selected as a part of the FitFam Ambassador team for 2016!
This is a great opportunity to empower people to live a more healthy and active lifestyle – the mission of FitFam!
FitFam launches virtual event platform, to help people be healthy and active
FitFam, a Seattle-based startup building an online, turnkey platform for brands to host engaging virtual events. The service will officially launch on 11/10/15. People will be able to sign up for FitFam’s first official event, the FitFam Challenge, and brands can learn more about how to host an event of their own.
FitFam creates and hosts virtual event experiences that inspire people — of all ages and athletic abilities — to live healthy and active. Participants commit to a fitness goal, connect with hundreds of others in a nationwide online community, get exclusive event merchandise, win awards and prizes, and benefit worthy causes.
In addition, FitFam virtual events allow brands to build brand loyalty through a unique experience, and increase their customer reach and engagement by empowering their fans to become vocal and passionate brand ambassadors.
WHAT MAKES A VIRTUAL EVENT UNIQUE
A virtual event is like your local 5K or marathon, but much more flexible — participants can do on the event on their own time, with a gathering of friends or solo, and at a location of their choice.
Put another way, it’s a fun and easy, low-stress way to participate in a race — not having to be at a specific location at 7am, while also connecting participants in a supportive, nationwide event community.
The experience has been popular with solo runners, friends, families (including kids and dogs!), and organizational groups alike — proving to be a great way to get together, get out the door, and be active.
HOW A VIRTUAL EVENT WORKS
Participants pay around $35 to register for a themed, fitness-related virtual event — often related to a fun holiday, pop culture favorite, and/or marketing campaign associated with a partner brand.
With this registration, participants get:
- invited to a participant-only website and social media community, where they can learn about and meet fellow participants nationwide
- exclusive swag in the mail to recognize their efforts and remember the experience
- the chance to win awards and prizes through photo contests and merit-based categories (e.g. fastest 5K finisher)
- lots of “feel-goods”, knowing they: committed to and accomplished a goal, were part of a supportive and encouraging community of go-getters, and contributed to benefitting an non-profit cause related to the event’s theme.
Once the event weekend arrives, participants complete their activity (e.g. running, walking, or biking), submit their results online — verified by their tracking app data — and share their experience through photos and videos on social media.
Photo contest and merit-based award winners are also selected, winning prizes in the mail on top of merchandise given to all event participants.
FitFam works closely with organizations to design and execute a virtual event from start to finish, providing insightful guidance along the way and a thorough post-event summary about the event community.
Partner companies pay a per-event setup fee to initiate the project, then receive a split of registration and sponsorship dollars (if applicable) at the conclusion of the event.
And, lastly, FitFam and its partners make a collective donation with proceeds to a theme-related cause.
BACKGROUND ON FITFAM
THE MISSION AND SLOGAN
FitFam’s mission is, “To empower people to live a more healthy and active lifestyle.”
FitFam’s slogan is, “Achieve your impossible.”
The name FitFam is a combination of the words “fitness” and (global) “family”. It’s an inspiring, inclusive community of people helping one another improve one day at a time, with running and fitness as a vehicle.
THE “LIGHTBULB” IDEA
The idea of FitFam came when, after building and running Gametiime, Jon and Don kept asking themselves, “What would be a better way to help people to be healthy and active, and create an innovative win-win for customers and brands alike?” After talking with a number of existing users and companies, they landed on the idea of hosting their own virtual event in early 2015.
After hosting their first four pilot events and receiving stellar feedback from participants, it was clear the opportunity was worth pursuing further. Additionally, they discovered that brands in the market were seeking new ways to engage with existing customers and find new ones. Similarly great feedback from brands validated the offering as an unique and valuable brand marketing tool.
The FitFam logo is simple — but also meaningful and powerful.
- Interlocking Fs represent the unity that forms the foundation of the FitFam community. It’s never leaving a runner behind. It’s sharing actionable tips to that person who says “I could never do this” and sticking with them. It’s high-fiving a stranger after they pushed you to your latest personal record.
- The angle of the (first) F is upward because FitFam’s journey is one of progress and continuous improvement. The FitFam logo does not waver from being better, and looks optimistically forward to the future.
- Turquoise, marigold, and indigo. These are not your typical blue, gray, and black tones. They are remarkable colors to represent a remarkable community, company, and mission.
- And the turquoise outer ring? It represents a finisher medal. Participants deserve to celebrate their fitness journey because, every day, they are stepping out the door, facing their fears and challenges, and striving to achieve their impossible.
PRIOR TO LAUNCH
Before officially launching FitFam, what is now the FitFam team partnered with more than 10 brands to host over 2,000 participants and donate more than $5,000 to non-profit organizations, including: Girls on the Run, Northwest Boxer Rescue, and IGNITEworldwide. Participant feedback from these events has been excellent, with hundreds of participants giving top-notch ratings for their overall experience, likeliness to be repeat participants, and likeliness to share future events with friends.
Before launching FitFam, Co-Founders Jon Tam and Don Le created Gametiime, a social discovery tool for running races, which has listed 130,000 events to date, while peaking at 100,000 monthly unique visitors. The Gametiime offering (as users previous knew it) continues to be part of the FitFam offering.
WHAT OTHERS ARE SAYING
“Working with FitFam was a great collaborative experience! They brought a lot of enthusiasm and great ideas to our event planning process, while paying careful attention to keeping our goals and company spirit present throughout the event. As the event progressed, the FitFam team was always quick to respond to our inquiries and needs, as well as provide creative solutions to any changes we wanted to make. Our participants were thrilled with the event and it truly helped us to create a whole new type of brand experience for them. The most constructive feedback our participants provided is that they wished they had invited more friends to complete the virtual race with them!”
Brian Fisher, Sponsorship Marketing Manager, Nuun Hydration
“FitFam is exactly the kind of company you want to partner with. Not only are they dependable, efficient, communicative, and results-oriented, but they are also team-players. Partnering with FitFam means becoming part of their team. They make an effort to support and promote their partnerships, because that’s the kind of people they are. They did a great job of promoting our brand through effective posts on Instagram, Facebook, and newsletters. They have great reach in social media, and excellent rapport with their customers. I watched them brilliantly handle unexpected obstacles in a way that proved that their customers and participants truly do come first. FitFam does not only get the job, but gets it done right — building brand trust through creating relationships with partners and customers alike.”
Kathryn Porter, Founder, Skybake Deliveries
BACKGROUND ON THE TEAM
FitFam is a Seattle-based startup co-founded by Jon Tam and Don Le, two longtime best friends who connected through their shared passions for technology, community, and the sports and fitness world, and pushing each other to live their own healthy and active lifestyle. Prior to launching Fitfam:
- Jon served clients including Microsoft, Amazon, Nike, Starbucks, AOL, and Blue Nile as Senior Consultant at Deloitte. As a Practice Director at Teleion Consulting, he helped the company get recognized in Inc. Magazine’s 1000 “Fastest Growing Private Companies in the US” with 367% 3-year revenue growth. He studied Information Systems and Marketing at the University of Washington.
- Don served as a full-stack Software Developer and Technical Program Manager on multiple teams at Amazon, including Social Apps and Wish List. He built Amazon’s first social applications on Facebook and LinkedIn, and led his Wish List tech team in global product launches. Don studied Computer Engineering at the University of Washington.
CALLS TO ACTION
As a participant: Visit http://fitfam.com sign up for the FitFam Challenge, which will officially take place on January 15th, 2016. It is just the first of many FitFam virtual events to come! The price is roughly $35 (registration fees included) and participants will receive:
- cotton/poly blend shirts
- finisher medals
- bib numbers
- lightweight running / cycling belts
As a brand: To host your own virtual event to engage with existing and new customers, visit http://fitfam.com/host or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org. FitFam provides an end-to-end solution (including technology, operations, vendor management, and customer support), so brands need no prior event hosting knowledge to design and execute a great virtual event experience of their own.
LOGO, PHOTOS, AND OTHER MEDIA
Find them here: goo.gl/pNeRTA
SOCIAL MEDIA INFO
- Twitter: https://twitter.com/fitfam_com
- Facebook: https://facebook.com/fitfamhq
- Instagram: https://instagram.com/fitfamhq