RunKeeper - student project

Project Milestone #1

  1. Existing Materials
  • Landing Page -

A personal trainer in your pocket. RunKeeper makes tracking your workouts fun, social, and easy to understand so that you can improve the quality of your fitness.

  • About Us -

RunKeeper is a mobile fitness platform with millions of users that enables runners and other fitness enthusiasts to track, measure, and improve their fitness. Though RunKeeper started out as a mobile fitness tracking app, we've expanded to include a vibrant online health & fitness community, and have integrated with over thirty devices, apps, and web services across a broad range of health categories to date. Hundreds of future integrations are in the works via RunKeeper's Health Graph API. Learn more about our business strategy here.
"Facebook of fitness" is only part of the story; we're building the glue to tie together disparate health and fitness systems across categories, and enable valuable services to be layered on top. Just as Facebook, Apple, and Google leveraged their core to emerge as the center of the ecosystems that they created, we plan to do the same.

  • Why We Love What We Do

As RunKeeper continues to evolve, we're committed to building an incredible team. We're a group of passionate, entrepreneurial self-starters dedicated to achieving RunKeeper's vision to become a hub for health and fitness data. As a member of the RunKeeper crew, you'll be comfortable in a fluid start-up environment and will bring an energetic and creative approach to your work. We're based in Boston and offer a competitive compensation package, including stock options for all employees. Come run with the pack!

  • Core Values
  1. Users Come First -The first question we should ask ourselves when evaluating any course of action is, how does it affect our users?
  2. Done is better than perfect - While we take great pride in our work and have a tendency to want things to be perfect, it is important to fight through that tendency, move quickly, and receive continuous feedback and learning as we go.
  3. Be relentless - We have a huge vision and lots of work in front of us, and there are a lot of people who doubt us and tell us it can't be done or that it can't be us. In order to make sure that it is and will be, each one of us needs to be relentless in all that we do.
  4. Stay humble - No matter how much success we achieve along the way, it is important that we stay humble and remember where we've come from.
  5. Work together - Smarts and hard work are important, but they are nothing if we don't work together as a team.
  6. Take risks - It is essential that we create an environment where it is OK to take risks.
  7. Trust is everything. - Trust takes years to establish and seconds to destroy, and this trust is paramount to all that we do.
  • Social Media profiles
  1. Facebook - RunKeeper helps you track, measure and improve your fitness!
  2. Twitter - Track, measure, and improve your fitness.
  3. Tumblr - RunKeeper is the personal trainer for your pocket. Track your running, walking or biking activities with our mobile app (iPhone and Android), or log in to the website to get further insight into how you're doing against yourself or your friends.
  • Announcements
  1. 2.8 Release

Note: This release is for iPhone only at the moment, Android is coming soon!
We’re pleased to announce that a big new release (iPhone version 2.8) is now live!  This one is particularly sweet, since it brings some long-requested features from many of you in the RunKeeper community.  We hope you enjoy it!
Here’s what’s new in this version:
Friends & Leaderboard
Now you can find your Facebook friends and phone contacts that are already RunKeeper users and invite new people to join—without leaving the app. In the spirit of healthy competition we also added a leaderboard, so you can see how you stack up against your friends each month. You can even *nudge* your not-so-active ones to go for a run, walk, or bike ride in order to give them a little extra motivation!   
‘Me’ tab
Sometimes your best competition is against yourself! With the ‘Me’ tab, it displays insights on your activity history and progress against your goals in one convenient place. It compares how you’ve been doing this week/month versus the one prior, and showcases personal bests that you’ve achieved while using RunKeeper.  Check it out, and keep tabs on how you’re doing over time!
Scheduled workouts
For those of you that need a little extra motivation, you can now schedule your next workout as you finish your last one!  This way you will get a notification on your phone when it is time to head out, to make sure you go through with it.  If you are following a RunKeeper training plan, you can also create automatic alerts for each workout in your plan, if you choose.

Try it out, and let us know what you think!  There is a whole lot more where this came from, we can’t wait to show you what’s next.

2. Constituencies

  • Current Users
  • Potential Users
  • Investors
  • Competitors
  • Press
  • Health Community: MDs, athletic trainers, policy makers
  • Potential hires
  • HealthGraph API partners
  • Local Boston community (universities, businesses, city/state government)

3. Touch Points

  • App Store description
  • Google Play description
  • Onboarding experience
  • Email alerts and newsletters
  • Push notifications
  • Fitness Feed
  • Instagram
  • HealthGraph partner blogs/announcements
  • Press Releases
  • Product Announcments
  • Business Development Outreach
  • Press Writeups
  • Recruiting and Hiring Practices
  • Race Participation
  • Conference Presence


Project Milestone #2

Various Audiences

  1. Investors
  2. Partners
  3. Users
  4. Media
  5. Employees
  6. Startup Community

Tough Questions

  1. How are you any different from a Nike or MapMyRun?
    1. We’re becoming much more than a running app, which the other two are. By providing the individual a health hub to collect and control their data, everyone can become a healthier individual
  2. Are you really a social fitness app?
    1. Yes, we recently added a Friends component to the mobile experience and were one of the first apps to allow for automatic Facebook and Twitter sharing of your activities. We’re also one of the first fitness partners to be working with Facebook’s new built-in actions. Along the same lines, we’ll be taking a closer look at the new Twitter Cards to deepen the RunKeeper-Twitter experience.
  3. It’s tough to tell which type of user or athlete you’re looking to attract. Who exactly is your target market?
    1. Not to oversimplify it, but anyone that wants to lead a healthy lifestyle. Just as Instagram makes you feel like a killer photographer, when none of us really are, we want everyone to feel like an athlete.
  4. Your app seems so focused on running. There really aren’t that many runners around. How do you move beyond that initial market?
    1. By focusing less on the “tracking” aspect of RunKeeper. We’ve got to provide the tools, whether they may be social, accountability and/or analytics, to motivate people to 1) think healthy and 2) be healthy.
  5. Why is RunKeeper the best place to work in Boston and in the health/fitness space?
    1. We care deeply about each and every employee’s overall development, from health to career trajectory. We’re attacking a huge market and obsess over the opportunity, both at the office and maybe at local bar or hiking trail.
  6. What does it really mean to have a personal trainer in your pocket?
    1. Well, what does a good personal trainer in the traditional sense do? Tells you where to start, provides instruction, develops a tailored plan, helps you with motivation and accountability, etc. We feel RunKeeper can do this, but multiplied by 100. Whereas the personal trainer could only really monitor you at the gym and occasionally through email/phone, your phone and all the many sensors has the ability to collect tons of useful health data. This, in turn, will tighten the feedback loop for you to make smarter, healthier decisions in your everday life.
  7. Does anyone really want a personal trainer in their pocket?
    1. People want value and convenience with all products, not just health/fitness. Typically, personal trainers cost hundreds of dollars per year, but we want to provide an even better experience for a fraction of the cost, maybe even free if we’re lucky :) Now, that is value to the customer. And, in terms of convenience, who doesn’t want more control and flexibility over their workout schedule, their nutrition and their lifestyle. More emphasis on personal, rather than trainer. The more data you provide and that RunKeeper collects, the more customized the experience.
  8. Can you really build a billion dollar consumer company in Boston, something that has never been done before?
    1. While the legacy of Boston tech is enterprise, we’ve got a ton of really smart, passionate people, looking to solve this big consumer problem: helping people become healthier. Boston’s been great for big healthcare and innovation, so, once we’re ready to go to the doctor and insurance route, we’ve got a ton of pilot opportunities to test the model. Lastly, Boston definitely knows how to scale businesses. We just need to replicate that on the consumer side. With the people we’ve brought on from Lycos, Zipcar and Zynga, we think we’ve got the infrastructure to take us there.
  9. How can you compete with Nike and their brand marketing machine?
    1. Nike is not a software company. They are an apparel company. We’re definitely aware of them, love what they’re doing, but we differentiate ourselves by obsessing over the user experience and building a stellar product. As for the branding question, we benefit greatly from the web and the many social interactions with our users. Ultimately, we’ll let our users tell our brand story, which is the most authentic and since narrative any company can tell.
  10. How are you going to make money?
    1. By not focusing on money! Yes it's counter-intuitive, but we’re focused on growth and engagement first, then revenue will come later. But when we do start focusing on money, we see these big, important partnerships being a possible revenue driver. It could be an apparel company wanting to know more about their customers workout habits and RunKeeper provides them that data. Or, it could be in partnership with a big insurance company, who wants more data on their patients exercise patterns? Build something really compelling first, as Facebook did, then start exploring a monetization strategy.



Chas Wagner
Community Manager at RunKeeper