Runtastic, an Austrian company that’s developed more than 20 apps in 18 languages for endurance, health and fitness activities, launched a new iOS and Android app in mid-November call the Runtastic Results app.
In the first two weeks of the app being live, it has garnered between half a million and one million downloads, says Stephanie Peterson, Runtastic’s vice president of marketing. “The Results app had the strongest first two weeks that we’ve ever had in terms of downloads and people registering,” she says.
The Results app puts its users through a 12-week workout program and guides them with demonstration videos showing how to do the exercises. The app also contains a health and nutrition center for guidance and tips on healthy eating.
“If you really want a six pack, working out is half of the equation; you need to have a healthy diet,” Peterson says.
Runtastic created the Results app as a way to bring the style of workout videos and DVDs into the mobile realm, Peterson says. Having the videos available on a smartphone allows consumers to keep up with their workouts even if they are traveling or away from their home, Peterson says. With the app consumers can bring workouts with them on the road, she says.
In August, sportswear retailer Adidas, No. 257 in Internet Retailer’s 2016 Mobile 500 Guide, acquired Runtastic for $241 million.
Runtastic started working on the app in-house at the end of 2014. By February 2015, the app was pretty much done, but Runtastic wanted to test it more before releasing it to the public. Runtastic opened the app up to its employees and their family members, and about 300 people went through the whole 12-week plan between February and June. They were required to give daily feedback about the workouts and recipes. . That feedback helped Runtastic improve the app before introducing it.
For example, if testers said a particular exercise was too challenging, Runtastic would reduce the number of repetitions or make other modifications. Peterson, for example, found some of the strength exercises too challenging, as she doesn’t have a lot of upper body strength. Now, the Results app will offer an alternative exercise if a user can’t do what is suggested, such as push-ups while on your knees instead of regular push-ups.
Having 300 people go through the program before it went live also gave Runtastic a pool of people to give testimonials, write blog posts to run alongside the workouts and share success stories.
“When you look at the landing page, these are true Runtastic employees that are living proof that the app worked,” Peterson says.
The company also launched this app in a new way, Peterson says. Other Runtastic apps, she says, were put together and launched “quick and dirty.”
“When you are a supper-young start up with five employees with no money in the books, you don’t have millions of dollars or euros,” Peterson says. Runtastic in part took more time to get this app right before launch because it’s more complex than others it offers. Plus, Peterson says, “We’re a bigger company now with more resources so we’re able to take a bit more time and bit a more resources into making the product stronger from day one.”
Runtastic is planning a marketing push in January to build on the momentum of consumers’ New Year’s resolutions, which often focus on losing weight and getting into better shape. Part of that push is doing a major update with new content in the app, such as new exercise plans, workout videos and results stories.
Runtastic makes its money from in-app upgrades or pay-to-download apps, which can range from 99 cents to $4.99; premium access to the Runtastic website for more content and training plans, which can range from $39 to $49 per year or $9.44 per month; one-time trainings plans, which can be $20 to $25, hardware sales of its Runtastic wearable device; and some business-to business deals, Peterson says.
Runtastic apps have accumulated 140 million downloads and 70 million registered users.
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