Interview with Karsten Schulz: Digitization in the endurance sector
June 25, 2018 |
by Olga Baginski
Hey Karsten, we are glad that you have time for this interview. You have already made a name for yourself in the Endurance industry with the enduu brand. Now you have also realized the idea of a finisher board. Tell us a little bit about your products and the reasons for realizing and distributing these products.
Right, we have two products that are aimed at the same target group but are very different from the basic idea.
Since 2013 I have been marketing our main product enduu basic, a 25ml drinking ampoule, a low-carb endurance booster with amino acids, minerals, trace elements and of course caffeine. Supplementary products such as bars, iso and proteins were successively added.
In spring 2017 I saw several selfmade medal holders at Pinterest and thought to myself, this fits well to my target group and we could go into production with a FinisherBoard.
Until last year you were still working as a sales employee in a medium-sized company, and very successfully. Nevertheless, you have decided to concentrate on your own company. What were your motives?
After 17 years in the IT and consulting industry, I needed a break; I have been concentrating on my own business for a year now. Out of my part-time work, I dared to try to take my entrepreneurial life to the next level.
In addition, you are an enthusiastic runner yourself. Besides the company, this is also a time-consuming activity. How may I imagine a typical day of yours?
As a self-employed person you always and never have time. I have a 7-day week, at the same time I can largely determine my daily work routine myself. My online shop is always open, 24/7 😉
I train 4-6 hours a week on average: 2 hours running, 2-3 hours cycling (only when it’s warm) and one hour swimming. In preparation for a longer triathlon or a marathon it can take up to 10 hours, but this doesn’t happen that often.
My day begins with the dispatch processing of the previous day, then comes the stock control, purchasing and disposition. In the following I look at the current marketing figures (Facebook, AdWords) and the conversions of the current ads. Newsletters and campaigns are planned and implemented. Oh, and there’s also accounting…
Let us come back again briefly to your products and your business. I am sure many of our readers are interested in how you approach and address the target group. Maybe you can also briefly describe here how your target group looks exactly.
My target group are endurance athletes aged between 25 and 55 years. In the area of sports nutrition, the market is highly competitive and very price-sensitive. We acquired the trademark rights for the FinisherBoard and have meanwhile achieved a very good Google ranking.
Today we reach the target group in four areas:
- Targeting on Facebook and Instagram
- AdWords (FinisherBoard, medal holder, etc.)
- Ads at news portals in the field of running and triathlon
- event sponsorships
A few weeks ago you used eventbaxx as a medium for a marathon by participating with a coupon. Would you say that the digital Goodie Bag is a channel you would use more often and what was the outcome for you?
At the same time, the digital goodie bag complements our’digital marketing mix’. It was a win-win-win situation. Win for the athlete because he receives relevant products; Win for the organizer because he partly subsidizes his investment in the technology through the sponsor couponing and finally Win for us because we were able to record enormously high click rates. At the same time, we achieved a comparatively high conversion rate (direct sales).
If we get the chance in the future, more coupons will offer, no question!
What is your general view of digitization in the endurance industry?
I see the development very positively. Maybe there will be a digital start number sometime -) which you can simply reuse independently of the event, like a timing chip, who knows 😉
Seriously, especially big organizers are already well organized and use digital media, starting with the registration procedure, communication, certificates, results, etc.. eventbaxx fits perfectly into the overall process and the athlete gets a real added value. In order to reach the maximum participant limits in the future, the athlete has to focus even more, compare with a customer, so that he will return next year! eventbaxx offers the perfect platform and brings organizers together with potential sponsors.