Inc. – How a Marathon Business Keeps Its Customers Happy | Inc.com

Want to own your industry? Don’t think vertical integration; think participant continuum.

Participant what? I know, that’s what I thought. But stick with me–this is a cool business strategy.

Here’s another in my series in which I pick a topic and connect with someone a lot smarter than me. (Check out some previous installments at the end of the article.)

This time I talked to Scott Dickey, the CEO of Competitor Group, a privately-held sports marketing and management group that owns and operates running, cycling, and triathlon events (including the Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon series) and magazines like Triathlete, VeloNews and Competitor. (Disclosure: I subscribe to VeloNews.)

From the outside looking in, you’ve created “synergy” (dislike the word but in this case it fits) between your various lines of business.
The events and the magazines/websites definitely feed off each other. We look at it as an ecosystem. We’re in the business of participant-based sports, not fan-based, so we see it as a participant continuum.

More of the Inc.com post from Jeff Haden

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