Strava Challenges: Tracking Brand Impact

Each quarter, we work alongside independent consultancy Multisport Research to assess how brands are perceived on Strava. Here are the findings that emerged from the end of 2020.

Challenges on Strava motivate athletes around the world to pursue a singular goal. In 2020, the number of athletes joining challenges more than doubled 2019's figures from March-August. This has led to an increase in the number of challenge impressions, and a 9% increase in the proportion of Strava users who have come across partner brands between 2019 and 2020.

“Our research shows that partner brands are seen as increasingly relevant and positive by Strava users.”

Gary Roethenbaugh, Managing director, multisport research

Across the 2020 editions of the survey conducted to date, 29,254 Strava athlete responses were gathered, spanning eight key markets. By conducting multiple surveys throughout the year, each with a huge number of athletes responding, we’re able to understand how brand activations shift recall, purchase intent and ownership. Quarter-on-quarter data reveals retained positive sentiment of partner brands among athletes.

A key survey takeaway is the correlation between Strava Challenges and brand recall. Brands that conducted Strava Challenges in 2020 saw much higher brand recall than brands that didn’t. Two significant statistics jump out:

- Brands that conducted a single challenge in 2020 had a brand recall 84% higher than brands that conducted none.

- In Q3 2020, brands that built their momentum with two or three challenges over the year experienced 194% greater brand recall than all other brands tracked on Strava.


In addition to brand recall, Strava Challenges are likely to translate into strong intent to purchase. They’re shown to generate a higher proportion of athletes who would ‘definitely buy from a brand in the future’. Companies that conducted just one challenge in 2020 were 13% more likely to have athletes ‘definitely buy’ from their brand, and that number rose to 17% for brands that conducted two or more. 

We also see that Strava Challenges help to foster real-world brand ownership. Those brands with repeated challenges are 11% more likely to be currently owned by a Strava athlete. 

The Strava experience for athletes is amplified by engagement through challenges – and increasingly so. The level of interest in Strava Challenges has notably risen over the last few years. On average, between 2019 and 2020, there is a 32% increase in those who are ‘very interested’ or ‘interested’ in content from partner brands on Strava. Alongside an increase in overall reach, partner brands that conduct challenges are enjoying higher brand recall and stronger intent to purchase, and are more likely to be owned by athletes on Strava.

All data in this report covers Q1-Q3 2020 (Jan 1 to Sep 30, 2020)

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