Sport Heroes supports and motivates more than 2 million users worldwide. Made up of 90 sports & wellness enthusiasts, the entire team is convinced of the benefits of being active on a daily basis—and they want to pass on these values to as many people as possible.
Founded in 2014, the startup has established itself as a key player in the field of wellness, dedicated to connecting and rewarding active people. With a focus on engagement and community, Sport Heroes offers its product to all types of organizations to engage communities of customers, employees, or fans. The startup is also focused on developing its own consumer communities with Running Heroes, Cycling Heroes and Swimming Heroes.
These communities now reach over two million users and continue to be a major focus for Sport Heroes.
Sports Heroes had three primary goals as it geared up to adopt a product analytics solution in 2019:
- Maintain accurate and accessible product metrics to measure success and engage users.
- Get feedback and usage insights to determine which features to add to the roadmap.
- Provide data insights to the Customer Success team and easy-to-use dashboards to corporate customers.
First, as a product entirely focused on getting people to be more active, Sport Heroes looks at both engagement on the app (as a kind of leading indicator) and how physically active its users are (as the main lagging indicator).
The team needed an effective way to measure both major questions, including:
- User engagement, retention rate, and monthly active users for tracking product engagement.
- Average physical activity per user and average duration or distance for tracking physical activity.
Another primary goal is to use the answers to these questions to guide the product roadmap. “We want the product to be as engaging and as sticky as possible, so we measure disengagement every month,” says Lucas Bréchot, Data Analyst at Sport Heroes. “In order to do this, we need to understand which features drive the most engagement. When we launch a new feature, we need to assess the impact on user engagement.”
Finally, Lucas and the technical team needed to be able to provide analytical insights to both the Customer Support Manager (CSM) team and corporate customers looking to grow their own micro community of active employees.
“The goal of the CSM team is really to manage as much monthly recurring revenue as possible,” Lucas says. “A CSM needs to have as many clients as possible, and in order to have as many clients as possible, they need to reduce time spent on reporting. They don’t have time to dig through the data.” The team also needed to be able to automatically create public dashboards to give to customers without CSMs having to do anything at all.
Through all three of these goals, Lucas and the technical team wanted to simplify data analytics for the company instead of overcomplicating it.
Lucas Bréchot Data Analyst, Sport Heroes
“Sport Heroes strives to cultivate a lean data philosophy. We prefer having few metrics that are highly effective and actionable over having a wide array of indicators that tell convoluted and often paralyzing stories. We constantly aim to refine our metrics to summarize our key goals as a company.”
Sport Heroes adopted Mixpanel in 2019, after accelerating business growth by bringing on an increasing number of corporate clients.
With more corporate clients came the need for more reporting. “There were increasing demands to extract data from our backend to provide new clients with extensive reporting and for our product team to analyze our product performance,” says Lucas. “Our setup at the time (based on a MongoDB database) didn’t allow CSMs and product managers the flexibility to measure and refine key product indicators.”
Sport Heroes chose Mixpanel over other product analytics tools because it was better suited to their stage of development: it was simple to use, aesthetic and cost effective. Now, Mixpanel is the company’s main BI tool for both reporting and product analytics.
“Mixpanel is used as an event tracker, allowing teams to track key product events without having to store the events in our data warehouse,” says Lucas. “Mixpanel offers an opportunity for teams to more easily manipulate the data collected at Sport Heroes. From cohorts and funnels to retention rates, the product removes the need to create complex spreadsheets based on manual exports from our internal tools.”
With this simultaneously accessible and in-depth product analytics, Sport Heroes can now give better support to CSMs and corporate customers and drive better engagement and feedback loops with users.
Better support for CSMs
Before Mixpanel, the Sport Heroes team had to manually export data from the backend into Excel for the CSM team and corporate customers.
“It was just seeing if the numbers that the clients wanted were good or bad,” says Lucas. “It wasn’t very precise.”
Now, Mixpanel enables the CSM team to create client facing, automatically updated reports, saving valuable time for support reps. “CSMs goal is to provide value for the clients without spending too much time,” Lucas tells us. “They need dashboards that are readily available and constantly updated—a dashboard they can easily share with clients.”
Lucas and the technical team got proactive with giving the CSM even more guidance: to take the fear out of the new tool, they created an extensive Google Sheet to detail every event and property that the database sends to Mixpanel. They also try to automate as much as possible for CSMs, like using scripts to take the data out of Mixpanel and feed it directly into the CRM and tools like ChurnZero.
That gives the team everything they need for timely engagement, right at their fingertips.
Engaging and understanding users in a deeper way
Sport Heroes uses Mixpanel in conjunction with Braze to send emails and push notifications to users. To optimize engagement, they send dynamic cohorts to Braze from Mixpanel based on in-app behavior: connecting a sports tracking app, entering a challenge, or even just their level of activity.
These personalized touchpoints keep people engaged and get them back in the app.
But product analytics isn’t just about engaging users at the right time—it’s also about understanding them in a deeper way.
Mixpanel allowed the team to understand the cohorts of users that are less or more engaged, understand which features each cohort uses and then go talk with those users to understand why their behavior differed.
These conversations, in turn, gave indicators for which features to revisit, which to retire and which new features to add to the roadmap.
With the help of Mixpanel, the Sport Heroes team improved their onboarding experience, increasing the percentage of users that successfully reached a value moment by 20%. The team also optimized content and the timing of animation levers (like a sport challenge) to both increase expertise and support sales. Finally, the team has been able to prioritize features within the roadmap based on the stickiness and usage insights of certain types of features.
Without Mixpanel, the alternative would have to be either tracking and storing product events in their data warehouse, coding another solution to present results to clients, or training all employees to query MongoDB.
Now, the Sport Heroes team (including customer-facing employees) can easily follow the metrics they need to take action and make informed decisions.