How Spartan Raised Awareness And Drove Sales With Adgo



One of the world’s leading obstacle course races—with successful operations in North America, Europe and beyond—launched its brand in Southeast Asia in 2016. It needed to generate brand awareness in the region before driving sign-ups to its inaugural races, delivering a full end-to-end customer journey. Adgo’s AI powered system deployed and managed multiple brand awareness campaigns to effectively break into the new market before delivering leads and sales in a multi-stage campaign.

The Company


Spartan hosts the world’s leading obstacle course races, challenging participants to push their mind and body to the limit. The Spartan brand encompasses a sport, community, philosophy, training and nutrition program—with daily advice, podcasts, series of books, activities for kids, workout gear, an NBC Sports series and digital magazine. In 2016 Spartan Race launched its brand across Southeast Asia.

The Goal


Already established as one of the leading obstacle course races worldwide, the objective for Spartan was to replicate the current success of the brand globally and launch in Southeast Asia. Spartan was specifically looking to raise brand awareness in Thailand, Indonesia, Philippines, Taiwan and Hong Kong before launching races in those markets.

“One of the top challenges facing marketers is always raising brand awareness. Combining this with launching in multiple new markets presents a unique obstacle—one which Adgo was excited to take on. Using our algorithm-based optimization system we were able to quickly zero in on responsive targets and help Spartan tell its compelling story to a new audience.”
— Michael Kim, CEO, Adgorithmics Inc

The Challenge


Spartan needed to get its brand in front of a targeted group of potential customers while having no prior customer data for the region to work with. In order to succeed they needed to test multiple messages with multiple target groups to quickly find what resonated with potential racers in the region. Spartan then needed to educate its audience about Obstacle Course Racing and turn this engagement into race day sales.

The Solution


Spartan raised awareness of its brand by using Adgo to deploy Page Like and Video campaigns, quickly pulling potential racers into its content distribution channels to become immersed in the Spartan experience. Adgo then used data from this stage of the campaign to power the second-phase of the program to drive qualified leads, which would later be used to underpin Spartan’s conversion campaigns and drive race sign-ups.

Adgo enabled Spartan to easily A/B test different demographics and ad creative at scale. Combined with Adgo’s Creative Selection Algorithm this gave the company greater insight into the messaging that worked best for its target audience in this new market.

Adgo’s Bid Management Algorithm automatically performed daily bid and budget reallocations to target best performing audience segments based on multiple optimization goals. This ensured that while focussing spend on audiences that convert lower down the funnel, each stage of the customer journey had a sufficient flow of prospects entering.

This not only enabled Spartan to maximize its results with minimal experience and time, but helped it keep its cost per lead under target for the entire duration of the campaign.

The Result


Using the Adgo platform Spartan was able to successfully break into a new market and greatly raise its brand awareness across the region with limited resources:

  • 3x increase in fans compared to budgeted target
  • 50% decrease in cost per lead vs non-Adgo campaigns
  • 90% reduction in workload on a campaign basis
“Adgo has been pivotal to Spartan Race’s success in new markets. The ability to develop and test various targeting groups for each new region has allowed Spartan to source new leads at cost, and approach possible franchisees in new countries. Spartan has also freed up assets for other tasks, knowing that Adgo can handle the campaign launch and manage the campaign lifecycle.”
— Victoria Cunningham, Director of Marketing & PR, APAC, Spartan Race