When the economy looks down, entrepreneurs look up. Check out our series on innovating during a crisis.

Strava Finds its Niche

Mark Gainey, Strava

Strava executive chairman Mark Gainey and his co-founder Mike Horvath came up with the idea for Stava in the mid-1990s, but weren’t able to make their vision a reality until 2009, when mobile and GPS technology reached an inflection point. In the meantime, they built Kana Communications into a business that earned a valuation of more than $10 billion. When they returned to the “virtual lockerroom” idea that became Strava, they made a crucial decision: They would focus their go-to-market strategy on passionate road cyclists, and build a fierce loyalty with that group before expanding to other sports categories. Gainey explains four core aspect of Strava’s “inch wide, mile deep” approach to engaging early customers.