This weekend Florida was visited by a couple of national triathlon series; TriRock and Rev3. Both were on Florida’s Gulf Coast, TriRock took place in Clearwater and Rev3 a little bit further south in Venice.After experiencing lackluster participation numbers at this year’s Great Floridian Triathlon, I was anxious to see what the participation numbers were for those national series events. I knew both of them were hurting for participants because of the number of promotional emails with discount codes that were being distributed in the final weeks leading up to race day. In the case of TriRock, promotional emails with discount codes were even being sent out race week. I received one just a couple of days prior to the race.
A quick glance at each respective race’s results tonight show that Rev3 had less than 500 finishers (all events combined), and TriRock had less than 700 finishers between the sprint and international distance races combined. While a local race may be happy with those participation numbers, they are not impressive for a national series. In fact I would say that the numbers are downright embarrassing for TriRock as that series is owned by the Competitor Group. The Competitor Group gives that series more marketing clout than perhaps any triathlon series on the planet.
In retrospect, the GFT’s participation numbers may not be that bad when you compare them to Rev3. The 2013 GFT had a terrible website, confusing branding between the various events, and very little dedicated marketing focused solely on the GFT.
My goal is to turn that around in 2014 with a goal of at least a 50% increase in participation next year. Do you think it is possible?