Blog

The Fitness App Ecosystem in 2019: Specializing in Specialization

Posted by Lauren Pufpaf on Jun 7, 2019 3:56:47 PM

Since the iPhone’s launch in 2007, the world of fitness apps has steadily grown, with nearly 320,000 health and fitness apps in the app stores in 2018.

While the quantity of apps has swelled steadily, we have also seen massive growth in variety. While the original apps were lower touch (think MyFitnessPal) and only required engagement for a minute or two at a time, the normalization of extended screen time for video and audio on mobile devices combined with sophisticated user research has given way to a significant diversification in the offerings available within the fitness app universe.

Consumers have also become comfortable with the idea of optimizing their health through data as opposed to a one-size-fits-all “hit the treadmill” ideology. The proliferation of bespoke training regimens, measurement of biomarkers and the neatly packaged convenience of tracking ALL of this information on a device you already own has up leveled the status of an app. Health apps are now more akin to a daily partner in the pursuit of health.

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Topics: Fitness, Music for wellness

In-App Music Drives Engagement, Retention and ROI for Mobile Apps

Posted by Lauren Pufpaf on May 14, 2019 4:07:58 PM

App developers and marketers need to face the facts: it’s 2019, and users either love your app or they delete it.

In the digital fitness world, this really isn’t an exaggeration. 96% of fitness app users stick to just ONE fitness app. The rest fall by the wayside or are deleted outright.

To any app owner or marketer it quickly becomes apparent that improving retention is the best possible opportunity for improving the bottom line. There are a number of strategies commonly used - push notifications, faster in-app experiences, etc. These have diminishing returns, however, and app marketers are missing out on an entire form of engagement: sound. Specifically, implementing in-app music to drive up usage and loyalty.

We analyzed real engagement data from real apps, including a suite of leading fitness apps who have more than 400,000 user sessions a week. All in all, the results were eye-opening across all 4 major categories of app metrics:

  • Frequency of use
  • Session times
  • Conversion from Trial to Paid
  • Long-Term Retention (beyond 30 days)
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Topics: Fitness, Music for wellness

The 2 Yoga Music Mixes You Should Know About

Posted by Eric Stensvaag on Apr 23, 2019 2:35:08 PM
According to the National Institutes of Health’s 2017 NHIS, the popularity of yoga is growing dramatically, with 14.3 percent of U.S. adults practicing yoga in 2017 compared to 9.5 percent in 2012. Some of this growth can surely be attributed to the stressful political climate. Another contributing factor is the increased accessibility of yoga: practitioners can choose from a great variety of online/in-app classes in addition to those offered at yoga and fitness studios.
 
With more people making yoga part of their daily lives, it’s no longer a given that classes will be practiced in silence. There are plenty of silent yoga options for those who would choose only John Cage’s “4’33” for their mix, but many students find that music enhances their practice. A Google search for “yoga music” yields countless results, and tons of recommendations are also available on Spotify or your streaming service of choice.
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Topics: Music streaming, Music as a Service, legal music, Customer Engagment, Music as content, Fitness, Music for wellness

Music Licensing for Fitness

Posted by Lauren Pufpaf & Eric Stensvaag on Mar 21, 2019 1:03:21 PM
Feed.fm seamlessly integrates music into consumer experiences for a variety of fitness companies and brands. One of the most common questions we hear is, “What kind of licensing does my business need to legally use music?” In order to successfully answer this question, we need to get more specific about the different ways in which music is used to create fitness experiences.
 
1. Group Fitness Classes at a Physical Location
 
An example of this use case is a spin class at your local cycling studio. In order to legally play music in a physical location, the studio needs public performance licenses from four organizations: ASCAP, BMI, SESAC, and GMR. Additionally, the instructor should not be playing music directly from their personal music accounts.
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Topics: Music streaming, Music as a Service, legal music, retail music, Customer Engagment, Music as content, Fitness

Tips for Recording Crisp Workout Audio

Posted by Eric Stensvaag on Jan 25, 2019 1:42:15 PM

With more and more people migrating from the gym to digital fitness programs, there’s an impressive quantity, quality, and variety of fitness classes available on demand. As the fit tech boom continues, we’re frequently asked to provide input on both the legal side of music integration and the technical aspect of audio recording. The diagram below simplifies the decision process and summarizes the advice our Head of Curation (and Sound Engineer) typically shares.

Perhaps it’s intuitive that audio quality and music are as important as the image, lighting, and visual elements of your finished product. If not, here’s some advice from professional sports photographer and videographer David Bracetty, who makes a living based on how things look: “…I can’t recall a single comment on video quality, [but] I do recall commenting on sound and being able to hear, so get a good mic."

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Topics: Music as a Service, legal music, Fitness, Music for wellness

Music is Changing Behaviors & Re-Wiring Brains

Posted by Eric Stensvaag on Oct 18, 2018 3:08:27 PM

“Music is an important part of our physical and emotional well-being, ever since we were babies in our mother’s womb listening to her heartbeat and breathing rhythms.” -- Franz Wendtner, Clinical Psychologist, University (General) Hospital Salzburg

It’s an intuitive, increasingly acknowledged fact that music is a powerful motivational tool. Perhaps you play music in the morning to help you wake up, enlist the radio when driving to help stay focused and alert, or listen to music during your workouts. Over the past half-century, countless studies have shown the positive correlation between music and activities as diverse as exercise and shoppingMusic’s ability to help us perform better and “stick it out” is a behavioral result.

What’s lesser known: music can also deliver long-term physiological results, re-wiring our brains in a process known as neuroplasticity. Neuroscientists offer the following shorthand for this re-wiring phenomenon: “Neurons that fire together, wire together.” Research has shown music’s ability to increase neuroplasticity, and there are many innovative, music-powered solutions to age-old medical problems that affect all of us.

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Topics: Fitness, Music therapy, Music for wellness

Customer Spotlight: How MoveWith is Reshaping Personal Fitness

Posted by Eric Stensvaag on Apr 9, 2018 2:15:05 PM

In 2015, Holly Shelton left her career at Apple to start MoveWith, a digital fitness company that puts instructors front and center. A former ski racer, Shelton understands the motivational power of a great coach, and wanted to make it easier and cheaper for people to connect with the best fitness instructors working today. “For the MoveWith app to succeed, we knew it was essential to capture all the unique elements of our instructors’ classes, from verbal instructions to specific timing to custom music mixes,” says Shelton.

Feed.fm partnered with MoveWith to build out their music integration, handling all the licensing to ensure that Movers get the popular music they love and artists get paid. Our curation team worked closely with MoveWith and their instructors to create playlists that motivate across a wide variety of movement types—from treadmill to yoga.

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Topics: Apps, Feed.fm Blog, Music streaming, Music as a Service, legal music, Customer Engagment, Fitness

Crazy in Love: Fitness & Portable Music

Posted by Eric Stensvaag on Jan 22, 2018 1:31:37 PM

Happy 2018! Many of us have spent the first weeks of January focusing on our New Year’s resolutions. Fitness topped my list so I’m committed to exercising more regularly, which means keeping my bicycle oiled and pumped up, my portable Boombotix speaker charged, and my iPhone synced with a favorite cardio playlist.

I’m hardly alone in thinking about my exercise activity and the music that will keep me motivated. Fitness and music have a long and intertwined history, dating back to at least the ancient Olympic Games (8th Century BC). Fast-forward to the present, and lots of studies have demonstrated the positive correlation between exercise and music.

What’s notable for 2018 is that we’re in the midst of a health and wellness revolution. The wearables market is exploding, and many are taking advantage of the diverse fitness programs available through smartwatches and other portable devices.

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Topics: Feed.fm Blog, Music as a Service, Customer Engagment, Fitness

Tips for Developing a Strong Fitness Coaching App

Posted by Lauren Pufpaf & Eric Stensvaag on Dec 7, 2017 6:51:45 PM

It’s no secret that fitness apps have become a popular tool for anyone looking to stay in shape. For $5-10 a month, consumers can get personalized coaching, goal setting and the flexibility to work out anywhere. Compare this to the average $60 a month that U.S. consumers spend on a gym membership, and it’s clear that a high quality fitness app can provide significant value.

In 2017, the Health & Fitness app category jumped into the global Top 10 based on revenues (both for iOS and Android platform), according to App Annie. This category is highly dynamic, particularly as the global demand for wearables continues to explode. CCS Insight forecasts that 411 million smart wearables worth $34 billion will be sold in 2020. As entrepreneurs continue innovating in the Health & Fitness category, it makes sense to step back and evaluate the features that can make an app stand out in an increasingly crowded field.

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Topics: Feed.fm Blog, Music as a Service, Fitness