‘Without an app that delivers value to its users, you can’t stand up against the competition’: Interview with BetterMe CEO Viktoria Repa
In our modern world, there is an app for everything. A quick Google search will show you just how many crazy apps there are. While these might seem strange, these bizarre ideas are few and far between, to be found in the odd corners of the apps store. But for serious apps that want to improve your life and health, there are many competing for your attention, and this number is only going up. For example, statistics show that Fitness apps grew by 330% between 2014 and 2017.
In light of this, creating a successful fitness app in such a saturated market sounds like an almost impossible task. However, with the right skill set, offering and a lot of hard work it can be done. To get a better understanding of this market and what it takes to be successful, we spoke with Viktoria Repa the CEO of BetterMe, an app designed to help users achieve their personal wellness objectives by building and modifying their meal and workout plans.
What inspired you to create BetterMe?
We have conducted research on various needs of modern society. Surprisingly, at the moment almost 80% of illnesses are related to 2 issues: obesity and stress. In the US, half the population has some issue caused by at least one of these problems. This quote from Homo Deus a History of Tomorrow: “For the first time in history, more people die today from eating too much than from eating too little; And more people commit suicide than are killed by soldiers, terrorists and criminals combined” illustrates our statement perfectly. After that, there was no doubt for us that the next significant advancement in tech will be within the Health & Fitness niche. Through our apps portfolio, we help people all over the world to establish healthy workout routines and mindfulness practices.
I understand this is quite a busy space with many health and fitness apps on the market, yet BetterMe is #1-5 continuously in US AppStore H&F category. How have you managed to distinguish yourself in this market?
First of all – product. Without an app that delivers value to its users, you can’t stand up against the competition. Secondly, we interact with our audience on a daily basis. Social presence on Facebook and Instagram are great tools for that – we know our audience. And, by combining those 2 factors, we can run our marketing campaigns very smoothly and with quite promising results. Last but definitely not least – our team. At BetterMe we are always trying to increase our standards and processes. There is no magic pill that will guarantee success for your product, but by combining those factors that I’ve mentioned – you can be onto something.
Following on from your success in the US’ app store, are there other markets or countries you are hoping to tap into next?
Developed English-speaking countries are our top priority due to a high level of self-awareness in those communities and therefore a great interest in Health & Fitness topics. However, we are continually looking for new growth opportunities. China and the whole Asia region seems to be the most promising directions for mobile traffic growth. We already started our market research and launched preparations with various partners that operate there. We are going to launch new initiatives in that markets for our Android app version and will try to achieve sustainable iOS presence. Africa and the Middle East are also in our orbit due to a high potential of those areas in the next decade.
Can you give an example of an individual or case study that has benefited from BetterMe?
I believe that 30k comments of user feedback with an average rating of 4.4. speaks for itself. Also, millions of followers on our social platforms are highly engaged and responsive to our content. We have a vast customer support team that always helps our users with whatever inquiry they have.
In the previous month, we had more than 30 daily e-mails with different kinds of positive feedback, asking for advice on workout plans and meditation practices. Thousands of people benefit from our products and content on a regular basis.
Have you had any constructive feedback from customers, and if so what are they interested in seeing?
Of course, we have a ton of users feedbacks. It is our primary motivation and success criteria. With more than 30k app reviews on AppStore & Play market, we always up to date with our customers level of appreciation of our apps. We also run communities (3 million on FB & 370k Insta) that are related to health and overall well-being where we share insight and advice. You can see from the numbers, that this topic is relevant for a broad audience and we are in the right direction. Our analytics shows that our primary audience is women from developed countries that want to improve themselves both physically and mentally.
What is the primary focus for BetterMe over the next 6 months?
We at BetterMe want to improve our market niche. In July we have a huge announcement – a new app launch – BetterMe Yoga. Yoga will complete and advance our Workouts & Meditation app portfolio. We want to create harmony for the body, soul, and mind that our users can experience by using our applications. Thus, we will also update our existing apps with new content, programs, and overall features. At the moment we are also very interested in VR/AR technologies, they seem to be promising in Health&Fitness niche. In terms of marketing – our team wants to establish a strong presence in Asian markets, mainly in China. Moreover, of course, we will strive to achieve our mission – create happiness for our customers by providing them with the best products on the market. So stay tuned!