Health & fitness apps: How the Start-Up xendera found a niche and conquered the market

One look in your app store, an online mag or social media: Wherever you go, you won’t be able to NOT notice them. Health and Fitness Apps - they are booming. The promise of training any time, tracking your results and sharing them - just the presentable ones, of course - are a recipe for success. They are a tool to get people motivated to stay or become fit and healthy.Most of them share the same ingredients: Choose one sport (running, functional training, yoga), combine it with possible tracks / workouts and reward people’s endurance and improvement. Nowadays, the top opponent’s prove their standing: runtastic, now owned by adidas, Freeletics, MyFitnessPal and MapMyRun both owned by under armor - just to name a few. With these leaders and a big amount of new apps coming through every day, there’s seldomnly a remarkable innovation in between.One of the exceptions is the french App xendera.Launched in April 2016, it finally reached the number 1 position of downloads in the Health Category in France on the 10th of July 2017. Even in a market which is overrun by fitness apps of any kind, xendera found a niche to conquer it. 
Their goal to get people moving is similar, the difference is their concept though. Instead of creating a community which motivates each other, xendera uses real rewards for fitness achievements. So how is it working?

The concept of Xendera

To make long story short: xendera’s unique model rewards various workouts with vouchers. Partnering with brands from the health & sports sector, the users receive a coupon for their favorite products. For this, they just need to track their activities over some time (you'll see why it might need more than one workout in our example). 
In advance, users choose their favorite brands. This way, when successfully achieving a fitness milestone, they only receive rewards they really like.So, what exactly do you need to do to achieve an coupon? We take Skullcandy as an example: To earn a 25% discount on the whole online shop, a user needs to run 25km in total. This might take some time, depending on your level of fitness, but it's a nice way to spice up your workout with an extra goal over the week or month.
„Our mission is to promote impactful fitness, aggregate health data and provide the best technology platform to integrate active lifestyles with conscious consumer behavior. Thus providing a truly unique experience at the intersections of life and fitness.“
Furthermore, the app can be combined with other fitness apps and a tracking device - like an add-on, so users can still workout with their regular training sessions. Their partnership with brands and other apps is probably one reason for their popularity. Instead of developing a complete new system, they use the existing ones and improve them - a strategy for successful start-ups in every sector.

Become one of the team and help xendera level-up

It's no suprise that a growing business has a growing team. That’s why, xendera offers 4 job vacancies for their headquarter in Biarritz, France Still, working at xendera means working in a small and passionate team which all support the expansion of the app. Sitting around and waiting for the clock to pass until you go home is not an option, you will need a hands-on mentality and be motivated to improve xendera every day. Sounds exactly like your way of working? Then check these 4 exciting career opportunities:
  • B2B Business Developper for Germany and the UK Evolving xendera by developing further cooperations with other brands - that’s what an B2B Business Developer is responsible for. xendera is looking for two confident team members with strong motivation to help xendera grow even more. If you are interested, they are hiring one B2B Business Developer for Germany and one specialist for the UK. By the way, what we liked best about the job offer was probably this hint at the end of it: "Secret talents accepted" - Show them what you got!
  • Growth Hacker Ever heard of a Growth Hacker? For us at Sportyjob, this was the first time. You’d probably expect an IT job here, truth is though, a Growth Hacker is a Marketing Specialist. Use the different Marketing Channels to help xendera grow. Your main tasks surround Content Marketing, by creating blogs, press releases and more to push the app. We’d take the job straight away for the title!
  • Traineeship: Community Management / Brand Content This offer concerns all students who want to get insights by getting active, not only by watching. It’s your chance to gain experience in an exciting start-up atmosphere and help a young company by growing. As a Trainee in Community Management & Brand Content in a small team, you’ll be responsible from day one for your own projects and tasks in the community management of xendera. A hands-on mentality and a lot of curiosity are definitely needed.

Timberland: Going beyond the border of Sustainability & Responsibility

Timberland is an outdoor brand, one of the most well-known worldwide to say the least. One of the reason, apart from quality products, is their serious commitment for environmental and social causes. Right now, Timberland is looking for a Sustainability and Responsibility Manager, a moment for us to take a look into their S&R agenda. So how exactly does Timberland improve their three main pillars outdoors, product and community? How do they go beyond the borders of regular engagement?

The long-term plan: Timberland’s 2020 agenda

Already years ao, the company changed their production to be more sustainable, making a statement towards treating the environment with respect. In 2016, when launching their responsibility website, Timberland also announced further steps in improving their strategy. The sports brand set ambitious goals until 2020 regarding their products and the environment:
  • All of the used cotton for their apparal collections are supposed to come from US-american eco-friendly cultivation,
  • Every procued shoe shall contain recycled, organic or renewable (ROR) materials
  • All products shal be PVC and PFC free
  • Timberland wants to reduce their energy consumption by 10% in total and obtain 50% by regenerative energy sources
  • Plant 10 million trees

Social engagement: A focus on community work

Of course, social responsibility has kind of become courteous in worldwide industries, after scandals of brands capitalizing workers in third world countries. It’s obvious that claiming to aim for responsibility, Timberland of course helps raising awareness and supports save working environments by collaborating mostly with fair suppliers. What makes the difference though, is Timberland’s special focus on local communities – an individual approach on the social subject.
  • My PlayGreen© is a support program which establishes outdoor spaces in urban areas, building community gardens and parks. In 5 big cities around Europe, they want to offer the residents a possibility to access nature and fresh air. Something that is rare in areas with populousness. After London in the last year, on the 19th of July 2017 the program started building in Mailand. Following after will be Berlin, Paris and Barcelona.
  • Path of Service©: To support different community projects, Timberland’s employees engage in community services all over the world. Until now, they already participated 1.000.0000 hours in their communities – supported by their employer and the team of global stewards. By the way, the Path of Service celebrates its 25th birthday this year – in a special way: On 25 days, employees can take time off of work and take their time to volunteer to support their communities. They even connected them with possibile projects by setting up a Volunteer Fair.

Joining the team: Timberland is hiring a Sustainability & Responsibility Manager

In this position, the manager is responsible for integrating the S&R strategy throughout the company, delivering information to employees and customers. As a spokes person for Timberland’s values, you represent the sports brand on conferences and workshops over Europe. 
Work closely with the different departments, from HR, over Marketing, Production and Supply Management to achieve te 2020 goals. Manage the community and environmental projects, engage and inspire the employees in participating in Timberland’s Path of Service, different commuter programs, etc. If you feel inspired to help Timberland achieve their 2020 agenda, apply for the job here.Further sport jobs by Timberland can be found on their company page here.A perfect supply chain or production in regards of nature is almost impossible to achieve, but Timberland’s vision aims on a very close solution. Their achievement sets high goals for the whole industry, a development we could already witness at adidas (Producs from Recycled Materials, their „Run for the Oceans“  and more), Patagonia and The North Face, too. With more brands following, this hopefully defines new standards for production and engagement worldwide. If you want to find out more about Responsibility and Sustainability at Timberland, check their goals and progress at their website "Responbility at Timberland".

How to score in a job interview

How to behave in a job interview
You got invited to a job interview? Congratulations! Your application convinced the company that you are one of the possible top candidates for the free position. What you need to do now, is giving them your best self in the interview to score the job. In the previous blogs, we already hinted on a checklist on how to prepare for the interview and what to wear to succeed. Now it's time to consider on how to answer and present yourself.We keep it short - these points won’t need any more explication. The interview is the moment to show them what you got. You’ll need to be self-confident and sell yourself as the best possible employee for the job. So, no questions asked - this is how you do it!

The body language

The interview is not only about the things you say, but also the ones you express with your gestures. Needless to say, it's all about showing your self-confidence and openness - two things which are transfered by body language.  That's why:
  • When you enter, smile, search eye contact and greet everyone in the room with a firm handshake
  • All the time, try to hold (natural) eye contact, without starring - if there is more than one interviewer, switch between the different persons without rushing it
  • Same for a slight smile - keep a friendly and self-confident look all the time
  • Control your posture - sit up straight, but not stiff - it's about an open body language
  • Don’t cross your arms before your chest. Better: Keep them relaxed in your lap

How to speak

Similar to your body language, how you answer will tell your interviewer a lot about yourself. Of course, what you say is giving away essential information, but so is the way you speak. It is important to
  • Avoid slang and pause words
  • Speak clearly and in a moderate volume
  • Talk in whole sentences, even when a yes or no questions comes up - the details in your answer will stand out from the ones of your competitors

Your answers to make the best impression

Now we reach the main part of your interview - the content of your answers. Keep in mind that your answers aren't only for impressing your dream employee. It's also your chance to figure out whether the job fits you.  Please, be honest in your answers - if you need to conceal your true thoughts on too many occasions, the job and the company are not the right one for you. Furthermore,
According to Andy Gugenheimer, Headhunter for the Sports Industry and CEO of Sportyjob, your skills and individual performance is what the company wants to see in an interview. Nevertheless, the possibility to integrate individuals in a team is - especially in the sports industry - a very important factor to be hired. Even when you bring amazing skills on your own - if you aren't a team player, you probably won't get a chance to prove yourself. By using "us" and "we" when answerings specific questions about possible projects and tasks, instead of "I", you'll express your will to work in a team.

  • Answer the questions in the best possible way by showing a) the information you collected before about what you know about the company b) the skills, experience and strengths you can bring into the company
  • Don’t push it though - no need to show off, try to be self-confident, but natural
  • Show enthusiasms and passion for the job
  • Avoid asking too much about possible benefits - it’s ok to talk about salary and other labour conditions though, but wait until your interviewers will bring up the topic
  • Avoid talking about your former employer or colleagues in a negative way - they will conclude that you might talk about them the same way
  • Ask the questions you prepared or ones that haven’t been answered by the interview
  • At the end, thank the interviewers for their time and tell them you’re interested in the job - the interview is meant for both sides to figure out if the job fits, so be open about your conclusion