Editor’s note: This article by Greg Anderson originally appeared on ArcticStartup, an independent tech blog that reports on digital startups and growth entrepreneurship from the Nordic and Baltic countries.
Like any other business, the sports, health, and wellness sector needs new customers walking through the door all the time. But due to their hands-on nature, traditional advertising works poorly; the personality of a tennis instructor or the quality of gym equipment is tough to put in a newspaper advertisement.
So to increase more leads for their sports partners, Helsinki-based SportSetter offers something that feels a little bit like the lead generation offered by daily deals companies, but with much less of the downside for small businesses. Today, they’re also announcing that they’ve raised €400,000 ($520,000) in angel funding.
The concept works like this: users sign up online to their service and fill in the types of activities they’re interested in. Then for around €30 a month, they provide you with four passes to things that interest you – which can range from gyms, to yoga studios, to even things like rock climbing, brazilian jujitsu and parkour.
They say your €30 gets you around €120 worth of activities.
In Helsinki they have 30 partnerships, and on average each partner offers over two activities.
Co-founder Niko Karstikko of Sportsetter tells us that they really lower the bar when it comes to trying out new activities, but at the same time they’re not a daily deals company where price is the main motivator. The general complaint of the “75% off” nature of daily deals is that it devalues your product, and sends a bad message to your current and future clients.
Sportsetter gets around this by avoiding the price completely within their service, so you might get personal training worth €90/hour, but you don’t realize it when you’re paying only €30 a month.
Their model still carries some risk for activity providers as some customers might treat it as a cheap sports card and not consider it as an introductory service. But as their new investment tells you, Sportsetter seems to already validated their user case, and the concept seems like it will be an obvious hit in competitive markets. Recently the company opened their office in NYC, which is the next region they’ll attack.
With the investment they are currently recruiting and working on securing more partnerships.
Top image credit: Thinkstock