Tough Mudder continues expansion into mainstream with media and e-commerce play

The first time people saw Tough Mudder races they were probably looking for a cool activity to do with their friends. At a time when endurance racing was the new rage, Tough Mudder — and other obstacle course events — put a fun spin on team related and endurance obstacle course races. Tough Mudder started to expand over the past year and now it’s growing at an amazing rate.

Earlier this month, Tough Mudder announced they have expanded their partnership with CBS. Events used to be televised on CBS Sports Network, but now Tough Mudder will be shifted to the broadcast network where more people will be able to watch athletes navigate through creative obstacles and challenge their competitors. The highlight will be Tough Mudder X. The competition finals will be aired on September 3, but other Mudder events will be shown weeks before that. This will allow the company to try and build their brand and generate viewership by hyping the main event.

Tough Mudder isn’t resting on its laurels with their events starting to get greater reach. They also struck an e-commerce deal with Amazon. As the events gain more notoriety and viewership, the company will try and take advantage of its popularity by selling swag on the internet. Official partners will benefit from this move as their product will be featured on the Tough Mudder page along with original video content. Sponsors who are working with Tough Mudder will essentially have their point of sale integrated with the content. There’s no better activation and Tough Mudder will be able to point to exact sales figures as it negotiates with new partners in the future.

Finally, Tough Mudder will also start their own boot camp workouts. Similar to the workout phenomenon found with other boot camps, Cross Fit and Orange Theory. The classes will be short interval training sessions focused on the necessary skills needed to complete an endurance type race. These type of workout classes have been growing in almost every market. It adds another piece to the brand Tough Mudder is attempting to build.

We’ll see what comes out of this expansion. A concern many companies like this end up running into is that they try and grow too big, too fast. Most of this expansion shouldn’t be an issue. Tough Mudder was already producing television content, now that content is moving to a greater distribution channel. The Amazon deal shouldn’t be onerous, especially since the company and its partners understand how to work in the retail space. The workout camps may be more challenging in a crowded field, but the name recognition could help when they open up the camps.

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