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Influencer Marketing

3 Fitness Brands Winning Influencer Marketing

Let's take a look behind-the-scenes of leading fitness brands like Alani Nu, Gymshark, and Rad Power Bikes.
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Now more than ever, people are turning to social media for fitness inspiration, whether it’s to find the best sweat-wicking activewear or to discover a new workout routine. In fact, as of 2023, fitness has grown into a $21.82 billion industry online, jumping nearly 40% year-over-year. 

To match this demand, fitness influencers have emerged on social media to serve up daily doses of motivation, inspirational stories, meal plans, and educational videos. And every leading fitness brand is leveraging these authentic voices by activating these creators in innovative ways — beyond just #sponsored posts. 

In this 3-part series, we’re looking into influencer marketing strategies specifically for fitness brands. In Part 1, we explored 4 influencer marketing best practices that we gathered after examining hundreds of successful collaborations on Aspire. 

Now, in Part 2, we’re giving you examples of 3 fitness brands that have strong influencer marketing strategies. Let’s get started.

Alani Nu

It can be extremely difficult to stand out in the sea of fitness brands — but Alani Nu has figured out the secret recipe for success. 

Beyond its amazing range of protein-packed products and eye-catching branding, Alani Nu has built a devoted fan base, who not only consistently shop from the brand, but also spread organic advocacy. 

To supercharge this word-of-mouth, the team activates creators in several ingenious ways.

  • Influencer co-creation: From social media megastars like Addison Rae to cultural icons like Kim Kardashian, Alani Nu often partners with well-aligned macro-influencers and celebrities to develop new flavors. At the launch of each new product, the team also gifts them to a handful of creators who create content such as taste tests and unboxings that build a buzz on social. By collaborating with these recognizable faces, the brand not only benefits from wide reach, but also gains credibility and trust in the process. 
  • Brand ambassador program: Because Alani Nu’s customers are a younger demographic, the brand recruits college students to be its long-term brand ambassadors. But rather than spending hours searching for the right partners, the brand has an application page on their website where those who are interested can apply. This is a great way to ensure that the brand ambassador is an authentic Alani Nu fan. Once accepted, each ambassador receives perks such as a monthly shipment of products, exclusive merch, invites to unique events, access to the brand’s private Instagram account, and much more — incentivizing them to continue spreading the word about Alani Nu on their college campuses.
  • Customer rewards: It’s not just influencers and college students who have the opportunity to reap the benefits of being part of the Alani Nu community. The brand also has a customer rewards program, which allows customers to earn points with every purchase and referral, get exclusive discounts, and redeem personalized perks — gamifying the shopping experience and rewarding consumers for their loyalty.
  • UGC: Last but not least, Alani Nu repurposes user-generated content (UGC) from its community across its branded channels, from organic social to its website, stretching the impact of their third-party validation and injecting authenticity into the brand.
Facebook / Alani Nu

All of these efforts seem to be working. Alani Nu reportedly generates around $100 million of annual earnings and was recently valuated at over $3 billion. 


In the early days of fitness apparel brand Gymshark, it started working with YouTubers in the fitness space to increase brand awareness. As the brand grew, Gymshark strived to create a “family” that shared the same passion for fitness and in helping others, along with a vision to grow into something bigger than themselves. Now, Gymshark’s athletes are all part of long-term ambassadorships, rather than one-off sponsorships. 

Stephanie O’Neill, Gymshark’s Head of PR, commented, “It’s all about being authentic. The vast majority of Gymshark ambassadors were once fans and consumers of the brand. Who better to represent the brand than those who actually love Gymshark?”

Today, the brand famously takes its ambassador relationships to the next level by co-creating with them. Remember that co-creation is much more involved than simply gathering customer feedback. True co-creation means consumers are involved in each step of the process from research and development to promotion, forming a true partnership. 

Here’s how Gymshark co-creates with its ambassadors:

  • Building entire product lines together: Take Gymshark ambassador, Whitney Simmons, for example. The brand first collaborated with Whitney on a sold-out workout line in 2019. It was so successful that they worked on a total of five Gymshark x Whitney Simmons collections that were fully embraced by her fans and the wider Gymshark community. 
  • Co-hosting events: Recently, Gymshark ambassador Anna Archer has been co-hosting a run club with Gymshark, coined “Anna On The Run.” Through events such as this one, Gymshark is able to leverage Anna’s devoted fanbase to engage and align the brand with the wider fitness community, taking the brand experience to the next level beyond just one-way transactions.
  • Promoting the brand together: All of Gymshark’s brand ambassadors have a deep relationship with the fitness brand — from co-hosting events to co-creating exclusive activewear collections with Gymshark. But it doesn’t end there. Ambassadors also regularly post workout videos sporting Gymshark activewear, even without it being a #sponsored post. Because of their long-term, authentic endorsement of Gymshark, ambassadors’ audience is more compelled to trust their recommendations and try out the products for themselves.

By investing deeply into its community of fitness enthusiasts, Gymshark has seen success. In fact, the brand posted revenue of £556 million in 2023, a 15% increase compared to the previous year — driven by a 13.1% increase in orders and a 12.5% rise in international sales. With many other exciting initiatives in the works, Gymshark founder and CEO Ben Francis says that 2024 will be even bigger.

Rad Power Bikes

Rad Power Bikes, the award-winning ebike brand, launched an innovative campaign to activate its community of loyal customers who could speak to the quality of the products and spread advocacy about the brand. 

  • Customers-turned-ambassadors: To spark organic conversation and capitalize on word-of-mouth marketing, Rad Power Bikes invited its most loyal customers to become official brand ambassadors — despite them lacking traditional influencer backgrounds.
  • Product seeding: To build even more positive goodwill around the brand, the team planned a surprise-and-delight campaign, gifting accessories and other small add-ons to Rad Power Bikes’ new cohort of first-time ambassadors. In addition, the brand even offered some customers a discount on their service fees, which elevated the Rad Power Bikes customer experience and boosted brand loyalty.
  • Traditional influencer marketing: To ensure that the brand got high-quality, high-performing content, Rad Power Bikes supplemented the customer ambassador program by also working with more established creators, who are experienced in effectively driving impressions, engagement, and sales.

As a result, Rad Power Bikes was able to not only take its customer relationships to the next level and establish trust within their tight-knit networks, but also drive millions of impressions and generate an impressive number of conversions in just 5 months, leading to an astounding 561% increase in ROI.

To learn more about Rad Power Bikes’ winning strategy, check out the full case study

Next, in Part 3, we’ll inform you of everything you need to know about working with fitness influencers. Read it here

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