Customer Stories


How a fitness company transformed its community-first influencer strategy into a content machine.
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Nutrabolt, the leading sports nutrition company, is parent to brands such as C4 and XTEND. As a business that holds a 40% market share in the pre-workout category, has a presence in more than 150 countries and is sold in over 40,000 retailers, it has to appeal to a wide audience.

From new moms, experienced bodybuilders, and everyone in between, at every step of someone’s fitness journey, seeing inspiration from others is essential for creating influence. Nutrabolt knew they needed to formalize its idea of community and find a way to maximize results.

Katie Tershel, the Director of Partnership Marketing, has the task of creating influence within all of Nutrabolt’s diverse audiences. She oversees the brand’s athlete, influencer, and event marketing programs to create connections in the fitness space and further the brand’s mission to make fitness and sports nutrition accessible to all.

Katie relies on communities of influencers, athletes, and customers to create authentic content.

But the key to authentic content is genuine connections, not transactional relationships. To build relationships that foster community, Katie and her small team of four needed to manage hundreds of relationships ranging from Instagram DMs to relationships in the field to professional athlete endorsements. Juggling multiple threads of conversations across various mediums made it nearly impossible to scale her community in the way that she wanted. She needed:

1. A system of record that formalizes all relationships in one place, and automates time-consuming processes like setting terms and dealing with billing.

2. Help to discover the community members who would be helpful at every step, from product conception to promotion, and removing the personal bias behind choosing influencers.


Finding On-Brand Influencers

Katie realizes that just because an influencer creates amazing content doesn’t mean that person aligns best with the company’s values and message. With Aspire, Nutrabolt can see each influencer’s audience demographics, engagement rates, follower authenticity, brand affinity and more. Being able to efficiently vet influencers removes an inevitable layer of personal bias and ensures Nutrabolt can find influencers who will relate to their consumers. Alignment with influencers is the key to success. For example, Katie cultivated a relationship with devoted customer, Ryan Smith, after meeting him in person. The team repurposes his authentic content, and Ryan gets his content in front of a larger audience, making it a win-win situation for all.

Deepening Relationships With Influencers

Using a platform like Aspire allows Nutrabolt to streamline time-consuming processes like setting terms, getting content licensing rights, and processing payments. Because each relationship is automatically pushed through the collaboration process, Katie and her team can focus on getting to know each individual on a deeper level. For example, the brand partnered with Mat Fraser, “The Fittest Man on Earth,” to launch a supplement — Fraserade XTEND Elite. The day of the launch was the highest-grossing sales day on ever. Plus, 90% of sales were from new customers, proving that influencers opened Nutrabolt up to audiences they couldn’t reach on their own.

Activating Communities

Nutrabolt creates loyal customers, by generating an emotional connection, listening to what its audience has to say, and building a community of people who tell your brand story together. For example, when Nutrabolt heard that customers were using its XTEND recovery product as both a mixer and for hangovers, the brand was taken off guard. But rather than shying away, it leaned into what its customers loved about the product and launched an XTEND mixology campaign and crafted the tagline “Work. Play. Recover.” to ensure people could have a fun night out and still make it to the gym in the morning. The overall campaign resulted in 4 million impressions, 100,000 engagements, and an earned media value triple what Nutrabolt spent. Influencers had fun with the campaign, leading to the community jumping into the conversation organically.


Nutrabolt’s community-first marketing strategy has helped it generate $650M in retail sales last year, sell more than 2 billion servings of C4, and see a 150% growth in online sales year-over-year.

Rather than running everything manually, Aspire makes Nutrabolt’s process much more turnkey. Through its influencer program, it was able to source more than 1,000 pieces of authentic content and gain nearly 35,000 followers on Instagram alone. And because Katie no longer has to worry about time-consuming tasks, her team has been able to focus on strengthening the community of both customers and influencers.

The best example is Nutrabolt’s C4 Fitness Summit, a 360-degree marketing approach that helped Nutrabolt stand out in the most crowded marketplace of all: New York City. Since so many locals leave the city during sweltering summer weekends, Nutrabolt invited the movers and shakers of the NYC fitness community to attend a retreat in Montauk. As a result, Nutrabolt connected with over 50 influencers, reached 14M+ people through influencer content, received tags and mentions in 400+ Instagram stories, and saw a net promoter score increase from 2.3 out of 5 to 4.9 out of 5 from attendees.  

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