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Transforming A Real-life Event Into A Digital Experience


Since they were founded in 2008, Pelotonia—a nationally recognized grassroots philanthropic organization—has raised almost a quarter of a billion dollars for cancer research at the James Cancer Hospital in Columbus, Ohio. Pelotonia’s most concentrated efforts take place at their annual 3-day fundraising event that includes a 2-day bike ride, which consistently draws more than 8,000 riders each year. The 2020 pandemic made holding this event impossible, so Pelotonia needed to quickly adjust course. Rightpoint helped them ideate, design, test, and develop an entirely reimagined digital platform—My Pelotonia—to expand and connect the Pelotonia community in new ways and keep the mission alive even during the most challenging of times.

Starting with a Strategy
Reimagining An Iconic Real-world Event As An Innovative Digital Experience

COVID-19 brought the world to a standstill, but cancer stands still for no one. After 11 years of phenomenal fundraising success, Pelotonia found themselves in the difficult position of potentially having to cancel their cornerstone event. To continue doing their crucial fundraising work, they needed to develop an entirely different approach for their fundraising efforts—a digital experience that would connect, inspire, and empower their participants, volunteers, donors, and the Pelotonia community at large. 

Pelotonia had the advantage of having already put some thought into a larger digital transformation. They had begun rethinking their digital tools and opportunities, but were planning on implementing changes later in 2020 or 2021. The pandemic accelerated their plans drastically. Because the CDC’s cancellation of all large gatherings was a completely unexpected turn of events, Pelotonia needed to pivot quickly in a way that didn’t jeopardize community engagement or fundraising momentum. 

With the fundraising season in full swing, and the ride weekend only a few months away, Pelotonia needed to reimagine and reinvent their community engagement and core event. And they needed to do this in a way that brought all their supporters with them on the transformative journey to a new digital experience that celebrated their community's efforts in an inspiring and motivating way. 

Creating an App that Builds Community in its Daily Use

As a charity and nonprofit, Pelotonia needed a minimally viable product (MVP) in a cost-effective manner. The most important requirement was the ability to track activity and thus, raise money. The concept for PULLL was born – an app that helps runners, walkers and bicyclists turn their activity into funds to fight cancer. The apps and their features were created in a way that allows everyday people actively help advance the mission to end cancer in their day-to-day lives. 

During the build, the “PULLL Community” was created: connecting users with friends and family for support and enabling seamless donations via “boost” capabilities. Thoughtful features were mapped including the ability to synch exercises with MapMyFitness and Strava, motivate users via a robust notification system, and provide enhanced privacy settings, allowing users to manage their own data and activity. 

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Despite the completely unexpected disruption of the pandemic, Pelotonia was able—with Rightpoint’s help—to not only adapt quickly to the immediate situation, but also to take important steps in their ongoing journey of digital transformation. They were able to successfully accelerate some of Pelotonia’s longer-term strategies and transform them into quick wins. My Pelotonia allowed  Pelotonia to expand their reach, bringing their vision and mission to a larger audience than ever before.   

  • Transformed a purely physical event into an all-new digital experience. 

  • Expanded event reach from local to global. 

  • Broadened opportunities for participation with a digital platform and personalized goals. 

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Pelotonia - Image
Pelotonia - Image
“We needed a partner who could open up a world of possibilities for us. We felt really comfortable knowing that Rightpoint could innovate and help us approach problems from different perspectives. They spent all day, every day for two weeks to deliver a really innovative approach that our community has completely taken hold of and in a lot of ways will transform the organization for the future.”
Joe Apgar
Chief Operating Officer, Pelotonia
Our Contributions
  • Mobile and Emerging Technology

Our Contributions
  • Backend Integration

  • Custom Web App

  • Salesforce