First things first – welcome to the new UltraSignup blog! We are very excited to launch this new content platform. Our blog is going to be a focus for 2021 (and beyond) as we work to bring you regular, fresh, and interesting content.
Our readers will see a nice mix of articles from our writers and industry partners. We are going to share our platform with industry partners in an effort to bring the broadest blend of content from across our community.
We are also open to allowing guest writers to drop into the blog to share an article.
As with all things UltraSignup, we want this blog to be written by the community for the community. We hope you enjoy our upcoming content as much as we enjoy bringing it to you!
Who We Are?
Some of you may have seen this very nice write-up by UltraRunning Magazine about how we came to be involved with UltraSignup.
We are a group from Nashville, Tennessee that was introduced to Mark Gilligan and UltraSignup in the fall of 2019 (although not all of us had been participants of the platform before).
The team is a unique blend of different talents that we hope will bring stability and future feature enhancements to the platform.
Jay Kelley, David Callahan, and JJ Rosen are all associated with Atiba in Nashville. Atiba is a full-service technology company primarily focused on custom software development. UltraSignup, at its core, is a custom software platform connecting race directors with racers. So, the resources that the team could bring to bear on the platform through Atiba made it a great fit.
We thought it might be helpful for us to explain why we fell in love with UltraSignup.
The first thing that attracted us to UltraSignup was the platform itself. Mark Gilligan built a truly unique platform experience that is distinct from anything else on the market.
The platform is so much more than just race registration. It has become the first place to find results and rankings in the United States. That is no small feat. When we looked at site traffic we noticed how much time was spent on the site in areas other than race registrations.
This diversity in how people are spending their time on the site showed us that it was so much more than just race registrations. The site was a community of racers and race directors situated in a truly diverse niche.
Unlike other race registration platforms out there, UltraSignup has a community. If you come to the site you will see hundreds of races all sharing the platform. This ecosystem of “sharing the traffic” leads to the potential of a small race in Tennessee being seen by tens of thousands of people per day.
If such a race was supported by another race registration platform it would not receive that community support. Rather, the race would only receive the traffic that it could muster through paid advertising or organic traffic.
The size and breadth of the UltraSignup traffic, in aggregate, is far greater than the majority of races could expect to receive on their own. This was something we just loved about the ecosystem.
Most of the race directors who use the platform know Bill Carr (or at least the legend of Bill Carr). For most racers out there, you may not have the opportunity to interact with Bill, but please know that he is the wizard behind the curtain.
Bill is an incredible problem solver, and one of the reasons we fell in love with UltraSignup. He seemingly works all hours of the day and night. Bill knows all of the nooks and crannies of the platform. If there is ever a question about how something “should” work, it can be answered by Bill.
Bill needs to be on all of our holiday lists – maybe in 2021 we can flood Bill’s mailbox with fruitcakes as a sign of our collective appreciation for what he does for the community. Be on the lookout Bill!
We also fell in love with the platform because we knew that we would have a 2021.
2021 is going to be the year of the comeback….especially in the trail running space. We view it not only as a comeback, but really as a year of growth for the sport.
Trail races are some of the first races that will be able to come back. Runners craving in-person events will migrate to the beauty of the trail, and some many will never fully return to the road.
We were cautious of 2020 but we are optimistic of 2021 and beyond.
Future of UltraSignup
We are very excited for the future of the platform. There are a lot of improvements and enhancements in the hopper.
This year we already took a major step forward by moving the entire site and database to a more stable and expansive server solution. This was the first major server migration in the history of UltraSigup. We are happy to report that it went well and the benefits of the transfer are already evident in site speed.
Our team is going to be working over the coming months and years to improve the stability of the site while we incrementally improve the offerings and features. This is going to be a step-by-step process. Much like watching your child grow, the growth might not be obvious day over day, but when you pull out the baby pictures you can really see the progress.
There are going to be some big and noticeable improvements along the way. But, there is also going to be a lot happening behind the scenes that you may not notice until you recall the UltraSignup of 2020. Again, the parent analogy is apt – we love UltraSignup 2020 but we will also love the growth and development of the site in the future.
So, be on the lookout for changes coming your way (this blog is the first example of the evolution).
We are excited to be part of the community and we will do our very best to be stewards of this important platform.