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Essay: Spartan Race – Porter’s 5 Forces + SWOT analysis

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This marketing proposal aims to prove why we should manage the next edition of the Spartan Race. Using two essential tools, Porter’s 5-Forces and SWOT analysis, this proposal has shown how strong Spartan race are compared to other obstacle race. Providing other than just an obstacle race, they have been raising brand awareness through their products A survey is also conducted on individuals and have shown that Spartan Race are even known to those who have never join any race.


Spartan Race is a well-known series of obstacle race around the world. More than 240 races have taken place in 30 countries. Founded by Andy Weinberg, Julian Kopald and Joe De Sena, the first Spartan Race in Singapore was held on 15 November 2015 at the open field by Nicoll Highway. Here we will look at an environmental scan of the organisation using two components Porter’s 5-Forces and SWOT Analysis and why we should manage the next edition of the race.

Objectives of a Marketing Plan

It needs to be clear, direct, measurable, achievable and have realistic timing limit. The objective is to comprehend how environmental factors affects the company’s decision-making. A well-design marketing plan that follows guidelines have a much better chance for success.

Definition of Porter’s 5 Forces

Porter’s 5-Forces is a tool that identifies and analyse 5 important forces that influence profitability in every industry and helps determine a strategy to enhance companies long-term profits. The 5 forces are Threat of New Entrants, Threat of Substitution, Bargaining Power of customers, Bargaining Power of Suppliers and Competitive Rivalry.

Threat of new Entrants

There are number of barriers to entry for new organisations who wants to join in the market of obstacle races. Spartan Race are well known in 30 countries. They have large amount of participants who join yearly due to the bond and memories they go home with. Podcast, books, digital magazine, activities for kids, workout gear, media channel are some unique features Spartan Race have against other obstacle race organisation. But new organisations can still compete as the obstacles have more or less the same elements, like crawling in mud or scaling a high wall.

Threat of Substitution

Other races such as triathlon or runs serves different function compared to an obstacle race. A simple survey was conducted to 7 individuals and it was shown that 4 out of 7 prefer obstacle race.

Bargaining power of customers

There are no costs for people to switch and join different obstacle race. No memberships are included so there’s no contract for people to stay. Participants can even choose to transfer their registration to someone else In any case they won’t be able to make it.

Bargaining power of supplier

Supplier would want to work and supply for Spartan Race as they have a large number of participants. And because of this, suppliers can increase the prices of the products. Having a number of sponsors with big names such as Reebok can help Spartan Race to decrease numbers of products by suppliers. Companies would want to sponsor Spartan Race as a way of branding awareness.

Competitive Rivalry

A number of other Obstacle Races such as Ninja Warrior, Viper Challenge, Mud Warrior and Mens Health Urbanlathon, are also known across countries. They too have been around for a number for years. Comparing to Spartan Race, they do not have the unique features that Spartan Race have to offer. A tight rivalry would be to Ninja warrior as both of them have their own tv show and well known across countries.

Definition of SWOT Analysis

A SWOT analysis identifies the strength, weakness, opportunities and threats in organization. Strength and weakness are evaluated internally while opportunities and threats externally. Formulating the strategy and using the knowledge of an organization are the objectives of SWOT analysis.

Strength Analysis

Spartan Race have a strong brand recognition. Mention Spartan Race and instantly people will think of obstacle race. Other than an obstacle race, Spartan Race sells workout gear, nutritional products, hosting own TV show, publishing books and also digital magazine which makes them different from other obstacle race organisation. They are also open to all ages even children and people with disabilities.

Weakness Analysis

The obstacle race elements in Spartan Race are more or less similar to other obstacle race. Crawling in mud, climbing high wall or having to run up a hill can be found in any obstacle race. Registration are expensive compared to others.


Spartan Race can be found easily in lots of countries and they are still expanding. They have sponsors such as Reebok, Rakuten and recently a number of energy drink companies.


Being expensive to sign-up, other obstacle race organisation become an affordable alternative. Other obstacle race such as Ninja Warrior too offers a TV show where participants can join and better still become known. Another threat on the rise now is the Covid-19 which discourages any mass gathering or events. This have affected many other organisations and will surely affect Spartan Race.


Spartan Race is the preferred choice compared to other obstacle race as Spartan Race have more to offer than just a race. A special sense of belonging are a factor why participants return to join. The two tool used to evaluate the organisation have shown how strong Spartan Race have been and how they can counter their threats and weakness.

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