The Power and Promise of Race Reviews

by Mike Sohaskey, RaceRaves co-founder

Let’s be honest: Reviews matter.

From where we eat, to what we watch, to where we stay, reviews on third-party websites have an outsized influence on our decisions as consumers. So why should races be any different?

Now, with the launch of RunSignup’s new Web Builder V2, it’s easier than ever to add custom content to your website to encourage post-race reviews and showcase the great reviews you’ve already earned.

Finisher Reviews = Free Marketing! is the premier race finder and reviews community for runners around the world to discover, share and connect. With ~500,000 monthly page views our robust race database, intuitive search features, finisher reviews for 4,000+ events, and best-in-class editorial content help runners find their next start line.

As an event organizer, encouraging finisher reviews on a trusted platform like RaceRaves is your chance to let your runners do the work for you. It’s hard-earned kudos for a job well done. It’s free advertising from your best evangelists. And it’s the best social proof you have to communicate what makes your event special.

In today’s saturated marketplace of events, strong word of mouth is key. You need every advantage you can get, and positive reviews help your event stand out from the crowd.

Specifically, reviews can:

  1. Help listings stand out in the discovery phase
  2. Convert prospective runners in the research phase
  3. Turn finishers into evangelists in the post-race phase

Best of all, there’s no cost to add this arrow to your marketing quiver, only a willingness to ask (in your existing post-race communications) that your customers help you spread the word.

1. Discovery: Help Your Listings Stand Out

As consumers, we’re much more likely to purchase a product or service if it earns high ratings. And a high rating based on a meaningful number of reviews will help your event stand out in both search engine results and on discovery sites like RaceRaves.

On RaceRaves, once a runner enters their basic search criteria to find a race, they can filter the results based on highest rating (below), number of reviews, or even Top Rated 🏆status (awarded to events that earn an overall rating of 4.7 or higher across 10+ reviews).

In this way, the RaceRaves algorithm elevates the most highly rated events for easier discovery:

2. Research: Convert Prospective Customers

As a marketer, it’s important to speak to people where they are. Showcasing honest and enthusiastic third-party reviews on your website helps convert prospective runners into paying customers.

After all, races are considered purchases that require a commitment—in the form of training and potentially travel—beyond a credit card number. As such, races benefit greatly from reviews since runners want to hear from past finishers before committing their time and money.

With this in mind, we’d recommend event organizers dedicate a section (e.g. “Hear What Our Runners Say”) to showcase testimonials and badges from third-party platforms, as the Grit OCR (Santa Clarita, CA) does to highlight its Top Rated status on RaceRaves:

3. Post-Race: Turn Finishers Into Evangelists

We all know runners like to share their experiences—after all, if you run a marathon and don’t tell anyone, did it really happen? Unfortunately, one-on-one conversations and short-lived social media posts are neither easily searchable nor scalable.

On the other hand, third-party platforms like RaceRaves give runners a trusted, easily searchable resource to find races and read testimonials from your finishers, testimonials that speak to the quality of your event and reinforce your reasons to run.

Treat the days immediately after a successful event—and before you power down your weary brain—as a crucial and timely opportunity to encourage reviews that harness the excitement of your finishers and capitalize on their post-race endorphins. This can be as easy as including a “Help us spread the word” message in your post-race emails & social posts.

Always remember that happy finishers are your best evangelists.

Conclusion: Harness the Power of Reviews

As an event organizer, your goal is to create a cost-effective marketing plan that increases awareness and fuels interest to drive registrations. Race reviews can be a powerful and affordable part of that plan.

Often overlooked as a marketing tool, reviews are your secret weapon throughout the customer acquisition journey, reinforcing the key messages that differentiate your event while empowering your finishers and fans to spread the word and evangelize on your behalf.

Click here to learn more and to see how large & small events alike leverage reviews on RaceRaves to generate social proof, elevate awareness and interest, and attract new registrants! Or feel free to contact us directly at

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