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How to turn skeptics into fans

john_foley

Casual fans come and go. But converts stick with you – and spread the word. The trick is knowing how — and WHEN — to convert skeptics into superfans. No one knows this better than Peloton Co-founder and CEO John Foley, who has one of the most epic “No-to-Yes” stories in startup history. When he founded the company in 2012, skeptics abound — especially among investors. But John pushed forward, convincing co-founders, angel investors, and then riders, one at a time. As he converted those skeptical customers — in their flagship fitness studio, in their stores, and on their at-home bikes — the feedback loops kicked in. After pedaling in place for years, Peloton rocketed up the hill to its 2019 IPO. Cameo appearances: Melanie Curtis (professional skydiver).

“People thought fitness was a dopey category where there’s been no capital and no innovation. And I would say, “Exactly.””

— John Foley
About the guest:
john_foley

John Foley is the co-founder and former CEO of Peloton. Previously, he was president of eCommerce for Barnes & Noble, president and CEO of Evite, and director of operations for Citysearch.

About the host:
reid_hoffman

Reid Hoffman is the host of Masters of Scale. A Silicon Valley entrepreneur and investor, he’s known for his spot-on insights on how to scale a startup. He’s a partner at Greylock and co-founder of LinkedIn, and co-author of the best-selling Blitzscaling and The Startup of You.

Also featured in this episode:

Melanie Curtis is a professional skydiver and founder of How to Fly, Inc. and the Highlight Pro Skydiving Team.

You clear your path to scale by converting skeptics to fanatics. The best megaphones for your product are the ones who doubted you at the start.

Transcript of Masters of Scale: How to turn skeptics into fans
Masters of Scale’s mission is to democratize entrepreneurship. Launched in 2017 as a weekly podcast featuring Reid Hoffman, we’re now two weekly podcasts — Masters of Scale with Reid Hoffman, and Masters of Scale: Rapid Response, hosted by Bob Safian — as well as an award-winning daily learning app, a best-selling book, virtual and live events, and more, serving a global community of founders, funders, and leaders looking to innovate at scale.
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