When I came across the article, “Can Livestrong Survive Lance?” in the November edition of Fast Company (http://bit.ly/fFu6kc) I thought Livestrong and the article would be all about Lance Armstrong.
I was wrong. While there’s quire a bit about Lance and his ongoing legal battles regarding performance enhancing drugs, Livestrong is doing just fine thanks to its wise beyond his years CEO, Doug Ullman. Ullman, a cancer survivor himself, has evolved Livestrong beyond the Lance Armstrong Foundation to a $50 million a year non-profit committed to helping cancer patients survive and thrive.
They do this via online support groups, guidebooks and planners, YMCA’s offering Livestrong workouts for cancer survivors, a SurvivorCare help line, survivor programs in cancer hospitals, more than 1,800 local events and more than 170 young adult alliance groups.
Livestrong is a community for people with cancer. Their was no community for survivors until Livestrong created it.
To help fund the organization, Ullman is taking Demand Media, one of the 20 largest U.S. internet companies public in order to give Livestrong financial stability for the future — regardless of what ultimately happens to Lance Armstrong.
Ullman understands the power of a community. According to Ullman, “If the brand is really authentic, it’s theirs.”
It’s obvious from the events and the participants that they own Livestrong and that Livestrong will live on.
Can you create a community to ensure that your brand lives on?