I am the producer of Yogify – a new yoga app created by EA SPORTS. That is a statement that I never would have believed if you had told me it was true one year ago.
My name is Jen Riley, and I was most recently a communications director at EA SPORTS. This summer, I was out on maternity leave and inspiration struck. I am an avid yogi and was looking for an app to give me a guided yoga program while I was away from home. What I discovered on the App Store was an unmet need that I felt that I was uniquely qualified to bring to market. With the support of my family, I set out to ignite what was a spark of vision, into reality. I was going to make the best yoga app in the world - one that featured quality yoga classes for beginners as well as experts, in an easy to use experience, “on the go” or from the comforts of home. It started with a user experience flow plotted with Post-It notes on bristol board, to a design built on App Cooker for the iPad, to a fully funded App and development plan in the span of two months.
It is at this point that the people who believed in me expanded past my family at home, to my family at work. I initially approached the organization to get approval to develop the product on my own, but was very pleasantly surprised when my manager told me there was interest in the idea as it crossed the desk of Andrew Wilson – head of EA SPORTS. I was given the opportunity to pitch to him directly through a process that allows good ideas to come to fruition within the label called the “green light process”. After proving out a strong design, a booming market opportunity and a low cost development plan that had upside, we were approved to move forward.
Many people may ask why EA SPORTS would dip their toes into the fitness space, particularly in the wake of EA SPORTS Active. To me, it makes perfect sense. Mobile is one of the fastest growing segments in the industry, and we have an opportunity to bring something great to market. Although we are a company dedicated to doing fewer things better, we are also dedicated to our employees, and to being disruptors when it makes sense. We are a company full of passionate innovators, and Yogify is a passion project in its purest sense.
Jen Riley is a former Communications Director at EA SPORTS, demonstrating that it is possible to act as an entrepreneur in a large organization with a little passion and a lot of hard work. During a recent maternity leave, inspiration struck and she set out to make a better Yoga app, and was given the opportunity to pitch her passion project in to EA SPORTS. Her vision has come to life and Jen is presently acting as the Producer on Yogify, managing creative direction, development and the go-to market plan.