MAN v FAT is the brainchild of Andrew Shanahan, an award-winning writer, editor and publisher. Created in response to the dearth of weight loss programmes tailored specifically to men, MAN v FAT provides men with weight loss advice and motivation.
A business built out of necessity
We talked to Andrew about his experiences in building a business from scratch.
“My experience of trying to get support for my weight loss was sitting in a Weight Watchers meeting while the leader told the class that "during your time of the month you’ll get fluctuations in your weight so don’t worry if you gain!" I was (fairly) sure that wasn’t my issue and it got me wondering – how many other men out there are struggling just to find some help with their weight loss?”
“I was morbidly obese in 2014 and there wasn't much out there for men trying to lose weight. That’s when MAN v FAT was born.”
“Man v Fat started as a free digital magazine, a website and a forum. By 2015 we had over 350,000 people on the forum. This year we're going to do over half a million people.”
Building a successful business
When Andrew's business received media exposure, he understood the importance of using this as a springboard for further success.
“Man v Fat started as a free digital magazine, a website and a forum. By 2015 we had over 350,000 people on the forum. This year we're going to do over half a million people. One of the real surprises with MAN v FAT football was the media interest in what we were doing. We've been on The One Show twice, and we've been on Channel 5's The Saturday Show. I think nearly every national newspaper has covered us. It's grown significantly and very quickly.”
Choosing the right host
Andrew explains why you need website hosting that can scale with a rapidly expanding online business.
“One downside, if you can call it that, of having a lot of media attention is that suddenly you get these limited windows of opportunity where you want your website to behave. 34SP.com have been brilliant with that throughout the years. As a result, the website stays online and we manage to convert that precious time into sales and registrations.”
“One of the things I always suggest people is that they should try and phone the technical support helpline. People will die long before some hosting companies ever pick up the phone, at that point, you have to remember you're going to be panicking like crazy. It's nice to speak to nice people who are dedicated to supporting you and emphatically that is what you get with 34SP.com.”
“34SP.com have been brilliant throughout the years. As a result, the website stays online and we manage to convert that precious time into sales and registrations”
The right tools for the job
With website traffic growing by the month, Andrew explains why finding the right hosting platform is important.
“We recently moved across to the 34SP.com WordPress Hosting platform. It's outstandingly bespoke to WordPress.”
“One of the things I really like is the staging system, so we can have a live website and a staged website behind it, to try things out. If our experiments don't work, that's fine as your not doing anything that disturbs the live site.”
Championing weight loss
With national recognition and celebrity support, Andrew wants to help as many men as possible lose weight and live healthier lives.
“I've gained support from Jamie Oliver, The National Obesity Forum, Weight Concern and The British Dietetic Association. Not only that but we got thousands of subscribers backing the project. I want all men to have support when it comes to losing weight. More than that, I want MAN v FAT to champion their efforts. If you’d like to support what we’re trying to do then get involved and help us to take MAN v FAT to the 500 million overweight and obese men in the world. Share it on Facebook, stick it on Twitter, discuss it on Reddit, Instagram the living heck out of it.”