From a recent article in Fast Company about CrossFit:
Prior to CrossFit.com, Glassman's program was a tiny cult sensation in the lazy beach town of Santa Cruz, Califonia, where he began training clients in a functional workout program. The company's primary revenue stream, licensing entrepreneurs to start CrossFit gyms (for what is now a $3,000 annual fee), had only a few adopters, mainly from Glassman's friends who he says begged him to start an affiliate program.
...[But] while he could never find enough people in any particular city to get momentum, the Internet could pull together all the disparate islands of potential clients, "I found a few on the net, hundreds on the net, and then thousands."
Additionally, he says, the new blogging trend allowed recently deputized zealots to write about their experiences and pull in fellow fitness enthusiasts from their network. Today, the Internet is sprawling with CrossFit blogs, some from official affiliates, and others from specialists who post their expertise for free."Zealots." I like the sound of that.
[Fast Company, via CrossFit Chronicles]