19 Aug 2018 Health Club Management Handbook
 

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Health Club Management Handbook - Editor’s letter

Introduction

Editor’s letter


Welcome to the Health Club Management Handbook 2O16

Kate Cracknell, Health Club Management
Kate Cracknell Health Club Management Handbook

2016 is shaping up to be a year of exciting opportunities for the fitness sector: new technology will allow operators to reach far beyond the walls of their facilities; social media will continue to spread the fitness word; and new concepts – from boutiques (see p33) to trampolining mega-centres (see p20) – will bring the buzz of exercise to new fan bases.

But behind these trends, subtler shifts in nuance will also have a significant impact on the sector.

One of these is a change in consumer mindset – a new attitude towards fitness – that’s being driven by the Millennial market. This group of consumers expects flexibility, both in how they buy membership and in when/where they work out (see p18 and p22). They also expect personalisation: this is the ‘blue dot’ generation that’s happy to be tracked and to share their data, but you have to make it worth their while (see p13). But perhaps the most exciting opportunity lies in Millennials’ take on status. For this group, status isn’t about possessions – it’s about things they’ve done that they can share on social media (see p17).

For businesses, that means creating unique, engaging, fun experiences that consumers will want to shout about. That should be easier for the fitness sector than for other industries, and there are some great examples out there already – think Color Run, Tough Mudder, CrossFit. But the sector as a whole will need to rethink its approach to customer experience. Just having clean showers and working equipment is no longer enough – we need to get creative and deliver Experience with a capital E.

Kate Cracknell
Health Club Management Handbook
katecracknell@leisuremedia.com
@HealthClubKate


Originally published in Health Club Handbook 2016 issue 1

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