How to Ensure What Your Business Offers Is Unique
By Charlotte Newton
In a world of modern-day fitness trends and changing consumer behaviour, businesses of all types need to ensure what they are offering is interesting, unique and different from competitors. Learning new skills, adapting existing offerings and staying ahead are all vital components to a successful company this year.
Here are five ways to define your unique selling point:
Use technology to improve your business
Technology has become an increasingly important part of how people work out. Our recent research found that over three-quarters (77%) of 18-24 year-olds in the UK use technology as part of their fitness routine.* The use of technology differs depending on the type of exercise; for example, the research found that yogis were the most likely to find technology useful for gaining greater access to classes (22%).
Blending technology and your business, and incorporating the latest advances is a great way of keeping things fresh, and ensuring you are always making things easy and convenient for the customer.
Embrace total wellbeing
Introducing practices that champion overall health and wellbeing will help you stand out from the crowd. The more creative you are, the better. Stress-busting yoga and Pilates are becoming more and more popular, particularly in today’s fast-paced society, and this is something that can be capitalised on in any element of health and fitness. In fact, MINDBODY data found that 70% of those that do yoga do so as they believe the exercise relieves anxiety for them.
Luke Hughes, of Origym Group Ltd, added: “Since around 2010, the popularity of yoga and Pilates studios has increased by a margin of around 2% each year, their popularity owed to their inclusivity for all ages, when compared to more competitive, team-based sports.
“Seasoned fitness professionals will tell you that it is no coincidence that the overall popularity of low-impact, spiritual fitness practices has increased along with the average age of the population. The proportional increases, in fact, reflect on a society who, regardless of age, are overall more concerned with health and fitness, both physical and mental.”
Rethink your timetable
Flexible working is on the rise and tweaking your offering to reflect this change in customers’ schedules could have a huge impact on your business; both in the short- and long-term. Our research revealed that the most popular time to work out in the UK is between 18.00 and 18.59. However, almost half (49%) of respondents said that they have no preferred time, suggesting that peak times are becoming a thing of the past.
Mixing up your offering to target customers at various times throughout the day could help you get in front of new members who are looking for more convenient times to work out.
Think outside the box
With thousands of fitness, health and wellbeing studios across the UK, making yours different is ultimately what will drive footfall. Get creative and think about services or offerings that can really add value, in addition to your standard class timetable.
Justin Rogers, Creative Director at Ten Health & Fitness explains why the launch of Ten Clinical (which bridges the gap between the fitness and medical community) has been instrumental to the studio's growth.
“Ten has always been more than just another boutique fitness provider - with our ability to offer an end-to-end solution, helping people from rehabilitation to full function fitness, we were already well on the way to achieving this. Ten Clinical takes us one step further within that strategy. It also means we can reach a new and growing population for whom exercise isn’t just a lifestyle choice, it’s a genuine need. The response has been amazing so far.”
Jill Simpson, founder Ebb & Flow in Farnham, has found added value in hosting regular workshops with a permanent in-house nutritionist. She said: “Our in-house nutritional therapist has been invaluable in educating and informing our students about a holistic approach to their wellbeing. They have embraced wholeheartedly the workshops and talks we have arranged about various important topics such as: ‘Nutrition for Brain Health’, ‘Vegan Health’, ‘Balancing your Nutritional Intake and ‘Hormone & Nutrition for Pre, Post and Peri Menopause’. All of these talks have been sold out and incredibly well-received, therefore it naturally follows that after this education a student will book a private consultation at the studio together with tests, diet planning and then subsequent supplement sales.”
Shivraj Bassi, CEO at Innermost, also comments on why London’s boutique studios are choosing to expand their offering beyond just fitness: “Fitness studios are increasingly diversifying their offering to provide value to customers in different ways and generate additional revenue streams. In-house smoothie bars are a great example of this. We partner with many leading boutique studios in London and internationally, who use our nutrition products to build their smoothie offering. Their smoothie bars provide a hub that helps build not only a community for members but also a nutrition offering that enhances the studios’ value proposition and compliments their core offering.”
Branch out into new disciplines
Don’t just stick with what you know. While you may be good at it, it’s key that businesses learn new skills, employ the right people and continually develop their offering to attract a more diverse customer base.
Olivia Brafman, head of business for Ministry does Fitness comments on why HIITBOX is freshening up its studio offering via events. She said, “The HIITBOX event adds huge value to what we do, it allows us to branch into new disciplines that complement our day to day studio, work with world-renowned talent, get creative with fitness experiences in bigger spaces and ultimately grow our fitness brands potential and awareness for the future.”
*OnePoll Survey of 2000 UK adults. February 2018.