Man Working Out in the Gym with Mindbody Wellness Index Logo

What the Rise of Men's Health and Wellness Means for Wellness Businesses in Australia

By Bailey Clark

Have you thought about how your wellness business resonates with men? If you have not prioritised them as a target audience in your marketing efforts, you will want to after reading this report.

In the recent trend study we've conducted (the 2021 Mindbody Wellness Index), we discovered that 56% of men have increased their focus on health and wellness since the beginning of the pandemic. From in-person and virtual fitness adoption and frequenting boutique fitness locations to integrative health practices and prioritising self-care, men had a massive impact on the health and wellness industry last year. They're prioritising wellness across multiple dimensions.

Read on to learn more about how men engage with health and wellness in 2021 and how your business can attract and retain them.

Exercise Trends

Men report that they exercise because they want to control their weight, feel good, and feel better mentally. On the other hand, women exercise to feel better mentally, control their weight, and feel good. The most popular group workouts for men include cardio machines, weight and strength training, and aerobics. We dug into exercise trends over the past year and how they have shifted—frequency, preferred workouts, and more regarding men compared to women.

Men frequent gyms and boutique fitness studios more than women

Men love gyms and boutique fitness studios. Forty percent of men exercise at a gym one time a week or more (versus 23% of women), and 29% of men exercise at a boutique studio one time a week or more (versus 17% of women). When asked about their attendance at gyms and studios, the majority of men reported that they work out at the same gym or studio as before COVID-19, with the second most popular result being they suspended their membership. Nearly a quarter (24%) of men, though, tried new classes or exercises they had not before COVID-19.

Note: Wondering where your business fits into this? Gyms include health clubs, fitness centres, and big boxes. Boutique studios are defined as a “smaller facility that specialises in certain types of classes.”

Men frequent gyms and boutique fitness studios more than women

Takeaways for your business

Incorporate messaging into your marketing strategy that appeals to the reasons that men exercise: controlling weight, feeling good, and feeling better mentally. We recommend testing out these messages in a way that aligns with your brand, and adjusting strategy as needed based on the results that you see.

Men also care about their physique and longevity with 29% wanting to look better physically and live a long and healthy life. This means you should make sure your class offerings are framed in a way that showcases the outcomes they can expect. Creating explainer content (blog posts or videos) is a great way to help assuage the fear of the unknown. See an example of explainer content.

Men exercise more and love both in-person and virtual workouts

The Mindbody Wellness Index revealed that men are working out significantly more than women (or so they say). Seventy-nine percent of men exercise once a week or more (compared to 69% of women), and 49% exercise three times a week or more (compared to 44% of women).

Men exercise more and love both in-person and virtual workouts

The hybrid fitness model is here to stay. Whether it’s a virtual or in-person workout, men appear to be game. 68% of men worked out at home and in-person at a gym or studio during the pandemic. Forty-two percent of men say they’re satisfied or very satisfied with their fitness level; only 28% of women say the same.

Of course, not all men are constantly breaking a sweat; some suffer from gymtimidation. When we asked men what would help them overcome this and head to the gym to exercise, the top answers were getting in better shape first and seeing more people like them in the promotion of the gym or studio.

Takeaways for your business

Because men exercise more times per week than women do, they have the potential to be your most engaged customers. Offering virtual classes is a great way to get men more comfortable (and more fit) before heading into the gym. To stay top of mind with this target audience, your marketing efforts should resonate with men—make sure they feel included by representing them in the pictures your business posts on social and in your email marketing campaigns. In addition, we suggest testing programs that encourage referrals. See how MVP Dance Fit and TRILLFIT have welcomed men into their studios.

Men practicing virtual fitness more than women led to them exploring new workouts

In addition to working out more in general, men engage in virtual fitness more than women. Thirty-eight percent of men used live stream workouts as part of their COVID-19 routine (compared to 28% of women) and 35% used pre-recorded video workouts (compared to 30% of women).

Men practicing virtual fitness more than women led to them exploring new workouts

Virtual fitness classes have opened new doors for men who prioritise fitness. They provide an opportunity to try something new. During COVID, 22% of men using virtual fitness tried a new fitness class.

Takeaways for your business

To capture a male audience, you will want to offer competitive price points for your classes. Since they enjoy working out at home, in addition to your studio, make sure you are offering a hybrid membership, giving men an easy way to work out in person or continue their at-home routines. Not sure how to get started? Learn about how our Virtual Wellness Platform enables you to grow your client base and business.

Men are engaging in new exercises now that accessibility to these classes is higher than ever before. Consider enticing men with new experiences in your marketing strategy. One way you can do so is to encourage your members to bring male friends, family, partners, or even colleagues to a class.

Self-care wellness trends

It’s not just about physical fitness for men. When it comes to satisfaction with their overall health, 49% of men say they’re satisfied or very satisfied. Only 34% of women say the same. Men also report feeling less stressed; 29% of men say they’re stressed or very stressed regularly (compared to 36% of women). Here’s how men are engaging in self-care through beauty and grooming and integrative health as well as how these trends have changed throughout the pandemic.

Men engage in more integrative health services than women

In 2020, men engaged in integrative health services more than women. We learned that 33% of men use alternative/integrative medicine (compared to 26% of women).

More than one in five (21%) men received a massage during the pandemic (compared to 14% women), 10% received chiropractic care (compared to 6% women), and 8% received health or life coaching (compared to 5% women). Of men who engaged in integrative health services, 24% received massages more frequently during the pandemic (compared to 17% women).

Men engage in more integrative health services than women

Takeaways for your business

Throughout the past year, men prioritised integrative health services at a higher rate than women. Since all aspects of people’s lives will be shifting again in 2021, think about considering ways in which you can retain those customers who engaged with your service frequently in 2020, such as automated marketing campaigns focused on retention.

Men have stepped up their grooming routine

Since the beginning of the pandemic, 57% of men dedicate the same time and attention towards their grooming routine, and 15% dedicate more time. The number one reason for dedicating more time? Forty four percent of men spending more time say they want to look and feel good. Thirty-eight percent say they’re doing so because they have more time, want to keep up with their beauty and grooming routines, and want to maintain their professional appearance while working from home.

While it makes sense that men were more likely to receive barber services, it was surprising to see that men were doing many beauty and grooming services more than women. Nine percent of men got full body skin treatments during the pandemic when only 5% of women did. Men were also more likely to book services for tanning or airbrush/spray tanning, and even permanent makeup or eyebrow tinting/microblading. It’s possible that men used COVID as an opportunity to try services that they might have otherwise not have explored.

Men have stepped up their grooming routine

Takeaways for your business

Because men are spending more time on their grooming routine, you have an opportunity to get them in the door for more appointments. Make sure you are making it easy for them to visit your business. One way that you can do this is through Messenger[ai], a virtual assistant that ensures you are turning missed calls into bookings.

Your service menu is a great signal to men that they’re welcome. Highlight offerings that appeal to them, including skin treatments, BOTOX® or similar fillers, and tanning services. Consider incorporating options to swap out any feminine scents with something more neutral or masculine. And make sure you have a product line that appeals to men to offer male guests on their way out.

Wellness Investment Trends

Men spend more on health and wellness than women

On average, men spend more on health and wellness per month than women do—the average man spends $1,661 per year while the average woman spends $1,278. This is consistent across all verticals included in the survey. Men spend an average of $543 per year on fitness, while women only spend an average of $336 per year. When it comes to grooming and beauty services, we found that men also spend more, with an average of $610 per year, versus women, who spend an average of $593 per year. On top of that, men spend an average of $508 a year on integrative health, while women only spend an average of $349.

Men spend more on health and wellness than women

Takeaways for your business

Because men spend, on average, more money per year on health and wellness, they have the potential to be your most profitable customers. With that said, it may be time to revisit your marketing plan to consider how much of your new customer strategy focuses on men. Not sure where to get started? Download our template to creating a marketing plan and budget for your business.

Now that you have a better understanding of how your male clientele can make an enormous impact on your bottom line, it is time to start putting this knowledge to use.

About the author:

bailey clark headshot

Bailey Clark

Marketing Content Specialist

Mindbody

Bailey Clark is a serial optimist whose passion for marketing lies within creating authentic connections to make the world happier and healthier. As a San Diego native, her favorite pastimes are surfing, F45, practicing yoga, meditation, and really any opportunity to soak up the sun.

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