Fitness Industry Roundup: Sustainability & Consumer Marketing

    The fitness industry looks to innovate with contemporary, post-COVID facilities and services. And we look at how marketing to consumers has changed.

    The health and fitness industry is amidst a revolutionary time in history. Things will never be as they were exactly, but that leaves plenty of room to improve services, facilities, member relations, and more. This week’s roundup dials in on what brands are doing now to keep gym-goers safe, increase consumer confidence, and keep the fitness industry in demand.

    Gold’s Gym Flaunts New Sustainable Facility Concept in Berlin

    Over the past nine months, RSG Group GmbH, owner of Gold’s Gym, researched and designed a sustainable 55,000-square-foot flagship facility to portray the “perfect gym.” The Berlin, Germany, facility is the world’s first commercial gym with a LEED Platinum certification. As reported in Club Industry, the campus features a VIP performance center, the Gold’s Gym Academy—a training and education institute—and equipment supplied by Gym80. During the facility’s conception, RSG Group made it a point to honor Gold’s Gym’s iconic legacy and produce a gym that adheres to a post-COVID world. “Our Berlin flagship represents the contemporary redefinition of the brand and product concept to the highest degree of perfection, and it sets the stage for a whole new ‘golden era’ for Gold’s Gym,” said Rainer Schaller, founder and CEO of RSG Group.

    Take a virtual tour of the new facility.

    American Business Awards Recognizes Upper Hand as Most Innovative Company

    One year after including fitness businesses in its software, IHRSA member Upper Hand has won a Bronze Stevie Award as the Most Innovative Tech Company at the 19th Annual American Business Awards. In response to COVID-19, Upper Hand created a UP Financial Suite that allows flexible payment options and video analysis tools for virtual training. Kevin MacCauley, founder and CEO of Upper Hand, said, “The future is incredibly bright for industry businesses, and we intend to continue to drive a world-class software experience for our customers and their clients.” The American Business Awards will celebrate Upper Hand and other Stevie Award winners during a virtual ceremony on Wednesday, June 30.

    Read the full release.

    Health Club Operators Display Confidence for the Fitness Industry’s Future

    According to Fortune, multiple fitness brands are prepared and determined to succeed after the pandemic’s harsh impact. “The second half of this year is going to feel like January all over again. We have pent-up demand,” says Todd Magazine, CEO of Blink Fitness. Due to the shift to virtual fitness, Blink launched a Facebook Live page and solo virtual personal training to stay competitive and keep the brand in demand during shutdowns. And for the first time, MX3 Fitness, a San Francisco, CA-based fitness studio, has rolled out monthly memberships and now offers outdoor workouts to adhere to market demand. “The idea of stepping back into a packed, big-boxed gym, where maybe a thousand people touch the same thing in a day, that’s going to be intimidating,” said Dave Karraker, MX3 Fitness co-founder. “And that creates an opportunity for us.”

    Learn how other health clubs are making it through the pandemic.

    For Crunch Fitness, Marketing to Consumers Isn’t Universal

    Crunch Fitness is shifting its marketing strategy to depict regional circumstances and restrictions to increase consumer confidence and regain former members. For instance, areas with mask mandates, including New York and San Francisco, will see masked gym-goers “Practicing Safe Sets.” For those regions that don’t require mask-wearing—such as Daytona, FL—ads run maskless. Chad Waetzig, Crunch's EVP of Marketing and Branding, told Morning Brew, “Our business has always been very hyper-local in terms of our marketing approach, and that's probably more true than ever before.” Waetzig notes that safety and cleanliness will remain a priority in its messaging, and, so far, it’s working—from February to March 2021, visits rose 30%, and membership sales increased 5.6%.

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    Find out more about how Crunch is approaching marketing.

    Has your health or fitness-related business been featured in the news recently? We want to know! Send a link to any news article or video that highlighted your business to pr@ihrsa.org, and we may include it in a future issue of the Fitness Industry Roundup.

    Author avatar

    Sami Smith

    Sami Smith is IHRSA's Communications and Public Relations Assistant. On a typical day, she delivers communications and creates content for IHRSA's advocacy efforts, while working to shape IHRSA and the fitness industry's public image on multiple platforms. Outside of the office, you can find her traveling to new areas, indulging in food, or participating in just about any sport.