Australian companies are racing to develop apps and build communities as the wellness industry grows increasingly competitive

© Provided by Business Insider Australia Nicole-McInnes-Leading-Ladies-Photo-by-Hipster-Mum-1J8A9052

  • Established companies in health and fitness have transformed their offerings to join the burgeoning holistic wellness space.
  • Along with startups like homegrown fitness app Sweat and fitness influencers, businesses now market products and services that go beyond physical appearance.
  • The wellness market is now centred around apps and building a “thriving online community”.
  • Visit Business Insider Australia’s homepage for more stories.

© Provided by Business Insider Australia MMC_BI

As the health and wellness industry has exploded in recent years, with tech-driven organisations like Peloton and Sweat capturing market share and reshaping the sector, established brands have rushed to adapt, pivoting to embrace a new approach that values a more holistic approach to health. 

© Provided by Business Insider Australia SB014-1

One notable example is Weight Watchers, the U.S.-based company that was a household name in the ’90s, but fell out of favour in the early 2000s. 

As the Western wellness industry transformed its values to align with the ideals of the body positivity movement, companies like Weight Watchers, which prioritised rapid weight loss through a system of calorie counting and “points”, lost business and brand equity.

In the past five years, however, Weight Watchers — which has a global reach that spans Australia and New Zealand — has rebranded as WW, launched an app, and has been racing to sell its rebrand in a digitally savvy and highly competitive market.

Nicole McInnes, director of marketing for WW in Australia and New Zealand, has been behind that push in Australia. 

“Our strategy is in really making sure people understand what WW now stands for, which is more around holistic health and wellness of everybody whatever shape or size they are,” McInnes said. 

Because the company has such strong brand recognition, it has had to battle to ensure that people know “it’s no longer just a meeting company” but a “health and wellness app” in line with other major brands.

There’s an app for that 

The contemporary fitness market is now centred around apps, whether the core product is a piece of equipment, like Peloton, or a workout tracker, like Australian workout app Sweat, which was recently sold for an eye watering $400 million to global tech fitness company iFIT.

In a survey conducted in 2018, 47% of Australian respondents said they used a health app. 

Fitness influencers have also flooded this market, creating their own custom fitness apps as an additional income stream.

These apps generally mirror content offered by the larger fitness companies, with instructional videos performed by the influencer, as well as recipes and other resources.

And as tech-driven fitness has grown, the weight loss industry, which was once big business, has lost out. 

The market size of the weight loss services industry in Australia declined 1.5% per year on average between 2016 and 2021, as it has faced competition from gyms and a new wave of health and fitness companies.

It’s the reason why WW and others have pivoted to rebrand themselves to align with new breed companies. 

© Provided by Business Insider Australia Nicole McInnes, director of marketing for WW in Australia and New Zealand.

McInnes said WW is now primarily a “digital health and wellness solution”, with nearly 80% of Australian and New Zealand members following the program purely via the app.

This strategy is working for the company, she said, with over 100,000 active users in the ANZ region, and a digital subscriber base that has grown more than 25% in 2020. 

Retreat from extremes

Libby Grey, marketing and operations manager at Michelle Bridges Group, told Business Insider Australia that the industry as a whole has “moved away from being solely focused on weight loss, counting calories and the ‘all or nothing’ approach”. 

Even for the company, which began 11 years ago following the success of personal trainer Michelle Bridges’ gruelling 12-week weight-loss program on the Network Ten reality show The Biggest Loser, marketing around weight loss as an end goal is no longer the leading message. 

“The industry now focuses more on total wellbeing and a balanced mentality,” Grey said. 

Since its founding, the company has exploded into a full-scale health brand spanning an app and 16 programs dedicated to specific categories, catering to men, pregnant women and the over 50s to name but a few.

Grey said the expansion of services offered went beyond the company’s growth. Offering digital services was now essential to succeed in the space, she said.

© Provided by Business Insider Australia

Tushar Menon, co-founder of health food company My Muscle Chef (MYMC), told Business Insider Australia the range of people that buy their products has expanded dramatically since the early days of the business, which he founded with his brother in 2013.

“As a full-time worker and regular gym goer, much of my night was spent in the kitchen meal-prepping,” Menon said. 

His company was born out of a desire to find pre-made meals geared toward specific fitness goals in a market dominated by “generic brands for middle-aged people who wanted to lose weight”.

“There was nothing out there for people who wanted performance nutrition to fuel their workouts like me.”

While the company began as a solution to Menon’s desire to create a product that would meet his needs — protein-packed premade meals that would help him reach his physical goals at the gym — over time, the company has expanded its perspective around who its customers could be. 

“In the beginning, we thought our primary customer was mostly interested in meals that would improve their athletic performance and muscle gains, so we started with a mindset that combined the best of a personal trainer and a chef,” Menon said. 

But the space has evolved as more high quality options have come on the market. 

The customer base for pre-made, healthy food has expanded from gym junkies. And the busy professionals who might have once stocked their fridges with frozen meals now expect a premium product. 

“Eight years on, we’ve transformed our menu to include options suited to a much broader variety of fitness goals and outcomes,” Menon said.

“Today, MYMC doesn’t just cater to traditional gym-goers; in fact almost 50% of our customers are women, and 60% of our customers choose MYMC for convenience.”

People expect more from health and fitness companies

McInnes said WW’s overhaul was based on an awareness that consumers now expect more from brands. 

As a result, what were formerly known as its members are now a “thriving online community”. The WW app interface mimics Instagram and has new features like 24-hour access to nutrition coaches and a mindfulness program created in collaboration with mediation company Headspace.

The program was designed to speak to consumers that are looking for services that take a holistic approach to weight loss, McInnes said. 

“We added in meditations from Headspace back in 2018, alongside the rebrand towards holistic wellness, because we knew that we just have to get people thinking positively about themselves to be successful in the journey,” she said.  

Tracking sleep was another addition to the program. “Sleep is another thing that really impacts weight loss and wellness, so putting sleep into the app was really important so people could just be mindful that their whole health is impacted — and can be tracked and improved with this app.”

The Michelle Bridges Group has taken a similar route, Grey said, with an app that offers 1,200 recipes and “hundreds of workout videos that we continue to add to”.

© Provided by Business Insider Australia

Menon said MYMC has taken on a “coach” mentality in how it sells and markets to its consumers, with a newsletter, blog and curated “goal-based” plans that seek to educate and personalise its offering. 

This mindset shift has “manifested in shifting our focus to talking about the holistic benefits of good nutrition,” Menon said. “We’re really focused on instilling body positivity by providing accessible and nutritious meals to support every goal and not just providing fuel for workouts.”

He said this approach is part of what’s behind the company’s growth in recent years — significantly expanding its product range and adding breakfast, snack and drink options.

“We are well established in food and fitness, but our reach [now] extends beyond those worlds,” Menon explained. “We focus on our personal relationships with our customers.

“We’re not just a ready-made meal service, but there to give customers the support and inspiration they need in order to live an active and healthy life.” 

Internet Explorer Channel Network
News Related

OTHER NEWS

DeSantis to call special session of legislature to fight vaccine mandates

© The Hill DeSantis to call special session of legislature to fight vaccine mandates Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (R) announced Thursday that he is calling a special session of the ... Read more »

Reports: 76ers' Ben Simmons skips workout, could be out indefinitely

Philadelphia 76ers coach Doc Rivers called the drama involving wantaway and suspended All-Star guard Ben Simmons a “predicament” before his team went and defeated the New Orleans Pelicans 117-97 in ... Read more »

House antitrust leaders meet with Facebook whistleblower

The leaders of the House Judiciary antitrust subcommittee met with Facebook whistleblower Frances Haugen on Thursday afternoon, two people familiar with the meeting told POLITICO. © Matt McClain-Pool/Getty Images Subcommittee ... Read more »

13 bestselling space heaters to keep you warm and cozy this winter

Shop TODAY is editorially independent. Our editors selected these deals and items because we think you will enjoy them at these prices. If you purchase something through our links, we ... Read more »

Trump's new media venture is feeling the love from investors

Former President Trump is once again vowing to set up his own answer to Twitter and Facebook. After being bounced off major platforms for inciting the Jan. 6 attack on ... Read more »

Ghislaine Maxwell's request for secretive jury selection shot down by judge

Judge Alison Nathan made the decision on Ghislaine Maxwell’s juror questionnaires. Joe Schildhorn/Patrick McMullan via Getty Images A Manhattan federal judge shot down a request by Ghislaine Maxwell’s attorneys to ... Read more »

What the Season 11 Launch Trailer Reveals About the New Gun Coming to Apex Legends

The Season 11: Escape launch trailer for Apex Legends premiered earlier today giving players their first official look at some of the content coming to the game on Nov. 2. ... Read more »

First Glimpse of the New Apex Legends Map

The Apex Legends: Escape launch trailer has just been released, giving players their first good look at the new Tropical Island map and some of the new content coming with ... Read more »

Winter forecast: What to expect

The devastating drought in Southern California is expected to continue or worsen this winter, with drier-than-average conditions forecast for the hard-hit Southwest, including Southern California, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric ... Read more »

Winnipeg Blue Bombers can clinch first in West Division with victory over B.C. Lions

The Winnipeg Blue Bombers can ensure Saturday that the path to the ’21 Grey Cup in the West Division will go through IG Field. © Provided by The Canadian Press ... Read more »

N.L. playwright a finalist for Governor General's Literary Award

© Mark Cumby/CBC Paul David Power has been working as a writer, actor and director for the past 25 years. His play Crippled debuted in 2018 and was published by ... Read more »

CNN 10 - October 22, 2021

October 22, 2021 BLURBS 1. Starting November 8, what will be required of all non-Americans seeking to travel to the United States (in addition to a recent Covid test)? 2. ... Read more »

Our Place's cult hit Always Pan and Perfect Pot now available in limited-edition colourway

Our Place’s cult hit Always Pan and the Perfect Pot have just launched in a new limited-edition colourway: a gorgeous dusty blue hue named Blanch. © Christopher Beyer Our Place’s ... Read more »

Public ways should not be occupied for protests, reiterates SC

© Provided by Hindustan Times The apex court had on October 4 issued notice to 43 farmer unions on an interim application filed by the Haryana government seeking their impleadment ... Read more »

Bigg Boss 15 written update Day 19: Karan Kundrra, Tejasswi Prakash enter main house, Jay Bhanushali ruins Pratik Sehajpal's task

© Provided by Zee News New Delhi: Bigg Boss 15, which began on October 2, continues to witness ugliest arguments and fights among the housemates. On Thursday’s episode. Karan Kundrra ... Read more »

Internet providers collect "staggering" amounts of data -- U.S. FTC chair

People look at their smartphones at the Rockefeller center in New York City WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Internet service providers collect a “staggering” amount of detailed data on consumers, Federal Trade ... Read more »

Berner Stadtrat setzt Zeichen gegen sexualisierte Gewalt

Die Stadt Bern soll ihre Anstrengungen gegen sexualisierte Gewalt und Belästigung im öffentlichen Raum verstärken. Das Stadtparlament stellt sich fast einmütig hinter diese Forderung. © Foto: Christian Zingg (Keystone-SDA) Der ... Read more »

Driver in 100-mph chase slams into school bus with 50 kids on board, NC cops say

A car slammed into a packed school bus, ending a 100-mph police chase in North Carolina, officials said. One of the 50 children on the bus reportedly went to a ... Read more »

U.S. administers over 411 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines - CDC

FILE PHOTO: Cal State Dominguez Hills student Yomaria De Santiago receives a Pfizer BioNTech coronavirus disease (COVID-19) vaccination in Carson, Los Angeles (Reuters) – The United States has administered 411,010,650 ... Read more »

Thursday morning UK news briefing: Household mixing may be banned under Covid 'Plan C'

Christmas Covid boosters David Amess Sajid Javid said the Government would not implement “Plan B” measures such as mandatory masks, advice to work from home, and vaccine passports “at this ... Read more »

Good news! Google to cut commission from 30% to 15% on Google Play Store

Alphabet Inc.’s Google is slashing the fees it takes from subscription services on its app store following pressure from developers and lawmakers.  Beginning Jan. 1, the Google Play Store will ... Read more »

Squid Game and K Culture's phenomenal success- is Bollywood losing out?

© Provided by Business Today Squid Game and K Culture’s phenomenal success- is Bollywood losing out? If you haven’t heard of Squid Game yet then that is only because you ... Read more »

Razer's smart RGB face mask is now available for $100

It took the better part of a year, but Razer’s smart face mask is finally available. You can buy the Zephyr either by itself for $100 or a $150 Starter ... Read more »

Android 101: how to free up space on your phone

It can happen all too easily, especially if you’ve got an Android phone with less than 128GB of storage: one day, you try to install a cool new game or ... Read more »

There Weren't Enough Black Food Festivals, So This Couple Started Their Own

© Photo by Peter Taylor Charlotte, NC- July 22d- Greg and Subrina Collier, owners of Leah and Louise in Charlotte, NC. Photographed in Charlotte, NC on July 22, 2020. Photo ... Read more »

These Are Leanne Ford's Go-To White Paints

In case you missed it, Leanne Ford is doing a gut reno on an adorable bungalow. While she’s elbow deep in demolition, we checked in on the latest development: materials ... Read more »

Columbia's Fall Sale Is Overflowing With Unbelievably Good Deals on Winter Jackets

If you’re starting to feel the temperatures become uncomfortably cool, you’re not alone. Already, New York City’s windchill has proven too much for my Los Angeles roots to handle, even ... Read more »

Woman charged in submarine spy case to remain locked up

© Provided by Associated Press These booking photos released Oct. 9, 2021, by the West Virginia Regional Jail and Correctional Facility Authority show Jonathan Toebbe and his wife, Diana Toebbe. ... Read more »

Five veterans quit Kyrsten Sinema advisory team calling her an ‘obstacle to progress'

© AP Kyrsten Sinema – AP Kyrsten Sinema has been accused of “hanging her constituents out to dry” by a group of five military veterans who quit her advisory board ... Read more »

Coronavirus live: UK sees daily cases rise to over 50,000; WHO warns indoor socialising driving infections

© Photograph: Kirill Kudryavtsev/AFP/Getty Images A member of Russia’s emergencies ministry wearing protective gear adjusts his gas mask while disinfecting Moscow’s Leningradsky railway station. LIVE – Updated at 20:42 Indoor ... Read more »

Beyonce's New Song “Be Alive” Teased in ‘King Richard' Trailer

© Courtesy of Telluride Film Festival KING RICHARD Warner Bros. has released another trailer for its upcoming biographical drama King Richard, featuring Beyonce’s new original song “Be Alive.” Will Smith ... Read more »

Nicaragua detains business union leaders as crackdown widens

Nicaragua on Thursday arrested the top two leaders of the country’s business owners’ union, police said, bringing the number of government opponents detained ahead of next month’s election to 39. ... Read more »

Biden says the January 6 insurrection was 'about white supremacy,' and that hate doesn't go away, 'it only hides'

© Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images President Joe Biden. Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images President Joe Biden said the January 6 insurrection is part of the US’s legacy of white supremacy. The insurrection “was ... Read more »

Great location, outdated design: 4 things to know about the InterContinental Montreal

© Provided by The Points Guy MSN has partnered with The Points Guy for our coverage of credit card products. MSN and The Points Guy may receive a commission from ... Read more »

Madagascar Is Reopening to American Travelers — What to Know Before You Go

The island nation of Madagascar will once again welcome Americans, allowing them to experience the country’s coastlines, rain forests, lemurs, and more. © Provided by Travel + Leisure Jeff Photo/500px/Getty ... Read more »

Bake Off winner Candice Brown says her mental health has deteriorated in the last two years

GREAT British Bake Off champion Candice Brown has revealed her mental health has deteriorated in the last two years, with her OCD worse than ever. The baker, who won the ... Read more »

A New Eternals Featurette Gives Us Our Introduction To The Team

Marvel Studios/Disney The release date for “The Eternals” is coming ever closer. Unlike the most recent Marvel movies, this one focuses on a whole new set of superheroes, and if ... Read more »

Venus And Serena Beat The Odds In A New Trailer For King Richard

Warner Bros. Although it might not be getting as some of the other blockbusters rounding out 2021, “King Richard” could turn out to be as scrappy and competitive during the ... Read more »

Lottery results and numbers: Set For Life draw tonight, October 21, 2021

THE National Lottery Set For Life numbers are in and it's time to find out if you've won the top prize of £10,000 every month for 30 years. Could tonight's ... Read more »
On free-english-test.com you will find lots of free English exam practice materials to help you improve your English skills: grammar, listening, reading, writing, ielts, toeic