Health, fitness, and beauty may be the sector headings, but the outcome is WELLNESS and never has this been more in the spotlight than in the past 2 ½ years. There has been considerable discussion in the media about the impact that the pandemic is having on our mental health.
A significant proportion of Australians experienced lower levels of wellbeing, higher levels of psychological distress, long periods of loneliness and social isolation.
Many of us have joked about our ‘Covid bodies’ and Covid not being kind to our health, fitness, and beauty regime but at the same time there has been significant increase in the use of social media as a way to connect during these periods of social distancing and isolation.
Now that we are coming out the other side, we have seen a rapid uptake in the number of ‘wellness services being used and within the franchise sector a number of new entrants focussed on helping people feel better about themselves.
Some parts of the population have been impacted financially both positively through government support and negatively through reduced working hours and income. But the common theme amongst both sides of the financially impacted is the desire to focus on their own wellbeing, looking after themselves more and treating themselves in a healthier way.
During lockdown many of these services took a beating but they are coming back strong, and the general population is embracing the need to look after ourselves better and treat ourselves in a healthier way and this has given rise to the early stages of a booming sector and there’s never been a better time to get into a business within this wellness category.
Mental health is a key component of overall health and wellbeing (WHO 2013). There has been a significant increase in mental health issues brought about by Covid 19 and the associated impact of restrictions that were implemented, this is no better represented than observing the significant increase in MBS-subsidised mental health-related services that were process between 16 March 2020 and 9 January 2022, with almost 25 million services were processed.
The government has done a good job by investing more funds into this sector, but the general population has also recognised the need to look after themselves better and this where we are seeing the surge in use of the Wellness sector.
Reinvention is the key for every business in this new Post Pandemic world, what worked pre-covid may not necessarily work in this new world. Businesses must change their model and services to maintain relevance and open new potential markets focussed on improving overall wellness for a broader market, after all we have all been impacted by this pandemic and the fallout from it.
Personal care franchises like spas, beauty salons, and massage therapy centres are seeing rapid growth by bringing the cost of pampering yourself down to a level that average people can afford.
As franchises like one of our newly franchised clients, Jun Lin (Traditional Massage & Oriental Spa) become a staple in most cities, franchisees are branching out even more into niche markets that serve growing needs.
The personal grooming businesses like barbershops and another of our clients, Pores X that services the skin care market for the male population, making skin treatments easy, affordable, and fast.
Services that used to be available only at exclusive day spas that cost hundreds of dollars and took an entire day can now be enjoyed on your lunch hour for a fraction of the cost. Pores X target young males and the male market offering them a subscription model for skincare that can be delivered within 15 minutes in the convenience of your local shopping centre, removing the stigma of men having to go to traditional beauty salons.
The Fitness Industry was decimated during covid and had to pivot to an online business model until the market opened back up, this has changed the fitness space significantly, whilst many gyms may not make it, those that do will be those that reinvent themselves by creating pandemic proof businesses and doing fitness more holistically.
Beginning with the baby boom generation, more people have come to understand the importance of lifelong fitness and have devoted themselves to staying in shape. Additionally, awareness has been growing about the role of nutrition in overall health and wellness.
New franchises that combine fitness education and training with nutritional counselling and product sales are beginning to gain popularity among a public looking for help in its quest for optimal health.
FITNESS & HEALTH
There are over 8000 gyms in Australia and New Zealand with over 32% of the population having a gym membership and nearly 50% of the population participating in regular exercise, we know there’s a demand to fitness and health related offerings. We have seen the meteoric rise of functional fitness and 24/7 gyms, so get cut through in this sector, operators need to differentiate themselves and take this sector to a new level.
Fitillion is Australia’s newest and most innovative gym franchise, Fitillion introduces personalised team training to both the studio and the home gym environments. Each member receives customised workouts for their skill level and fitness goal, as well as a tailored meal plan, with recipes & shopping lists, or home-delivered meals. To stay on track with their fitness goal and body transformation journey, each member receives a Fitillion home smart scale, which provides industry-leading accuracy for body fat and muscle mass readings.
“Four gruelling years of software design, industrial engineering and sports science have made all of this possible. To Fitillion franchisees the automation means less admin, lower running costs and higher profitability than other gym brands, so that they can focus on the most important stuff, like hiring great instructors and growing a community of motivated members.”
With the continued rise of social media, image is important, but more importantly we all deserve a little pampering, the ability to take some time out and do something for ourselves. Google Search Trends shows a 250% increase in self-care related searches. Men and women of all age ranges believe that self-care is an important part of making healthier lifestyle choices and many of them believe that self-care practices have an impact on their overall well-being.
Whether it’s a mobile nail salon like Nail call founded by Heidi Powrie who brings the experience to homes and workplaces, or the self-tanning phenomenon of The Tan Lounge founded by Charley Costin, where they offer a subscription model where you can get an affordable and amazing tan whenever you want, that’s right 24/7 for one low subscription monthly cost.
“In a country where one of the leading cancers is skin cancer, providing a space for people to get their bronze on without the life damaging affects is one of the things I’m incredibly passionate about.
At Tan Lounge, we pride ourselves on being inclusive for all body types, all genders, and all occupations. We see people from all walks of life come through our doors whether they’re a mum, working in corporate, modelling and acting or even a tradie – each one finds something important in their tanning routine each one feels better walking out than when they did walking in. and it is so much more than a tan.”
The key to success in this Wellness sector is being innovative and holistic in your approach to the wellbeing of people, the most successful businesses and franchises are those that recognise that these three once standalone sectors now need to be integrated and that Health, Fitness and Beauty are all linked and those that can incorporate the three into one business model stand the best chance of success. That’s not to say to say that you can’t have a standalone, niche business within the sector but if you do, you need to do it better than anyone else.