The New Consumer - How Millennials Will Impact The Fitness Industry

I write about how industries are being turned on their heads through three key drivers: advancing technologies, globalism and shifting demographics. Leaders in the fitness and health club industry have focused a lot on shifting demographics, namely the baby boomers. However, a potentially more impactful group is looming out there. The Millennials, also known as Generation Y or the Echo Boomers, comprise ages between 18-30. Some argue this age range a bit depending on who you talk to. I've got two children (almost 3) who fit the mold and believe me when I tell you, thier belief systems and behaviors are going to have a big impact on all businesses in the coming decade including health clubs and the fitness industry in general. What will it mean ? In a nutshell it means you better evaluate changing how your business operates to meet their needs.

As the infographic below reflects, Millennials are very in tune with technology. They see technology as making their lives better and more convenient. Therefore things like scheduling online, tweeting a brand or transacting business using a smartphone is what these customers are going to expect to be able to do with any and all brands. You might want to check out the McCann Worldgroup global study, the Truth About Youth, to learn more about the common views of global Millennials.

What is incredible about this demographic group is its massive size. This is the largest demographic group since 1960 to emerge and there are over 80 million of them in the US alone. Here are 47 interesting facts about this group, including that 80% had used an online service in the past 30 days.

So tell me Bryan O'Rourke, what do you see happening as the result of the Millennials increasing influence ? What impact will it have on the fitness and health club industry ? I think a lot as more of these folks enter affluency and demand that they engage fitness brands and clubs in the physical and digital space.

About the author:

Bryan O’Rourke is a health club industry expert, technologist, financier, and shareholder and executive in several fitness companies. He consults with numerous global brands, serves as a member of the GGFA Think Tank is Chair of the Medical Fitness Association’s Education Committee and a partner in the Flywheel Group. To learn more contact Bryan here today .


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Globalism's Impact On The Fitness & Health Club Industries

Its already May and with nearly half of 2011 over I've had the fortune of traveling to China, Australia and across the U.S. visiting major players and participants in the global health and fitness industry. This has led me to a question, "How is globalization impacting the health club and fitness industries?" But more importantly, I ask "are our leaders and organizations doing enough to work together globally ?"

In speaking with business and industry leaders there certainly is great variety on their view points regarding collaboration globally in health clubs, fitness and even wellness. Some of these leaders are doing the hard work and heavy lifting while I think others are more focused on maintaining the status quo, often out of fear.

As a fitness industry expert, I reflect on trends and seek to understand how these will impact our businesses and organizations. In his recent book, World 3.0, Global Prosperity and How To Achieve It , Professor Pankaj Ghemawat explains some important concepts that resonated with me. I wonder, is all of the global leadership in the fitness and health club industries collaborating in a manner to best grow the global pie ?  Are we adopting the World 3.0 view ? (Take this test to see what your view is). Watch the video below and tell me, Bryan O'Rourke, are the leaders in the fitness and health club industries working together well enough ? Is this helping or hurting the growth potential for fitness, health clubs and wellness in general ? P.S. My thanks to Will Phillips for our chat at IHRSA 2011 around this and other topics that inspired me to do something about it.