With new habits inspired by the pandemic still going strong and inflation thinning our wallets, wellness is taking a new shape. Our collective focus on wellness is the same as it’s been for the last few years, but cost is more of a barrier and that’s causing a paradigm shift to a new “do it my way” approach that allows for less spending and more personalization. Against the current backdrop, here are five wellness trends marketers should be paying attention to.
1. WFH (Workout From Home) is here to stay
400 million downloads in 2021. While some consumers have returned to gyms (one survey suggests 30 percent of people aren’t renewing their memberships), fitness apps continue to appeal because of their accessibility and ability to offer real personalization. With workouts ranging from five minutes to over an hour, users can stack classes and instantly build custom routines around their schedules. Just look at the numbers: The at-home fitness market, including equipment and apparel, is projected to reach $17B by 2030. Like hybrid work, hybrid fitness is becoming the norm.
2. For runners, it’s a marathon—and a sprint.
More people are running than ever before—an estimated 20 million new runners have hit the pavement since the pandemic, says major retailer Fleet Feet, thanks to social distancing and a need to get outside. Going forward, even more people are expected to take part in this recession-proof activity. M Booth recently partnered with Brooks Running and Stranger Things actor David Harbour on “Its Your Run,” a marketing campaign to champion runners’ individuality and encourage them to find their best run—in whatever creative ways they want. With so much choice in the running category, marketers need to make a stronger case for why consumers should open their wallets. Their content should center around emotional and functional benefits and communicate attributes that will make consumers’ lives a little easier when they’re on the run.
3. Grocery lists are getting chopped.
Inflationary pressure may not be deterring consumer spending as much as anticipated, but it is changing priorities. FMI found that about 25 percent of shoppers are buying less expensive produce because of inflation, turning to more conventional canned and even frozen fruits and vegetables over organic produce. And 40 percent of consumers say that they are buying more store brands due to high prices. It’s clear that even as price resistance becomes a bigger factor, consumers are focused on wellness: according to Nielsen, consumers say they’re less likely to cut back on the foods they perceive as healthy, like rice, beans, pasta, dairy products, and fresh fruit and vegetables and more likely to cut back on things like alcohol, chocolate, and carbonated beverages. In response to these shifts, brands should focus on communicating what is a need-to-have over a nice-to-have, with a particular emphasis on wellness.
4. Nutrition is getting precise
. Beyond being particular about the foods they’re buying, people want to get granular and understand how specific ingredients impact their bodies. The microbiome has gained a lot of interest in recent years, and it’s just one aspect of the field of nutrigenomics, which looks at how food affects gene expression and allows people to understand which nutrients will best help them achieve their health goals. Companies like ZOE are allowing consumers to use continuous glucose monitoring (CGM) devices to understand exactly how their body responds to specific foods via changes in blood sugar levels. Brands should heed the call for more data on personalized nutrition.
5. Better sleep is the dream.
Sleeplessness is on the rise, says the Sleep Foundation, which can invite a host of health issues. About 50 million to 70 million Americans have sleep disorders, and one in three adults do not regularly get the recommended amount of uninterrupted sleep they need to protect their health. The desire for a good night’s sleep has driven up purchases of everything from new bedding and weighted blankets to air conditioners, fans, tech tools and sleep aid supplements, which are up an astounding 88 percent from three years ago.
Consumers are now spending $65 billion a year on sleep aids, a number that is expected to continue growing. Nature Made (an M Booth client) positioned its Wellblends line of supplements to stand out in the crowded sleep aid aisle by taking a personalized approach—each of its three new sleep aid products is tailored to meet a different issue; from falling asleep, to staying asleep longer, to falling back to sleep, allowing customers to choose what works for their specific needs, rather than taking a one-size-fits-all approach.
Brands can stand out in saturated spaces by offering personalized options and tailoring their messaging to individuals or tribes, not just a broad demographic. Let your consumers bellow, “I did it my way!”