Before starting any business, there is always research that needs to be carried out; calculating demand, identifying potential competitors (or a lack of), finding a location and ensuring you have strong financials to support the beginning months or years. However, when it comes to opening a business that is health-orientated, there is a bit more research to be done before you can take those eager first steps.
For the business-savvy entrepreneur that is considering starting up their own health-based company, we have detailed some helpful tips to consider before starting to splash the cash on the general business necessities.
Make Sure You Can Back It Up
Anything health or fitness related these days needs to have the support from an audience before the general market will even look twice at your service or product. It’s no hidden truth that getting started is the hardest of the business climbs, but it’s made much easier when you have confidence in your own knowledge, education and accreditations.
For instance, if you are thinking of opening a dedicated fitness studio offering one type of sport or exercise, be it powerlifting, CrossFit or even Zumba – you need to be able to support WHY your business is required and the proven benefits that come from joining your space.
It’s not good enough or appropriate to make claims that cannot be successfully proven or supported with clear evidence. For instance, no one is going to join a Zumba studio because the instructor did it once with a cold and claims to have never gone down with an illness since!
Deeply Assess Your Potential Audience or Clearly Define It
When starting a business, entrepreneurs often have a type of person in mind that contributes to their ‘customer profile’ and makes up their intended target audience. It can be easy to become blinded around your target customer profile, simply focusing on the people you want your business to appeal to, rather than extending that view to the people your business could also attract. This can quickly backfire on new businesses that face a rush of customers that they failed to anticipate and cannot accommodate, causing a loss of business and leading to poor word-of-mouth marketing.
If your business is targeted to a certain audience and cannot accommodate customers outside this specific customer profile, it’s important to make this extremely clear in marketing materials and press releases. For example, if you are opening a sports centre intended for children, this needs to appear bold and clear across all your marketing materials and clearly defined in any of your About Us blurbs that appear prior to opening. Just like the Playball Programme, with centres available in Fulham and across London, they clearly define the age groups they work with on their home page and across the website.
Competition Is Good but Don’t Think of It as Cutthroat
Competition in the corporate market is good for business, it creates an interest in the market while also ensuring businesses remain competitive and customers can get the best service at the best price. However, there are many business owners that look at their competition as only that, competition, when really your competition should become your friend and support. If businesses worked more closely together, everyone would benefit and knowledge can be shared – ensuring the customer always receives the benefits, word-of-mouth is positive, and businesses remains steady for you all.
Of course, an over-saturated market is always going to struggle unless the demand is unrelenting but even coffee shops have started to see dwindling profits in reason years, especially independents that cannot compete with the nearby national chains that occupy every street corner.
Running a business is hard work, there is a lot to consider and you’ve always got to try and be one step ahead of the curve to stay relevant and the top of people’s picks. That said, it’s also extremely rewarding, especially when your focus is helping customers be better versions of themselves or helping someone get their life back on track. Make every decision with careful planning and always have a back-up contingency plan and most importantly, do your research!