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The Leisure Media Company Ltd | Fit Tech promotion
The Leisure Media Company Ltd | Fit Tech promotion
features

HCM People: Andrew Grill

Practical Futurist

Your marketing department will have to start writing ad copy for robots, not for humans. These digital agents will be gatekeepers, a bit like a PA. It’s already happening, so get ahead and start using it

Published in Health Club Management 2019 issue 8

Practical Futurist Andrew Grill spoke at Technogym’s 2019 Digital Transformation Event recently.

He shares insights with HCM
everyone in this industry wants to improve things for the consumer,” says Andrew Grill. “I’d like you to consider three benefits to embracing digital: efficiency, effectiveness, and disruption. With just a few changes, you can start using digital to create better experiences for customers, so they stick with you longer.”

“Disruption happens when there are profits to be made, when there’s new tech available, and consumer demand forces change,” he says. “Every company needs to disrupt itself if it wants to adapt.”

Live Customers Or Digital Agents?
Our smartphones already know about our preferences and our routines. Grill predicts we’re not far away from having “digital agents” in everyday life.

“Smartphone data plus developments in Artificial Intelligence will lead to the creation of digital agents,” he said. “These will take over the mundane, replicable chores of life. Your customers will soon use digital agents to book classes, or to ask about membership, for example.

“This means your marketing department will have to start writing ad copy for robots, not for humans. Digital agents will be gatekeepers, a bit like a PA. It’s already happening, so get ahead and start using it.”

Big Changes In Data
“Thanks to APIs, we can give other systems access to our data and let them process it. Make sure you can share data with anyone you work with. Do you have an API, and do you ask if partners and suppliers have an API strategy?“

“On the data front, GDPR is forcing us to sift through data to see what is relevant,” he said. “Think about the value exchange – why should customers give you their data? They have to trust you and know you’ll offer them something in return.”

The Customer Journey
“Data is powerful, and the customer knows it,” he says. “They can leave a gym any time, taking their data with them. This gives them the upper hand. Forward thinking facilities will use data to create a consumer experience that keeps people coming back.”

“Operators capture an enviable amount of data, but not everyone knows what to do with it - or even how much they have,” says Grill. “It goes beyond which products are popular, how long people stay, and what time of day different areas of the gym are busy.

“At the end of 2016, Transport for London carried out a trial, tracking travellers’ wifi use on the tube network. In just four weeks, they captured valuable data about journey times, routes, and commuter decisions. What could you learn from analysing wifi use in your facility?”

“A lot of data is proprietary, and you can only access it by asking the customer’s permission,” he explains. “This is a compelling reason for gym owners to buy digital. How can you work with fitness kit, and digital platforms like Technogym mywellness cloud, to access data and make it work for you and your customer?

“The more you can know about your users between gym visits, the more you can give them a reason to stay. Use data to make the entire customer journey work seamlessly, so they have no reason to go anywhere else.

“With a focus on increasing the length of gym memberships, data offers us a powerful way to create personalised customer journeys to extend retention and encourage loyalty.”

Four things to do right now
Andrew Grill’s checklist

1. Digital Diversity
Make sure your business hires people with digital skills at management level. They need a fundamental understanding of how digital can change your business, and can tell you how millennials (and older customers) are thinking about digital innovations.

2. Educate yourself
To get digital, you need to be digital. So get curious about this stuff. Don’t be put off by it. Challenge yourself to learn more about upcoming trends and digital terms, rather than getting scared off by the hype.

3. Data Audit
Data is powerful, and you can probably be making more of it. Understand what data you have, what you need, and what your customers have.

4. Futureproof your business
Make sure you have connectivity between your own systems (apps, fitness platforms, CRM) and those of your partners and suppliers. You need an API for easy data transfer.

Sign up here to get Fit Tech's weekly ezine and every issue of Fit Tech magazine free on digital.
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Users can easily identify which facilities in the UK are accessible to the disabled community
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We want to give our users an implantable tool that allows them to collect their health data at any time and in any setting
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New reality

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Many apps help people track their health, but Humanity founders Peter Ward and Michael Geer have put the focus on ageing, to help users to see the direct repercussions of their habits. They talk to Steph Eaves
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Two-way coaching

Content providers have been hugely active in the fit tech market since the start of the pandemic. We expect the industry to move on from delivering these services on a ‘broadcast-only’ basis as two-way coaching becomes the new USP
Fit Tech People

Laurent Petit

Co-founder, Active Giving
The future of sports and fitness are dependent on the climate. Our goal is to positively influence the future of our planet by instilling a global vision of wellbeing and a sense of collective action
Fit Tech People

Adam Zeitsiff

CEO, Intelivideo
We don’t just create the technology and bail – we support our clients’ ongoing hybridisation efforts
Fit Tech People

Anantharaman Pattabiraman

CEO and co-founder, Auro
When you’re undertaking fitness activities, unless you’re on a stationary bike, in most cases it’s not safe or necessary to be tied to a screen, especially a small screen
Fit Tech People

Mike Hansen

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We noticed a big gap in the market – customers needed better insights but also recommendations on what to do, whether that be customer acquisition, content creation, marketing and more
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In today's rapidly evolving fitness industry, where many online courses promise secret formulas for entrepreneurial success, the reality is that few provide the necessary knowledge to thrive in this fast-changing profession.
Study Active is a UK leading provider of health & fitness qualifications including Gym Instructing ...
For over 50 years Les Mills has been leading the way in fitness to inspire ...
Core Health & Fitness: level up your HIIT game
Core Health & Fitness
Looking to level up your HIIT game? Meet the dynamic duo that’s about to revolutionize your workouts: the StairMaster HIIT Rower and HIIT Ski! Read more
Get Fit Tech
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features

HCM People: Andrew Grill

Practical Futurist

Your marketing department will have to start writing ad copy for robots, not for humans. These digital agents will be gatekeepers, a bit like a PA. It’s already happening, so get ahead and start using it

Published in Health Club Management 2019 issue 8

Practical Futurist Andrew Grill spoke at Technogym’s 2019 Digital Transformation Event recently.

He shares insights with HCM
everyone in this industry wants to improve things for the consumer,” says Andrew Grill. “I’d like you to consider three benefits to embracing digital: efficiency, effectiveness, and disruption. With just a few changes, you can start using digital to create better experiences for customers, so they stick with you longer.”

“Disruption happens when there are profits to be made, when there’s new tech available, and consumer demand forces change,” he says. “Every company needs to disrupt itself if it wants to adapt.”

Live Customers Or Digital Agents?
Our smartphones already know about our preferences and our routines. Grill predicts we’re not far away from having “digital agents” in everyday life.

“Smartphone data plus developments in Artificial Intelligence will lead to the creation of digital agents,” he said. “These will take over the mundane, replicable chores of life. Your customers will soon use digital agents to book classes, or to ask about membership, for example.

“This means your marketing department will have to start writing ad copy for robots, not for humans. Digital agents will be gatekeepers, a bit like a PA. It’s already happening, so get ahead and start using it.”

Big Changes In Data
“Thanks to APIs, we can give other systems access to our data and let them process it. Make sure you can share data with anyone you work with. Do you have an API, and do you ask if partners and suppliers have an API strategy?“

“On the data front, GDPR is forcing us to sift through data to see what is relevant,” he said. “Think about the value exchange – why should customers give you their data? They have to trust you and know you’ll offer them something in return.”

The Customer Journey
“Data is powerful, and the customer knows it,” he says. “They can leave a gym any time, taking their data with them. This gives them the upper hand. Forward thinking facilities will use data to create a consumer experience that keeps people coming back.”

“Operators capture an enviable amount of data, but not everyone knows what to do with it - or even how much they have,” says Grill. “It goes beyond which products are popular, how long people stay, and what time of day different areas of the gym are busy.

“At the end of 2016, Transport for London carried out a trial, tracking travellers’ wifi use on the tube network. In just four weeks, they captured valuable data about journey times, routes, and commuter decisions. What could you learn from analysing wifi use in your facility?”

“A lot of data is proprietary, and you can only access it by asking the customer’s permission,” he explains. “This is a compelling reason for gym owners to buy digital. How can you work with fitness kit, and digital platforms like Technogym mywellness cloud, to access data and make it work for you and your customer?

“The more you can know about your users between gym visits, the more you can give them a reason to stay. Use data to make the entire customer journey work seamlessly, so they have no reason to go anywhere else.

“With a focus on increasing the length of gym memberships, data offers us a powerful way to create personalised customer journeys to extend retention and encourage loyalty.”

Four things to do right now
Andrew Grill’s checklist

1. Digital Diversity
Make sure your business hires people with digital skills at management level. They need a fundamental understanding of how digital can change your business, and can tell you how millennials (and older customers) are thinking about digital innovations.

2. Educate yourself
To get digital, you need to be digital. So get curious about this stuff. Don’t be put off by it. Challenge yourself to learn more about upcoming trends and digital terms, rather than getting scared off by the hype.

3. Data Audit
Data is powerful, and you can probably be making more of it. Understand what data you have, what you need, and what your customers have.

4. Futureproof your business
Make sure you have connectivity between your own systems (apps, fitness platforms, CRM) and those of your partners and suppliers. You need an API for easy data transfer.

Sign up here to get Fit Tech's weekly ezine and every issue of Fit Tech magazine free on digital.
Gallery
More features
Editor's letter

Into the fitaverse

Fitness is already among the top three markets in the metaverse, with new technology and partnerships driving real growth and consumer engagement that looks likely to spill over into health clubs, gyms and studios
Fit Tech people

Ali Jawad

Paralympic powerlifter and founder, Accessercise
Users can easily identify which facilities in the UK are accessible to the disabled community
Fit Tech people

Hannes Sjöblad

MD, DSruptive
We want to give our users an implantable tool that allows them to collect their health data at any time and in any setting
Fit Tech people

Jamie Buck

Co-founder, Active in Time
We created a solution called AiT Voice, which turns digital data into a spoken audio timetable that connects to phone systems
Profile

Fahad Alhagbani: reinventing fitness

Let’s live in the future to improve today
Opinion

Building on the blockchain

For small sports teams looking to compete with giants, blockchain can be a secret weapon explains Lars Rensing, CEO of Protokol
Innovation

Bold move

Our results showed a greater than 60 per cent reduction in falls for individuals who actively participated in Bold’s programme
App analysis

Check your form

Sency’s motion analysis technology is allowing users to check their technique as they exercise. Co-founder and CEO Gal Rotman explains how
Profile

New reality

Sam Cole, CEO of FitXR, talks to Fit Tech about taking digital workouts to the next level, with an immersive, virtual reality fitness club
Profile

Sohail Rashid

The app is free and it’s $40 to participate in one of our virtual events
Ageing

Reverse Ageing

Many apps help people track their health, but Humanity founders Peter Ward and Michael Geer have put the focus on ageing, to help users to see the direct repercussions of their habits. They talk to Steph Eaves
App analysis

Going hybrid

Workout Anytime created its app in partnership with Virtuagym. Workout Anytime’s Greg Maurer and Virtuagym’s Hugo Braam explain the process behind its creation
Research

Physical activity monitors boost activity levels

Researchers at the University of Copenhagen have conducted a meta analysis of all relevant research and found that the body of evidence shows an impact
Editor's letter

Two-way coaching

Content providers have been hugely active in the fit tech market since the start of the pandemic. We expect the industry to move on from delivering these services on a ‘broadcast-only’ basis as two-way coaching becomes the new USP
Fit Tech People

Laurent Petit

Co-founder, Active Giving
The future of sports and fitness are dependent on the climate. Our goal is to positively influence the future of our planet by instilling a global vision of wellbeing and a sense of collective action
Fit Tech People

Adam Zeitsiff

CEO, Intelivideo
We don’t just create the technology and bail – we support our clients’ ongoing hybridisation efforts
Fit Tech People

Anantharaman Pattabiraman

CEO and co-founder, Auro
When you’re undertaking fitness activities, unless you’re on a stationary bike, in most cases it’s not safe or necessary to be tied to a screen, especially a small screen
Fit Tech People

Mike Hansen

Managing partner, Endorphinz
We noticed a big gap in the market – customers needed better insights but also recommendations on what to do, whether that be customer acquisition, content creation, marketing and more
More features