LONDON, United Kingdom — On Thursday 28th June we presented the Welltodo Summit, our annual industry event bringing together over 300 business leaders, industry experts, investors and founders of the world’s leading wellness brands, for a powerful conversation about the business of wellness.
Our most forward-thinking and comprehensive exploration of the wellness industry to date, the Welltodo Summit took place in partnership with international law firm Bird & Bird, business software management provider MINDBODY, boutique investment house Financo, plant-based nutrition brand Form Nutrition and WellSpoken —the wellness industry’s first accreditation scheme, aimed at putting credible content at the forefront of wellness.
Featuring an incredible lineup of some of the wellness industry’s biggest names, including Peloton, Technogym, Pukka Herbs, Les Mills, Deliveroo, Pop-Up Fitness and more, the event showcased new global perspectives on the role of technology in wellness, investment opportunities, US and Asia market opportunities, the future of wellness travel, cultivating company culture and more.
Our guests discovered an innovative curation of brands offering the latest in wellness, were inspired by new thinking, new ideas, and the latest trends and insights, and left with practical insights into how to grow and scale a business in the increasingly competitive wellness market.
If you didn’t manage to join us for the industry’s most powerful conversation about the business of wellness, we live-streamed all of the incredible panels, which are still available to watch via our Facebook page.
Here are just some of the key takeaways our expert panelists shared with us on the day……
Consumer Consciousness Is Forcing Wellness Brands To Dig Deeper & Communicate More
Damian Soong, Co-Founder of innovative nutrition brand Form, explored the notion that without planetary wellness, personal wellness cannot exist — this, he argued, means business owners must look after the bigger picture.
In addition to highlighting forward-thinking wellness brands that are responding to the rise of the conscious consumer through disruptive innovations, he argues that big conglomerates like Unilever and Procter and Gamble are also getting in on the act. “All of these businesses are wondering how they can be more like challenger brands,” he explained.
“So they’re spending money on hiring consultants to think like startups and act like challengers.”
According to Soong, the future of the wellness industry is about profitable businesses embracing the idea of having a greater purpose and communicating that in a transparent and authentic way.
Today, consumers want access to information about a company’s supply chain, where it sources its ingredients and what its founders are trying to achieve. But brands must make sure they are able to communicate this type of information in an open and honest way if they want to cut through the noise and reach millennials.
A Healthy Company Culture Means Going Above & Beyond The Norm
For wellness businesses, practising what you preach should start from within and that means working from the top down, explained Wendy Coulson, CEO at Les Mills, UK & Ireland.
According to Coulson, leaders should be role models when it comes to making activity and wellbeing a part of company culture. For Les Mills, this includes engaging the team, asking employees what they connect with, scheduling set times for staff to prioritise wellness and most importantly making wellness accessible. Think walking meetings and cycle-to-work schemes right the way through to workouts at the Wall of China.
Wellness really is critical when it comes to performance, productivity and fulfilment, argued Coulson. And financially for the sustainability of any wellness business, it should be at the forefront of everybody’s mind.
Credibility Is Key
Regulation is inevitable, so get to grips with the credibility of your wellness brand now or risk facing roadblocks in the future — that was the key message from Sarah Greenidge, Founder of accreditation platform WellSpoken.
“Thinking about credibility as a stream in your business is mission critical if you’re a health and wellness brand,” said Greenidge. “It can’t be an afterthought, it should be in the thread of your entire thinking.”
Wellness business owners should be questioning whether this is the right place, the right channel, or the right person to be speaking on their behalf, she suggested. This will help to refine business decisions and strategies from the outset.
Her advice? Think about compliance and credibility as sitting alongside your marketing and communications, and build that into your operations. In the long run, when regulation and policy changes around wellness content and claims, you won’t be on a back foot as a brand, she argued.
Create Environments, Don’t Just Build Spaces
When it comes to the future of wellness real estate and property, brands need to create environments that people want to spend time in, not just build spaces — that was the advice given by Chris Baker, Senior Asset Manager at Intu shopping centres
Echoing his sentiment, Casey Phillips, Partner at property agent Shelley Sandzer outlined the growing demand for wellness spaces that are able to create a sense of community through multidimensional and collaborative offerings. This he argued, leaves them more attractive to both landlords and consumers.
Pop-ups meanwhile, continue to offer wellness brands an alternative route to connect with consumers and trial new concepts, suggested Becky Jones, Head of Special Projects at Appear Here. Citing The Nue Co’s recent pop-up in New York as an example of how wellness brands can leverage spaces to go beyond selling products or services, she revealed how the luxury supplement brand was able to create a hub that marketed itself as a lifestyle, by partnering with other wellness brands, hosting yoga classes and running workshops.
Use Technology & Data To Create A Better Value Proposition
“Raw data is a bit like oil it needs refining,” explained Tom Peters, Director of Commercial Development, UK & IE, Deliveroo.
The key is to develop a view of that data that’s easy to digest and use to effect, he argued. For wellness businesses, ultimately that means using data to create a better value proposition for the customer, covering areas such as price, service and offering.
Using its own customer insights, Peters explained how Deliveroo has created Deliveroo Editions – hubs that connect customers who want to eat exciting food concepts without having to travel into city centres, with the restaurants who want to reach them. By utilising this data, Deliveroo has created an innovative service that can’t be found elsewhere.
And when it comes to AI? Kevin Teague, Senior Vice President & Managing Director, Europe, MINDBODY says we shouldn’t be worried.
“There’s concern about AI’s impact on the wellness industry,” he explained. “But it’s more about using technology and data to create the right tools to enhance what humans can do when we connect with each other. This will ultimately provide a better service,” he argued.