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4 Reasons Why Subscription Fitness Apps Took Off

fitness app

What began with DVDs and evolved into YouTube, now looks like instant access fitness apps. And lots of them. Over the past 5 years, our mobile connections became much more stable with smartphones and TVs and became rather inexpensive. The fitness app world took off.

Today in 2019, the digital fitness landscape looks far different than it did two years ago. Mobile fitness content swept through the industry capitalizing on fitness enthusiast’s on-demand behavior, with much of this content delivered through video.

Premium subscription video apps dominated 2017 and 2018 in fitness. Articles appeared in the Wall St Journal and on Fitt Insider, which captured some of the craze.

The mobile fitness movement is clear. What we’ve worked hard to understand is why the fitness industry was one of the first industries to use subscription video best.

Here’s what we found.

  1. Consumers are driving this. Gym-goers and boutique fitness lovers are still busy. While it’s hard to beat going into a gym, studio or club, the on-the-go life is more prolific than ever before. Convenience matters.
  2. On-the-go. Our mobile world enables us to travel farther and wider. So do our jobs. Now more than ever, the on-the-go mentality is met with connectivity. For fitness, squeezing in 15 to 20 minute workouts is not unusual. Nor are midday park workouts. Since we’re running around, fitness in your hand works well.
  3. Inexpensive. Comparatively speaking, fitness apps are inexpensive. The standard app price is between $10 and 40 per month — and even less per month as an annual subscriber. Most fitness enthusiasts can afford the monthly wallet share for fitness programming.
  4. Complementary Community. While the first reaction may be to worry about in-gym membership declining, we found the opposite to be true. The price points for these apps complements a member’s monthly or annual studio pass. It’s not cannibalization, but more of a product complement serving as a partner alongside brick-and-mortar classes.

These four pillars create vast opportunity for brands willing to engage with the digital medium. In 2019, we’ll continue to see subscriber numbers escalate and the diversity of fitness video apps increase. The seismic shift in fitness content delivery and expectations will echo throughout all fitness brand touchpoints. Now the trouble is measuring just how big this effect will be in 2019.

Ashley Podoll is the head of marketing at Intelivideo, a subscription video on demand platform. She can be reached at ashley@intelivideo.com or visit intelivideo.com.


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