The gym chain, which is investing £225m globally in upgrading its clubs and customer service, has spent the past two years conducting consumer research and working with fitness experts to inform its new brand positioning, which has been created with the help of branding agency The Clearing.
Fitness First is spending £1.5m on the first phase of a marketing campaign designed to communicate its repositioning to consumers. Ads are appearing across outdoor, press, digital and social media, as well as in its gyms.
The brand’s "fitness philosophy" has also been changed, adopting what it dubs "Dynamic Movement Training", a freestyle fitness regime based on natural movement. By 2015, all 2,200 Fitness First UK staff, from the chief executive to receptionists, will have attained a certified fitness qualification.
Other initiatives include 'Bio Age', a fitness test that measures gym members’ biological ages, and a fitness app that lets customers track their progress daily.
David Jones, Fitness First’s UK marketing director, said: "We are transforming our business based on what we’ve learnt. While our competitors are sales led and think it’s about the number of machines in the gym, we focus on our people, motivating members, our clubs, and our product."
Richard Buchanan, founder and director of consulting at The Clearing, added: "The strategy aims to deliver a new approach to fitness that won’t solely get you into fitness for a matter of time, but naturally introduces fitness into your life.
"Redefining the look and feel of the brand to reflect a contemporary apparel lifestyle image, a number of new brand innovations and features, as well as the new logo, will help to define a clear defendable territory for the brand."