The Fitness Influencer

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Following the discussion of influence over experience in the fashion industry, The Business of Being a Fitness Influencer (2017) provides insight into the “influencer marketing” process within the fitness lifestyle industry via social media and online platforms.

“Fitness and wellness enthusiasts with large social media followings are cashing in on a trillion-dollar market.”

Part of the article focuses on individuals who left their professions, whom now make money simply by documenting their fitness endeavors. Melissa Eckman use of Social Publishing, one of the four zones of social media marketing, assisted her in becoming the fitness influencer she is today. Recording different yoga poses, screenshotting the videos via her blog, and posting images of herself in that form via Instagram, soon transitioned into practicing and teaching yoga, and recording and sharing her yoga flows along with daily inspirational quotes via Instagram.

Following such online and social media actions, led to partnerships ranging between product placements on Instagram page to more long-term promotions, such as a six-month campaign for a newly opened New York Sports Club location in Manhattan, to writing articles and doing social media takeovers for Mind Body Green.

“It’s no longer a celebrity or physician-driven topic, instead it’s everyday people showing off what works and doesn’t work for them.”

While I am never the one to condone professionals in this case athletes, physicians, and/or trained journalist losing opportunities such as providing expert wellness advice or promoting fitness gear to an industry outsider with a large social media following, there can be benefits of the fitness influencer. Fitness influencers may appear more relatable towards non-athletes who are incorporating exercise in their lives or to those individuals who want to try a new method of wellness. Compared to a professional athlete or physician when sharing fitness, wellness and nutrition content. Followers may feel that the influencer’s individual journey is more authentic and would be able to experience the full journey, and maybe struggles in which many people may have a connection to or can relate to.

Those in fitness can seek marketing and content opportunities across categories beyond just activewear, such as food, beauty, workout accessories and fitness studios or gyms. Influencers can document their personal experience about a weight loss product or regiment or include their opinion of a fitness gym via blog, website, and social media. Comparable to online reviews. While experiences and opinions may vary and one can chose to follow or not to follow, I believe it is also important to incorporate a licensed professional’s insight, in additional to an influencer’s in the chosen industry.

-Chelsea

Source: Bobila, M. (2017, May 25). The Business of Being a Fitness Influencer. Retrieved from https://fashionista.com/2017/05/fitness-influencers-workout-instagram-marketing.

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