The MiniFitness pitch can be described as excellent because it addresses market gaps exposed by the Covid-19 pandemic. However, a few objections can emerge because the proposal assumes that everyone is ready to start exercising and have the funds to purchase gym equipment. The first objection is that though intended to be inexpensive, the pandemic has negatively affected the incomes of people across the world. Therefore, those who have been left jobless will not be keen to spend their savings on gym equipment. In some cases, people are changing their behavioral patterns regarding physical activity, including the reliance on gym facilities and equipment (Kaur, Singh, Arya, & Mittal, 2020). It means that people whose revenues have been negatively affected will prefer not to purchase any equipment and opt for those activities that can achieve similar results without any gear. The first few months of the pandemic were characterized by people not taking up physical exercises due to stress, depression, and other effects of the pandemic that negated the intentions for physical exercises. The MiniFitness is a solution for people who still have incomes and are keen to explore the benefits of the new gym kits.
A second objection is that MiniFitness covers all ages, including older adults. Even though studies indicate that there are both intrinsic and extrinsic motivations for older people to engage in physical activity, they are known to remain reluctant due to several reasons. In such countries as the United States, adults are considered to be inactive (Lachman, Lipsitz, Lubben, Castaneda-Sceppa, & Jeete, 2018). The causes of inactivity may include lack of free time, costs involved, failure to enjoy physical activity, and pain. The pandemic may have forced people to stay at home, which addresses the issue of lack of time. However, the other reasons will persist, which means adults will hardly be interested in making purchases for an activity they dislike. Therefore, one can argue that older adults will form the smallest market segment for the new equipment unless systemic changes take place and the trends change. The main argument is that younger populations are keener to exercise because they desire to maintain their body shape and image. Older adults do not have such perceptions and may even overlook all the benefits of regular physical activity.
Lastly, the pricing of the gym equipment is not apparent, which means the acceptance and willingness to purchase by consumers cannot be discerned. Due to the economic effects of the pandemic, even those people with incomes may be reluctant to make any purchases they deem unnecessary. From a marketing perspective, the agenda-setting theory should act as a mechanism for public attention and influence, which could divert consumers’ focus from price to benefits (Feezell, 2017). However, the marketing description is inadequate and there remains to be seen how the gym sales consider affordability aspects or capitalization on the ongoing links between a sedentary life and negative health outcomes. In other words, pricing and other marketing considerations are missing and could mean the difference between success and failure.
Regarding the first objection, physical activity remains a critical aspect of people’s lives during the lockdowns. An assumption can be made that people who are keen to engage in physical activity will find means to do so. Such populations present an entrepreneurial opportunity because they will be willing to try new equipment that will make exercise easier. In many countries, gyms have remained operational, especially after sanitary and social distancing measures emerged to be effective in limiting the spread of the pandemic. One can argue that gym subscriptions have remained relatively unaffected and that those people with disposable incomes could try a new home kit. The current gym subscription levels mean that only interested people are willing to join the gym while the rest prefer not to. Reduced incomes may not devastatingly affect the willingness to purchase home gym equipment. Remote working has become a norm and many people have restored their revenue streams. Lastly, large gym equipment may be one of the key barriers to physical activity at home (Kaushal, Keith, Aguiñaga, & Hagger, 2020). Therefore, offering smaller and cheaper could eliminate this barrier and rekindle interest in physical exercises.
The second objection can be addressed by the agenda-setting theory and the increasing use of social media to disseminate messages regarding the pandemic. Incidental news and exposure have increased because of the easy access to social networking sites (Feezell, 2017). Therefore, the news has already spread that people with poor physical activity practices are at higher risks of contracting and succumbing to Covid-19. Older adults have also been described as particularly vulnerable because their immunity is not as strong. With links between physical exercise and health outcomes already made public knowledge, older people have an incentive to become more physically active. Therefore, equipment that may help them achieve great results in their exercising endeavors can become a major selling point to be exploited by marketers. Some studies indicate that the pursuit of health is of the major reasons why older adults exercise (Langhammer, Bergland, & Rydwik, 2018). Therefore, this group should be a major market segment for any gym equipment, especially if the health benefits from the products sold can be illustrated.
Lastly, pricing decisions are critical for any new venture and should be considered even at the beginning of the development phase. However, such decisions require extensive market research and unfounded estimations are unacceptable for marketers. From a marketing perspective, the price can be determined after positive perceptions of the product have been achieved. In this case, the priority for the marketers should be to get people interested in the equipment before determining what to charge for them. Additionally, the environment remains uncertain and more changes in the economy may take place. As the responses to the pandemic start to become more effective, affordability may cease to become a key concern as people return to their jobs and incomes start to flow. Therefore, critical considerations will need to be made because pricing is a long-term decision expected to go beyond the pandemic. Marketers will take into account the current financial status of the clientele and project any future changes to predict the best prices.
Feezell, J. (2017). Agenda setting through social media: the importance of incidental news exposure and social filtering in the digital era. Political Research Quarterly, 71(2), 1-13.
Kaur, H., Singh, T., Arya, Y., & Mittal, S. (2020). Physical fitness and exercise during the COVID-19 pandemic: A qualitative enquiry. Frontiers in Psychology, 11, 1-10.
Kaushal, N., Keith, N., Aguiñaga, S., & Hagger, M. (2020). Social cognition and sociological predictors of home-based physical activity intentions, planning, and habits during the COVID-19 pandemic. Behavioral Sciences, 10(9), 1-16.
Lachman, M., Lipsitz, L., Lubben, J., Castaneda-Sceppa, C., & Jeete, A. (2018). When adults don’t exercise: Behavioral strategies to increase physical activity in sedentary middle-aged and older adults. Innovation in Aging, 2(1), 1-20.
Langhammer, B., Bergland, A., & Rydwik, E. (2018). The importance of physical activity exercise among older people. BioMed Research International, 6, 1-3.