health and fitness

F45's First Brand Campaign Wants To Recruit Your Inner Athlete

F45 Training, the fast-growing group workout franchise, is introducing its first brand awareness campaign, themed "No One Trains Alone." The effort, created by Laundry Service, relies on member-generated content to convey the intensity and effectiveness of the 45-minute team sessions. Chief marketing officer Brian Killingsworth tells Marketing Daily what the company hopes to accomplish.

Marketing Daily: F45 is relatively new to the U.S. Can you describe the brand's back story?

Brian Killingsworth: It started in 2011 in Australia and caught fire there. At the start of the trend toward high-intensity interval training, [we refined the message] to focus on what it means to train as a team. We're now in over 2000 locations in 67 countries, including over 800 in the U.S., and 600 in Australia.



We're growing like crazy, based on this idea of delivering the world's best workout in the shortest amount of time. People can burn anywhere between 500 and 700 calories on any workout. Because we have coaches helping with fundamentals, it's got a personal training twist. And then you just shut your brain off and follow the flow of the room set out for you.

We're big on community, which is what gets people there. We're very inclusive and friendly. There are no microphones and no mirrors.

Marketing Daily: In many ways, that sounds like CrossFit. How are you different?

Killingsworth: CrossFit is an incredible brand, and there are some elements we share. It has a lot of overhead Olympic lifts and barbell movements. They're pretty advanced moves. Our workouts are short rest periods, then high-intensity interval training. But you can scale it up or down based on your fitness level.

Our demographics are also different. We're 72% female, with an average age of 29. And we strive to welcome people whereever they are on their fitness journey -- we don't want to be intimidating.

Marketing Daily: How did you settle on "No one trains alone" as a campaign theme?

Killingsworth: We spent a lot of time with franchisees, members, owners and coaches, listening to what the community felt we needed to showcase. We wanted to be authentic, with the visuals to reflect our member base. So we cast real members, and over the next year, we'll track their fitness and show real results. Nothing showcases our product better than members experiencing F45 and showing how they do that at different parts of the day.

We want to show what the workout experience is like.

And it shows that when you become a member of F45, you're part of a bigger fitness family. That's true even beyond workouts. We do challenges focusing on workouts, recipes, and meal plans. You can order a meal delivery service. It's all part of the fitness journey.

This is all running on digital platforms, including Facebook, Google, YouTube, Amazon and Spotify. Soon, we'll introduce ads starring Mark Wahlberg, an investor and ambassador.

Marketing Daily: What campaign metrics will you watch most closely?

Killingsworth: The main goal is to raise unaided brand awareness, so somebody looking for a fitness option considers F45. And ultimately, we want to drive revenues up for our franchisees. We want to fully follow the marketing funnel, from awareness to conversion.

Marketing Daily: COVID forced such seismic workout shifts as you began expanding in the U.S. How did that change things for you?

Killingsworth: We pivoted to digital workouts right away. But coming out of the pandemic, our research found that people crave community. They want to congregate, meet people, and be part of something special. And that's what we offer with F45. Organically, at the end of a class, people come together and do these celebratory high fives. We wanted to capture that feeling and energy in the ads because it's such a part of the workout experience.

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