More than two-thirds of women and three-fourths of men in the United States are now either overweight or obese, according to a NHANES study that gathered data from 2007 through 2012.(1). What are the demographics in your weight loss program? I bet you have more women than you do men enrolled into your program, am I right? Targeting your program to men can be easy and it can make your program more profitable. Let’s take a closer look.
Let’s face it, men and women approach weight loss differently. Women tend to be concerned with calories, nutrients and learning “how to eat better.” Men typically do not want to be bothered with any of that, in fact they like to eat without having to think about it. Most men just want to be told what to do and when to do it while most women tend to be planners, thinkers and processors. According to Karen Miller-Kovach, chief scientific officer for Weight Watchers Inc. and the author of the book “She Loses, He Loses: The Truth About Men, Women and Weight Loss” states that men are less food-obsessed than women. Karen also states “men usually get a wake up call, declare fat the enemy and then do whatever to get rid of the problem.” So why is this important for you to know? The weight loss industry trend is to individualize the program to the patient/client. I am certain your program is geared toward women but what about men?
Ask yourselves these questions:
1. Do our marketing materials include pictures of both men and women?
2. Do our patient/client testimonials convey a positive message from both genders?
3. Do our counseling rooms and common areas scream “girly décor?”
4. Is our staffing diverse in ethnicity/race and gender?
5. Does our orientation session speak to women and men? (i.e. sex drive/performance and erectile dysfunction can be affected by obesity).
6. Does our program offer “meat and potato” types of foods such as (Cheesesteak Pasta, Sloppy Joe, Vegetable Chili, etc.) Shelf-Stable Entrees (Vegetable Stew, Beef Stroganoff, Chicken Enchilada.) and Protein Chips?
7. Does our program offer our patients/clients a referral program? (i.e. bring in a friend, if they join the program the hosting patient/client gets $25 or 20% off their next food purchase, etc.).
8. Does our program offer a test that would appeal particularly to men in addition to BMI and body composition testing (i.e. push up test/sit-up test or hand grip strength test).
9. Does our program have a physical fitness/activity component to it? (Men tend to respond well to physical activity challenges).
These are just a few ways you can tailor your weight loss program toward getting more men in through your doors. With three-fourths of the US men being overweight and/or obese, this is a huge market that your program needs to be tapping into to help men get healthier.
Tip: Since men tend to like “uncomplicated”, our HealthWise Easy Weigh plan and Power Fast plan are perfect for your male patients. Contact us to get a copy of these plans to start using in your weight loss program today. Dont forget to check out our 200 products with lots of tasty meal replacements, breakfasts, shakes, protein bars and snacks that are perfect for men!
(1) Prevalence of Overweight and Obesity in the United States 2007-2012. JAMA Intern Med. Published 6/22/2015
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