Sapna, before I ask you anything else, I am so curious to know what’s the story behind your start-up name HappleyFit?
First of all, thank you for having me here on Marketing In Asia. If I may ask you a question, what makes you happy? Like many others, your answer would also be food among many other things. As food is a major source of happiness for most of us and if someone tells you that you can stay healthy by eating your own home cooked food which you have been eating since childhood, nothing like it, right? Also, food is a part of all cultures and traditions, be it a festive season or a birthday or any other occasion. HappleyFit is all about staying healthy by eating your home cooked cultural food with nutritionist guidance, clubbed with regular exercise. It’s all about simplification which brings happiness and sustainability factor. Hence, the name HappleyFit! We ensure your health journey is happy.
Congratulations on HappleyFit! When did the inspiration first come to you? What was the market need or gap you saw?
Thank you. My lifestyle choices and sedentary work pattern resulted in my having a lot of health issues. Looking for solutions, I came across a lot of contradicting information about what one should or shouldn’t do to live a healthy life. I also found that many places in this market, exhibit a lack of expertise and a ‘one size fits all’ approach, thereby resulting in just the opposite – instead of becoming healthy, people are becoming more unhealthy. It was therefore, my own personal experience, which I noticed is the experience of many others out there today, and the lacunae in expert, customised diet and fitness regimes that was the driving force for starting HappleyFit.
Sustainability and motivation being a major challenge when it comes to fitness, how does HappleyFit make sure to keep this momentum going?
For any sustainable lifestyle modification journey – nutrition, exercise and motivation plays a major role.
On the nutrition front, we understand diversity and our team is equipped to understand and deal with a variety of Indian cultural palates and medical conditions. We say a big ‘No’ to Fad Diets! Our quest for quality leads us to employ only the best qualified nutritionists. Our personalised approach leads us to mapping mentors based on an individual’s goal, medical condition and cultural food habits. We accommodate ourselves around customers schedule and preferences. Our programmes are realistically designed, and are sustainable, wherein the results do not disappear. Plans are designed considering seasonality and accessibility that have zero side effects, which can be followed easily and moreover its affordable.
On the exercise front – proper form, motivation and engagement work its magic! We have Live Exercise group classes as well as personal classes. Our trainers are creative and are constantly looking for innovative techniques to engage customers and ensure that they exercise in the form best suited to their needs and requirements.
On the motivation front – in our endeavour to build strong bonds with our customers, personal touch remains a major part of what we do, we are constantly in touch with our clients through calls and chats on WhatsApp groups, which plays a major role in keeping the momentum going. With major companies choosing technology over human interaction, we believe that nothing can substitute the personal touch and motivation, which play a major role in the overall well-being of a person. In many cases, my personal experience of the ill-effects of being unfit and then the benefits of fitness helps me to empathise and relate to people easily.
For us at HappleyFit, enjoying a fitness regime is as important as achieving the results one is aiming for!
How can our readers benefit from HappleyFit programme? Is there any inspiring story you would like to share with us?
Our live sessions and regular social media posts have been a huge success; it has motivated many towards taking their health seriously as we provide realistic and practical advice as well as create more awareness about different myths. So, following our social media handles also can benefit many. We have the following online paid programmes which can help someone looking for a sustainable healthy lifestyle programme with goals like weight loss, healthy eating habits and those with medical conditions. These are the plans that we have:
- HappleyFit Fitness Program
- HappleyFit Nutritionist Program
- HappleyFit Live Group or Personal Workout Programs
Do visit our plans page for more details.
And the inspiring stories? I’ll share two stories with you:
- Sneha, based out of Pune, got to know about us through a start-up event. I was at this event and was sharing my journey with the idea of motivating people to take a more serious view of ‘fitness’. Her husband was at this event and could relate to my story. At the beginning, Sneha was very reluctant – a previous bad experience, leading to major health issues had made her a doubting Thomas when it came to any fitness regime. However, a little prodding led her to check our credentials and take a leap of faith by joining us. Today, we can proudly say that she is not only very happy but she is one of our strongest advocates and an inspiration to many others aspiring to gain fitness, but hesitant to take that first step!
- Mrs. Rupali approached us for a condition that we were not very sure we could do justice to. We had the courage to say ‘no’ – we can’t handle this situation. Mrs. Rupali was surprised and told us that she had come prepared to pay any amount for the help she sought. Many other places had promised to cure her, had charged her but to no avail. However, she was still looking for something that would help her. She went on to tell us that we were the only ones to be honest and transparent enough to acknowledge our shortcomings and say ‘no’. This one incident impressed her and made her one of our faithful followers. She went on to enrol her daughter for our fitness programme and then her husband whose cholesterol levels were high. We can now proudly say that we are not just ‘fitness consultants’, but ‘family fitness consultants’ and not only for her, but for many people like her whose entire family is enrolled with us.
How would you explain your HappleyFit Journey so far? What are your plans for the future?
We are proud that in a very short span of time, we have been instrumental in helping 100+ customers of Indian origin, both in India and abroad, best part being on an average more than 70 percent clients stay with us for a minimum period of 16 weeks. The diverse cultural dietary habits cover Maharashtrian, Gujarati, Sindhi, Punjabi, South Indian, Bengali among other states. Goals traverse from weight loss, healthy eating habits, evolving lifestyles to name a few. Medical conditions too are varied and include diabetes, thyroid, PCOD, cardiovascular conditions etc. Our clients keep coming to us saying this is not a diet, it’s a healthy way of eating. Some who had tried various fad diet previously are happy that their weight is not bouncing back as now it’s become a habit for them to make healthy choices. We have customers from places like Dabra, a small town in India where there is a lack of proper trainers. Our live exercise sessions provide them a platform to workout with the best in the industry!
Our faith in our mantra and the belief of our customers has led us to expand our team to 7 members. Having tasted success without compromising our value of providing good service we are ready to scale. We’ve also embarked on the next stage of our journey – we should be launching our app by March. This app aims to provide superior user experience without compromising the human interaction which is key to our customer interaction.
What advice you would give to our readers on a running business and any marketing strategy that works best?
Try to go to market as soon as possible and let your customers drive the business as being founders we get so obsessed with our idea sometimes, we tend to overdo things. Spend on technology only when required, like in our case we started with a Facebook page. This helped cut down overheads while providing us with excellent traction at the first go. In fact, my personal story, our content and live sessions touched a chord with people and we had enquiries even before our services were formally launched! Define your audience, have targeted content, don’t try to reach everywhere.
On the marketing front, its stories which work, my personal story helped us to get initial customers. Once you get customers give best quality service; quality always speaks for itself. Set proper expectations, be open, it’s good to under commit rather than over commit. Todate its word of mouth which has worked for us, our customers are our true brand ambassadors. The other thing which has worked for us is speaking at various offline events, so it should always be a combination of offline and online marketing.
Most importantly, do take care of yourself because health is wealth and you must nurture and look after your body like an asset.
To know more about HappleyFit or to contact you, where can our readers go?
You can learn more about us on happley.fit. Follow us on Facebook and Instagram to get daily tips on staying healthy. You can also drop us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org – we would love to hear from you.