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INTERVIEW


ANDREW COSSLETT


The CEO of Fitness First talks to Kate Cracknell about putting behavioural psychology at the


heart of the business in a £270m global repositioning and rebrand


“I


Cosslett has worked in hospitality and for big brands like Unilever


f you were to stop 100 people in the street and ask them if they wanted to feel happier and look better, how many of them would say ‘no thanks’?”


asks Andrew Cosslett, CEO of Fitness First, when I meet him at the company’s offices in Marylebone, London. “The real question is: what’s that worth to you? What are you willing to give up in the pursuit of that health and happiness? “And the problem is that, so far,


the fi tness sector hasn’t really given consumers a reason to place much worth on its offering.” Cosslett is fi rmly of the belief that


blaming lack of participation on cost is “invalid when gym membership costs no more than the price of a coffee a day”. But it is, he acknowledges – and particularly in tough economic times – up to operators to offer “a product, a proposition and a way of dealing with people on their own terms”. He says: “Actual cost is irrelevant.


We simply haven’t done a good enough job of explaining ourselves and putting an offer in front of people that they fi nd good value. You have to join all the dots and present a proposition that satisfi es customers’ needs, making it easier for them to take that step and make a commitment to the gym.” Faced with the huge challenge of


turning around the fortunes of an embattled Fitness First, Cosslett


March 2014 © Cybertrek 2014


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