Wellness is having a moment, but what does this actually mean for clients? Asks Ashleigh Sharman.
There’s no escaping, the word wellness is everywhere! But while it has been used by the spa industry for decades its use is growing in the consumer space across a variety of industries — with awareness swiftly following, or so we hope.
This shift asks us to pause and consider then where we are really at with wellness?
It was this question SPA+CLINIC posed to Dr Jean D Laing D.C, LaGaia President and Founder, and daughter Kristen Elise Laing-Herbert, LaGaia Style and Features Editor, as we sent them off to experience The Wellness Summit: a two-day consumer event featuring Wellness Couch podcasters delivering the latest cutting-edge wellness and self-empowerment information.
“I had no pre-conceived ideas about the event but as a Chiropractor, my history is based in wellness and I soon found I knew a lot of the presenters,” explains Jean.
“By way of the podcast, I was fascinated how people literally ‘tuned in’ to wellness and how this provided the brands and experts a way to reach the end-consumer in a very relevant way.
“I already knew a lot of the information on offer however for attendees it was very easy to adopt, focusing on simple lifestyle choices including mental, physical, fitness and nutrition.”
Importantly, Kristen adds that we need to remember everyone’s definition of wellness is very different.
“For the consumer, the information was realistic and approachable. From clarifying fads to a strong focus on gut health, the effects of stress to getting back into the kitchen and mindful eating, we experienced a deeper level of conversation.
“Those of us in the industry need to be aware of what the public are getting dramatically wrong and this includes pivotal points of health including the gut, mental health, and an alkaline state,” adds Kristen.
For Jean, effective communication skills mean that wellness can come to life through compassion and personal stories. This ‘reality proof’ is what consumers are seeking and the rise of the ‘wellness warrior’ is simply ordinary people who looked outside the box to find a solution.
“Telling wellness stories is so important! Wellness warriors are the proof consumers need, the ‘realness’ standing in front of the science or the product in discussion.
“It really resonated with me because I established my company out of wellness. LaGaia means Mother Earth and we first set about creating herbal teas — to connect with our clients — reaffirming to me that that IS what the consumer wants.
“They want to know what is in their products and they are at-large coming to understand our philosophy that beauty and health are inseparable. We started with this in the 90’s and people are really ready for it now,” she says.
“Wellness is at the centre of our brand’s being; it’s not a fad but an everyday implementation.”
And so, we must ensure clients are equipped with the tools to make it their reality also.