Virgin Health Zone – What’s the Strategy?


A few weeks ago, I was at the gym and saw a Virgin Health Kiosk in the lobby. So of course, being a Businesspundit and always wondering what companies are doing, I went over and poked around.

The kiosk consists of a bench with one of those blood pressure monitors and a computer screen. A stack of cards encouraged gym members to check out Virgin Life Care. I took one and checked out the site, and my primary question is what does Virgin hope to get out of this?

The program appears to work like this:
1. Sign up online
2. Track your workouts and health
3. Earn rewards

So Virgin spends $$$ to put these machines everywhere, and gives away rewards because they want to…??? What? I don't know. The only thing I can think of is they want to use the data to develop marketing relationships with members. But I think people are becoming more skeptical about these types of relationships. We realize we are marketed to everywhere, all the time, and we want a break.

Is this a good move by Virgin or a waste of money? And what is the long term goal? If you have ideas, please leave a comment.

  • Do Virgin offer health cover in the US? Perhaps they’re looking at developing health cover where the premiums are linked to your health measurements and number of workouts?

  • Janice Doran

    They have a program called healhtmiles and you get points for using the healthzone and working out – just got a gift certificate to Target. My co. offered it so I suppose they want us to be healthy.

  • craig

    Retention! The biggest problem in the fitness club business is keeping your members coming to the club, and not cancelling their memberships. This system (i’m sure they feel) will help retain members which would more than pay for the units.

  • ps

    Virgin offers the Health Miles service to companies, which they can offer as part of their benefits package. My company has the program and we have quarterly “step challenges,” where we form teams and strive to get the most steps on our pedometers. I think it’s a great tool companies can use to promote wellness and team building among their employees.

  • I think the Virgin concept is ok but I just found a great product called the Heart Wizard. In the comfort and privacy of my home I can track my fitness level, biological age and much more and see my changes over time.