According to the council’s latest press release, they inform us that Tameside was branded the “UK’s heart disease capital” by The British Heart Foundation. And they go on to tell us that it’s not just heart health that has come under scrutiny in the region. Life expectancy is worse than the UK average, because over 18% of children and 26% of adults are considered obese and there are 422 smoking-related deaths a year according to a recent Public Health report!
So, what do they do to put an end to this public health scandal?
Do they put a stop to the council’s plans to introduce more drive-throughs? Close down all the fast food outlets, greasy spoon caravans, take-a-way chip shops, kebab shops and burger bars?
They have set about trying to dramatically improve our health by changing the branding on the leisure centres, the swimming pools (including the two that they intend to close) give all the staff new uniforms and launch a new website!
And of course it wouldn't be the council if it was not introduced by some spokesperson engaging in ‘council-speak’ like – “Tameside is currently performing significantly below the UK average across a number of key indicators including physical activity and obesity!”
They also tell us that from September, they will be bringing a series of internationally-renowned Les Mills (2) group exercise classes to ‘Active Tameside’ for the first time.
Now for those, like me who've never heard of Les Mills, or his ‘internationally known’ group fitness classes, you'll be interested to learn that it was apparently founded in New Zealand and is allegedly the world’s largest provider of choreographed fitness programmes, combining technology with music. – So, a bit like Jane Fonda’s aerobics programme of the 80’s or another form of Zumba.
Personally, I think they’d have been better off investing in a selection of Mrs Mills video’s for all the use this poorly thought out, incredibly expensive, totally unnecessary re-branding exercise will be in re-invigorating interest in Tameside’s sporting facilities.
Basic knowledge of marketing would have shown the Sports Trusts management that when customers buy your product or service, it’s the experience they receive is what persuades them to buy from you again. Not the style of the logo over the entrance!
If Tameside Sports Trust wanted to increase their sales dramatically and encourage more participants from those who currently are happy living a more sedentary lifestyle, then they needed only to shift their sales focus from attracting new customers to enticing their proven customers to buy and buy again.
Anyone who has a passing knowledge of sales and marketing will confirm that the best sales prospect is a prospect that's already converted - in other words, one of your current customers.
So, more money wasted!