Introduction to The Pathway to Inclusion: From Principle to Profit
|Associate Director, Amy Rauworth|
As 2008 comes to an end, we look back over a year of tough financial times, probably the most difficult that many of us have experienced in our lifetimes. Many economic experts say the hardships will endure for 2009. So how will your business maintain or even increase your bottom line? Whether you are a fitness professional at a private gym, a large franchise facility, or a medically based fitness center, distinguishing your services/products and offering more-for-less can help you meet this formidable goal.
More than 50 million Americans with disabilities - 18% of our population - are potential customers for businesses of all types across the United States. This group has $175 billion in discretionary spending power, according to the U.S. Department of Labor. That figure is more than twice the spending power of American teenagers and almost 18 times the spending power of the American 'tweens' market.
Accessibility attracts not only people with disabilities, but also their families and friends. Like others, these customers often visit stores, restaurants, movie theaters, and other businesses accompanied by family or friends. This expands the potential market exponentially!
By the year 2030, 71.5 million Baby Boomers will be over the age of 65 and demanding products, services, and environments that address their age-related physical changes. Many of these individuals do not identify as having a disability, but a fitness facility that can provide alternative programs and services will capture the attention of this active and expansive audience.