Helping people get better at living.

Race for life

Winning in healthcare is anyone’s game.

Over the past decade we’ve seen and felt the forces of a new super league in business: companies whose growth far surpasses all competition – with no signs of slowing down.  
The leaders of these giants understand how, where and when to deploy their brand as an asset against new and emerging customer needs. Uncontained by sectors, silos, or swim lanes; they transcend traditional category limitations.  

Built on a foundation of exceptional products and strong customer relationships, these companies move in multiple directions to address more of their customers’ lives. Their brand unlocks exponential revenue growth across new needs, while they continue to capitalize on incremental sector gains.  
This is arena thinking; it’s the customer-centric foundation that allows brands to make Iconic Moves… and in this series, we’re exploring unmet needs as a way for brands to look for new innovation and exponential growth opportunities. We’ve so far explored Play, Express, Move, Connect, and now Thrive.

Urgent Care Required  

In many respects, thriving is the greatest unmet need of our era. New research from the United Nations Development Programme, The Human Development Report, shows that almost every country in the world is experiencing reversals in human development, with acute crises giving way to chronic, layered interacting uncertainties at a global scale.

New research from C Space shows that people believe things are about to get much harder: with the cost-of-living crisis further debilitating their ability to live well. The gap between people’s desire to thrive and their ability to do so seems to be getting wider, which is counter-intuitive, given the huge and rapid growth of the “health”, “wellness” and “wellbeing” sector.

Thrive is certainly underserved and this presents a win-win opportunity for customers and brands. But getting it right demands investment in customers who have mixed views about whether brands can play a role in helping them live better.

Brands that want to grow their ‘share of live’ by competing in Thrive, will need to solve a core problem: How to go beyond one-dimensional solutions and (re-) establish permission with consumers’ who have mixed views about the role of brands in their lives.  

Working with consumers across five markets, we look at what it takes to thrive, what some of the barriers are and consider why, despite the huge growth of the health and wellness industries, consumers really don’t believe they’re getting better at living.

First, let’s take a look at one of the brands getting it right, and the potential to move more deeply into Thrive. Nike:

Nike: The Ultimate Thrive Brand?

What if Nike sold salmon?

Over two decades, Nike has intentionally invested in its brand to create deep meaning with (new) customers; it has built the infrastructure to maintain highly relevant, personalised relationships – and, as such, has increased permission to leverage its brand and extend beyond its core. What’s next? Nutrition? Healthcare? Vacations? Nike has leveraged its brand to drive this growth and potential. The question for Nike isn’t if they can extend their brand presence to drive these new revenues, it’s when…

Where could the Nike brand take the business next?

“Nike is universal. It would have an awesome heart-health clinic.”

How Nike Grows

This is arena thinking; it’s the customer-centric foundation that allows brands to make Iconic Moves. In Thrive we explore the greatest unmet need of a generation and the win-win opportunities for brands and their customers.

The Thrive Paradox

Thriving is believing you’re getting better at living and, despite the huge and rapid growth of the health, “wellbeing” and “wellness” sectors, it’s the greatest unmet need of a generation and a win-win opportunity for consumers and brands.

Thriving is not an endpoint. It’s about the journey much more than the goal.

We don’t just want to survive. We want to thrive.

Thrive (not Survive)

Where do we set the bar for “living our best life?” In the past two years, many people made avoiding (or surviving) COVID-19 their overarching goal. But in normal times, avoiding illness is so fundamental an aspiration as to barely qualify as one. Even “fitness” or “wellness” are not so much goals in their own right as means to an end. We want to be fit and healthy not just so that we can simply continue to exist, but in order to be capable of engaging with those people and activities that bring us fulfilment and joy.

We don’t just want to survive. We want to thrive. Thriving is not an endpoint. It’s about the journey much more than the goal.

Working with consumers across the globe, we mapped that journey. While the context in which an individual thrives is highly personal, the stages each person goes through on their Thrive journey are definable – offering clear opportunities for brands to play a role.

Implications for Brands