By Jocelyn Chavez
As the nation’s population of baby boomers approach retirement, they are finding themselves with financial security and the luxury of free time. Their children are grown and they are embarking on a new chapter in their lives. Many are devoting time to traveling and taking better care of themselves. As they embrace their new lifestyle, they are discovering new wants and needs. Frequently, the products and services provided by franchises are meeting those needs.
In addition to this new-found freedom, many of the approximately 78 million baby boomers born between 1946 and 1964 are facing changing responsibilities. Baby boomers are accountable for the care of their aging parents, as well as keeping themselves healthy. This is generating big business for franchises that specialize in in-home health care services and fitness.
“Many baby boomers are living more active lifestyles and are leaving the care of loved ones to a trusted home health care provider,” explained Jonathan Herman, Chief Executive Officer of Home Health Mates; a home health care franchisor that provides both medical and non-medical care and allows the aging population the ability to stay in the comfort of their own homes as they age.
Herman has firsthand experience with the significant difference trusted health care providers make in the lives of families. He was a young boy when he lost his father to cancer; several years later, his mother was diagnosed with terminal cancer. His uncle, Joel Markel, took in Jonathan, his brother and mother. At the same time, Markel had a son that was born with terminal health problems. It was this experience that led Markel to recognize the need for quality home health care.
In 1993, Markel put other business interests aside and purchased Preferred Health Mate, which currently operates six locations in New Jersey. Markel also is a majority owner of Home Health Mates.
“Home care is not tethered to the economy. People can put off buying a new car or a dishwasher, but you can’t put off the need for home health care,” Herman observed.
“…other favorable factors supporting the long-term growth of our industry include: A growing senior population, a desire by most people to remain in their homes and a need for cost-effective alternatives to crowded and under-staffed nursing and assisted living facilities,” Herman added. “With our economy slowing down …one of the few industries to show consistent growth – in both demand and employment – is health care. ”
Finding Success as a Home Health Mates Franchisee…
A medical background is not necessary to own a Home Health Mates franchise, although each location must have a registered nurse (RN) on staff. Marketing experience and a business sense is helpful. The Home Health Mates advisory board includes a General Counsel, a CPA, a RN and a MD.
“…we are very receptive to enhancing our model to accommodate different business ideas generated from our franchisees. Our franchisees success will, ultimately, lead to the success of Home Health Mates,” Herman explained.
He continued, “A successful Home Health Mates franchisee will be one that cares about making a difference and improving the quality of life for people within their community…Not only will a successful franchisee lead with their head, but will undoubtedly lead with their heart, too.”
Fitness for the Long Haul…
Baby boomers understand that a fitness regimen is essential to their longevity. Frequently, the fitness-conscious baby boomer population is turning to personal training studios like One2One BodyScapes.
“They are our sweet spot…baby boomers account for approximately ninety percent of our clients,” One2One BodyScapes founder/owner and CEO, Rob Shapiro explained. “They (baby boomers) are an educated group. They know that exercise is not a quick-fix; you need to be exercising on a continual basis.” Shapiro continued, “Baby Boomers are a great market. They are a little older, more secure. We are seeing an increase in applicants at our locations.”
Shapiro opened his first One2One BodyScapes studio 11 years ago. There are currently three personal training corporate locations, three franchise locations and another 14 locations scheduled to open in the next 12 to 18 months. One2One BodyScapes franchises may be opened in most of the 50 states.
Unlike other sectors of the economy, “ Health and fitness is growing. People are recognizing how important it is and are not dropping their routines,” Shapiro observed. “We have a proven model. You get clients and they stay with you because it works,” Shapiro says of the One2One BodyScapes business model.
Is a Fitness Franchise in Your Future?
A passion for fitness is paramount but prospective One2One BodyScapes franchisees don’t necessarily need industry experience to open their own location. However, franchisees who work directly with clients must be nationally certified personal trainers. Ultimately, Shapiro concluded, “It’s about the relationships with clients. You have to relate to people, like people.”
The Endless Beautifying of Baby Boomers
In addition to home health care and fitness studios, there are a wide range of other franchise opportunities for sale that are experiencing increased consumer demand due to baby boomers substantial buying power. Medical spas, salons, cosmetics stores, massage studios and tanning salons are all beautifying baby boomers. The expansive healthy living and aging industry generates approximately $480 billion annually. For prospective franchisees looking to tap in to the baby boomer target audience, the possibilities are endless. Explore the many franchise opportunities at Franchise Solutions and you too can capitalize on baby boomers zest for living life to the fullest and looking gorgeous all the while.