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ExerciseNZ acknowledged as top association for marketing

The achievements of the Exercise Association of New Zealand (ExerciseNZ), and its charismatic Chief Executive Richard Beddie, in its communication and marketing have been recognised with the announcement that the organisation is to be presented with the Industry Association/Peak Body Award in the 2018 Australasian Leisure Management Communication and Marketing Awards.

A non profit representative organisation, operating under an incorporated society membership structure, ExerciseNZ represents organisations and professionals in the fitness/exercise industry in New Zealand.

ExerciseNZ’s 250 members, which represent approximately 85% of the industry, include commercial operators (such as Les Mills and Contours), non profit organisations (including the YMCA) and local government council facilities.

Commenting on the Award, Australasian Leisure Management Publisher Nigel Benton stated “communication is one of the key functions of an industry association/peak body – both with its members as well as with the wider community and influencers.

“ExerciseNZ is exceptional in how it does this, providing electronic and news communication to members, in addition to its annual Roadshow and end-of-year FiTex convention.

“Beyond this though, ExerciseNZ and Richard Beddie are powerful advocates for the fitness/exercise industry in New Zealand.

“Over many years Richard has represented the interested of ExerciseNZ and its members on a national stage, advocating the value and benefits of physical activity and healthy living while engaging with stakeholders with interests in the wellness of New Zealanders.”

Benton cites that in engaging boutique news media services company Make Lemonade in the middle of 2017, the partnership between Beddie’s passion and the communication skills of Make Lemonade principal Kip Brook has taken ExerciseNZ into a “new stratosphere”.

Benton commented “this partnership has taken the ExerciseNZ message and brand to all Kiwis, with Richard now among New Zealand’s key opinion formers in the exercise, physical activity and wellness space.”

This sees Exercise NZ and Beddie not being deterred in taking on challenging topics on issues relating to industry safety and franchising disputes as well as recently questioning Government funding allocations for the All Blacks.

Benton added “given the status of rugby as a national icon, Richard was extremely brave in questioning the All Blacks’ funding and to call for such monies to be allocated to grassroots physical activity.

“But what is most significant is that his own status and that of ExerciseNZ is such that he was given a platform to express his views via national media.

“This is a true testament to the effectiveness of ExerciseNZ’s communication and marketing efforts and underlines why it is a worthy recipient of this Award.”

Commenting on his role, Beddie explains “I have had the pleasure of working with the team at ExerciseNZ for many years, and during that time I have seen many changes come and go, both as a fitness centre owner and manager and also in my capacity within ExerciseNZ at an industry level.

“What has remained consistent is that the issues that most fitness centres face are very similar and in discussions with others outside my centre, it is always nice to know ‘you are not alone’.”

The Australasian Leisure Management Communication and Marketing Awards acknowledge how the leisure industry - covering aquatics, attractions, entertainment, events, fitness, parks, recreation, sport, tourism and venues - communicates how it entertains, enriches and improves quality of life as well as how it engages with consumers to generate business success and deals with scrutiny.

Explaining the significance of the Awards, Benton added “these awards recognise excellence among individuals, organisations, businesses and government.

“When done well, marketing and communications build a brands reputation and add to the bottom line of any business. At the same time, communications and marketing are also about dealing with crisis and standing up to scrutiny, something that several of our winners have had to face in the past year.

“The awards recognise a cross section of activities from international businesses to start-ups, industry icons and national organisations to small operators, showing that effective communications and marketing is not just for big operators, and is more about a commitment to sharing what an organisation excels at.”

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