Business Lessons from the Life of Jack LaLanne

January 25, 2011

January 25, 2011

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Seth Godin’s blog featured a few lessons from the life of Jack LaLanne, the revolutionary fitness entrepreneur and health buff who recently passed away at the age of 96. Here are a few more ideas that are applicable to small businesses: Be the Example- If you advocate a certain culture, style, or way of living, the best way to […]

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Seth Godin’s blog featured a few lessons from the life of Jack LaLanne, the revolutionary fitness entrepreneur and health buff who recently passed away at the age of 96. Here are a few more ideas that are applicable to small businesses:

  • Be the Example- If you advocate a certain culture, style, or way of living, the best way to grow your brand is to live it. Jack LaLanne did not miss a day of his famed 2 hour weights plus cardio workout in years. He lived what he preached to his audience, never eating processed sugars and sticking to a vegetarian diet. A great example of a company  doing exactly this is LuLuLemon Athletica, where there are free yoga classes in their stores and fitness buffs as sales reps.
  • Don’t Give Up. Ever.- Jack LaLanne was seen as an oddity when he started his first gym in 1936. His New York Times obituary recalls him saying, “People thought I was a charlatan and a nut. The doctors were against me — they said that working out with weights would give people heart attacks.” He certainly proved everyone wrong, in the process growing a multi million dollar brand and a fitness empire.
  • Be Personal- Jack LaLanne hosted a TV show that ran for over 40 years. In it, he made the viewer feel like he/she was exercising alongside him,  saying things like, “Boys and girls, come here. Uncle Jack wants to tell you something.” He took advantage of the intimacy TV provided, and used this advantage for the duration of his show. Think about ways to make your business more personal: are there times when you can address your customers by their names or add a more personal touch?

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