The wellness industry was dubbed to be worth $4.3 trillion in 2018, and in the last 10 years, a whole new crop of start-ups and influencers have burst onto the wellness scene. But this health-adjacent empire wasn't built by chance - influencers and the blogging culture has perhaps played the most critical role in driving not only awareness of new brands, but a widespread belief in the concept of wellness.
All of this new marketing and advertising speak has a profound influence on our choice of exercise, clothes, cosmetics and nutrition. The last couple of years, many wellness brands have made headlines for making controversial claims about their products and services which has started to erode public trust in the industry. When it comes to health and wellness information shared online, there needs to be certain parameters established to guide those working in the industry to produce the most credible content. Credible information has the power to influence the consumer's decision-making process and drive positive uptake when it comes to choosing a wellness product or service to opt into.
While brands and influencers operating within the wellness industry have a legitimate right to promote products or services and also provide lifestyle information to consumers, we need to find a balance between sharing the content we want to share and ensuring it is credible. There are a few caveats to this deal: opinions need to be robustly informed, recommendations need to be verified by people qualified in the relevant area and areas of uncertainty need to be plainly outlined. Navigating this minefield of credibility is difficult and there is very little guidance or direction on how to credibly manoeuvre in this space. The current lack of industry-specific legislation has meant that consumers and other stakeholders have been active players in holding wellness brands and influencers accountable.
To address this unmet need, The WellSpoken Mark and the Health Bloggers Community, have founded The Register of Health & Wellness Influencers, the first and only independent register for wellness influencers worldwide. Their goal is to set standards for influencers to protect the public from misinformation. It marks the beginning of basic regulation to the wild west nature of the wellness that many in the industry have profited from. The reality is, we as consumers of health and wellness information need to also take action and there are some simple steps we can take to separate the wheat from the chaff. When it comes to influencers, it’s important to differentiate what is opinion and what is backed by evidence. While there is an infinite number of ways in which credible content can be curated, their training and framework to which everyone can adhere, ultimately raises existing industry standards and ensures that the fundamental aim of all health and wellness information is achieved.
For more information and to become a registered health and wellness influencer please visit: https://rohwi.org/