New GM marketing appointed at Fitness & Lifestyle Group

Former Audible head of content marketing and brand joins fitness group to champion marketing across portfolio of brands

Audible’s director of brand and content marketing has switched audiobooks for the fitness sector and joined Fitness & Lifestyle Group as its new general manager of marketing and PR for A/NZ.

Sara Dunseath has spent the last past five years with Audible, initially commencing as marketing director with the Amazon-owned business. Her resume also includes senior marketing positions with HR tech startup, LiveHire, Gumtree Australia and Carnival Australia.

Dunseath told CMO she saw it as an exciting time to be working in the health and wellness industry.

“Covid-19 has had a significant impact on how we value our health. I am deeply passionate about the industry, and fitness has always played a pivotal role in my life. It's helped me get through the hard times and I've experienced the positive impacts it has on my energy and mental health,” she said. “So when the prospect came up to join Fitness & Lifestyle Group, whose core purpose is ‘to make a meaningful, positive impact in people's lives through innovative and diversified health and wellness offerings across physical and digital platforms’, it was an opportunity I had to explore.”

Dunseath is indirectly replacing previous GM marketing at Fitness & Lifestyle Group, Matt Fletcher, with a broadened remit. Reporting to the A/NZ CEO, she’s responsible for leading the marketing of the A/NZ businesses’ core brands, which include Fitness First, Goodlife, Zap Fitness, Barry's Bootcamp and Jetts NZ. This includes brand and retail marketing, sales and lead generation, digital and ecommerce, member acquisition and retention programs, communication and public relations, market research, operational and capital expense budgeting, and the training and management of the FLG Marketing team. She'll also oversee insights, which is moving into marketing for the first time.

Dunseath highlighted her experiences over the past decade working for several well-loved brands as providing key learnings for how to tackle the new role.

“P&O Cruise was the training ground where I cut my teeth on brand and retail strategy. At Gumtree, I led the shift from a traditional marketing culture to an integrated and customer-centric culture, leading a customer segmentation strategy and developing the CRM vision and plan,” she explained.

“Over the last five years at Audible, I was fortunate to work across multiple roles [director of marketing, director of engagement and retention and director of brand and content marketing]. As a result, I've directed a gamut of local and international projects, from overhauling the local membership offering, launching the Audible Originals program in Australia and leading the recommendation to evolve the brand management and creative services marketing practice on a global scale.”

Like all marketers, Dunseath also recognises she’s going to need to navigate the impacts of Covid and how it has evolved and changed customer behaviour.

“Being customer-obsessed and curious, I am focussing my energy on getting close to the customer and understanding the drivers and barriers of getting Aussies and Kiwis back into our gyms,” she added.

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