Peloton Market & Consumers

Part
01
of five
Part
01

Peloton Customer Demographics

Peloton equipment consumers in Canada are likely to be 25-64 years old, married, and having household incomes of over CA$60,000. The consumers are likely to be located in cities such as Toronto and Calgary.

Age

  • According to a survey conducted by Ipsos--the survey was carried out on behalf of Peloton between October 4-8, 2018--three in four Canadians aged 25-64 say that they find it difficult to make time to get to an exercise class and it is "more convenient for them to exercise on their own schedule".
  • According to Peloton co-founder & CEO, John Foley, the target demographic of the brand is individuals who do not have "time to go to the gym". Typically, in the United States, those in their 20s and early 30s find the time to work out in gyms, however, older individuals tend to be busier with family and work and are likely to have lesser time to do so. Peloton's target demographic (in 2016) in the United States was 35-65 years old.

Gender

  • The Ipsos survey found that "men are more likely than women to mention not having enough time (45% of men vs. 35% of women) or not being able to fit it in with their schedule (30% men vs. 21% women)".
  • One in six respondents said they would like to incorporate indoor cycling in their exercise regime, including 28% 25-34-year- olds. However, the survey results do no provide the gender breakdown (probably because there is little or no gender divide).
  • Simply based on the fact that men tend to mention not having enough time to work out more than women, and accounting for the income disparity between the two genders, single users of Peloton equipment are more likely to be men. However, given that the majority of the target demographic is married, and that Peloton equipment is used at home (probably by both genders), it cannot be assumed that men make the purchase decisions. The brand's holiday advertising campaign shows the perspectives of both genders.
  • There was no information found that clearly indicated the gender demographics of Peloton equipment consumers in Canada.

Income

  • In the United States, Peloton is the "go-to exercise regime for everyone from high profile celebrities and CEOs to busy parents who need a more convenient way to exercise". Peloton consumers have nice homes and the money and space for Peloton equipment. The brand targets affluent consumers and the relatively less affluent consumers who are willing to spend the extra bit on fitness.
  • While Peloton's price point clearly indicates that they target the upper class, the company's S-1 form (IPO filing) says they target consumers with household incomes over US$50,000. According to the brand's IPO prospectus, consumers under the age of 35 and with incomes under US$75,000 are its largest growing demographic. Therefore, Peloton also targets non-affluent consumers with household incomes between US$50,000 and US$75,000.
  • Peloton's survey, conducted by Ipsos, comprised of a sample of 1,000 Canadians with household incomes of over CA$60,000 (approx. US$45,000). The Ipsos survey respondents income can be assumed to be the same as that of the target consumer in Canada as the company claims to target the US$50,000+ demographic (in the US and other developed nations) in its IPO-related documents.
  • The Peloton bike is priced at CA$2,950 in Canada and CA$49 for "access to Peloton Digital's unlimited class subscription".

Marital Status

  • The typical Peloton consumer in the United States has children. Given that 56% percent of Canadians aged 25-64 are married and 13% live common law, and considering the cultural similarities between the United States and Canada, the Peloton consumer in Canada is more likely to be married or living with a partner. The Peloton holiday campaign (United States) features a couple.

Education

  • There is no information related to the education levels of the target demographic available in the public domain. In Canada, income is correlated to education and luxury products are usually purchased by the affluent; however, our findings suggest that Peloton is also targeting non-affluent consumers. While affluent consumers are most likely to have a bachelor's degree or an advanced degree, the same cannot be said about all households with income between CA$60,000 and high-income levels (based on Canada Census data).

Geography

  • Peloton was launched in Canada in October 2018. At the time of the launch, Peloton has plans to open 10 showrooms over a year or year-and-a-half.
  • Currently, Peloton has seven showrooms in the provinces of Ontario (Toronto, North York, Mississauga, and Etobicoke), Alberta (Calgary, Edmonton), and British Columbia (Vancouver).
  • In the United States, the typical Peloton consumer has a nice large home in the suburbs.

Research Strategy

In order to find the required information, we adopted multiple search strategies. We started out by looking for advertising case studies related to Peloton in Canada as they often provide information related to target audiences. In addition, we also searched for any media coverage of their advertisements. As we learned that Peloton was launched in Canada in 2018, we searched for launch-related news and commentary. While this strategy was fairly successful and led us to the Ipsos survey that was carried out on behalf of Peloton, it did not provide answers to all questions.

Next, we searched the IPO-related filings on the company but failed to find Canada-specific information. Nevertheless, we have presented our findings for greater insights. Lastly, we searched for any interviews by John Foley, the CEO of the company and Kevin Cornils, Managing Director International, but did not meet with any success. The interviews were either dated (from 2016) or did not specifically mention demographic details of the target consumer. Despite adopting multiple strategies there was still information we were unable to obtain. We believe details of some demographic variables are not publicly available.
Part
02
of five
Part
02

Peloton Customer Psychographics

Peloton customers are highly invested in community and personal experience. They want quality and they're willing to pay to get it, and are also willing to complain, loudly, about things not being up to the quality they desire.

Hobbies and Interests

  • Peloton members enjoy healthy cooking.
  • The Peloton blog posts recipes on a regular basis, and the Delish magazine and CNBC have talked about the eating habits of Peloton instructors. The featured dishes consistently emphasize health consciousness and fresh ingredients.
  • Peloton members support the LGBTQ+ community. Peloton Pride is an annual event with specially themed classes.
  • LGBTQ Peloton members have their own Facebook group. In fact, LGBTQ-friendly people have vocally moved to Peloton after competitor SoulCycle supported President Trump's anti-LGBTQ comments.

Values

  • Peloton customers are consistently cited as valuing community. Brad Olson, Peloton's Head of Member Experience, said that "community is integral to our brand and to the Peloton experience".
  • Tish Blodget, their Head of Global Brand, said that the company has grown as large as it has as quickly as it has " by building online and offline communities".
  • Peloton is often referred to as a "cult brand" and building community is a central focus of cult brands.
  • Peloton customers value quality. They're willing to pay more for a high-quality product.

Likes

  • Peloton's membership enjoys friendly competition. The Peloton leaderboard is set up so that cyclists can compete against one another and even choose specific types of riders to compete against.
  • Peloton customers are highly invested in their instructors as people. They follow them on Instagram, with Robin Arzon, Peloton's head instructor, having over 284 thousand followers. They can be highly defensive when the instructors are questioned and try to meet them in person at Peloton Homecoming each year.
  • Peloton customers enjoy listening to music as they exercise. Peloton's IPO statement notes that "music is an important element of the overall content that we make available to" the members and specifies that they will spend a minimum of $13.3 million in guarantee payments on music license agreements in 2020.
  • Members of the /r/pelotoncycle/ subreddit post regularly about the app's music.

Dislikes

  • Peloton customers have very strong tastes in music. They dislike working out to music they don't enjoy and, after the lawsuit in which a significant amount of music was removed from the service, members vocally complained about it and started using the service less.
  • Peloton customers hate being lied to. When Peloton offered "white-glove" delivery, and the company they contracted for delivery caused property damage, members took to social media en masse to complain, forcing the company to do a lot of damage control.

Lifestyle Features

  • Peloton customers also tend to engage in many other kinds of exercise. According to the Peloton blog, "active rest days" for Peloton users include yoga, walks, and swimming.
  • Peloton customers use social media liberally. According to Brad Olson, 81% of Peloton members are active on Facebook, with new customers invited to join the company's group. The /r/pelotoncycle subreddit has over 22 thousand members while members interact with coaches on Instagram.

Research Strategy

Your research team started by looking up the compiled data that exists for Peloton customer psychograpics. From there, we examined articles about Peloton's customer base, and interviews in which Peloton representatives spoke about the needs and attributes of their customers. We spread out into business articles about the various lawsuits and troubles Peloton has experienced.
Part
03
of five
Part
03

Peloton Marketplaces

Peloton's appearance on the fitness stage in 2012 created a revolution in the historically faddish industry. Despite concerning earnings reports and a somewhat disappointing IPO in August 2019, Peloton remains a phenomenon in the fitness industry. This may be most evident in its Canadian emergence in 2014.

PELOTON MARKETPLACES

  • There are 20.18 million Canadians between the ages of 25 and 64. This is the demographic identified by a study performed by the independent market research company, Ipsos, as perhaps the most available market since 70% indicated they would work out more if they could do it at home.
  • Peloton is currently leading the market in connected exercise machines and streaming fitness classes. It is the "go-to exercise regimen" of busy parents, CEOs and celebrities.
  • Peloton advances its technology by appealing to Canadians who want to workout, but want to do so on their own time and schedules.
  • Evenso, Peloton has challenges. It is suing Echelon Fitness LLC for patent infringement as Echelon makes its move into the bike-selling industry, and posted a net loss per share after just rolling out its IPO in 2019.
  • One of Peloton's fitness competitors in Canada, SoulCycle, is stepping out of its traditional spin studios to make its cycles available to anyone wanting to purchase one.
  • Two Trends in Peloton's market include the streaming-subscription trend and the trend towards staying at home.
  • The streaming subscription trend melts borders and is a $2.1 billion a month industry in the US, and Canada is not far behind, with 73% streaming live on a monthly basis.
  • Evidence of the trend toward staying at home by Canadians is supported by the Ipsos survey mentioned above, as the poll was conducted on behalf of Peloton..

RESEARCH STRATEGY

The number of 20.18 million Canadians between the ages of 25 and 64 was derived by taking the number of males and females, 5.04 and 4.98, respectively in millions, from 25 to 44 years of age, and adding the number of males and females, 5.04 and 5.12, respectively in millions, from 45 to 64 years of age. Thus, 5.04 + 4.98 + 5.04 + 5.12 = 20.18


Part
04
of five
Part
04

Peloton Company Analysis

Peloton is the world's largest interactive fitness platform with a loyal community of over 1.4 million members across the US, UK and Canada. Their main products include bikes, treadmills, and fitness apparel.

Peloton Interactive, Inc.

History

  • The company was founded in 2012.
  • It was a privately held business based out of New York, USA until September 25, 2019.
  • It is the world's largest interactive fitness platform with a loyal community of over 1.4 million members.
  • Since its birth, Peloton focused on bringing in top talent to create a new concept in fitness, the cycling workouts.
  • Throughout the years, the company has grown from a single location in New York to several locations in the US, UK, and Canada. Their most recent location was opened in Germany in 2019.

Products and Services

The company has four main products and services:
  • Bikes: rated at 4.8 out of 5. It is a spin bike used for indoor cycling that is made up of carbon steel and aluminum and provides a fully functional cycling experiencing with a choice of multiple gradient levels. The product comes with 90+ live classes that involve real-time instructor shoutouts, an on-demand library with classes that range from 5 to 90 minutes, and accessories such as dumbels, shoes, and earphones.
  • Treadmills: The company offers an all-electric treadmill with a 32 1080p HD touchscreen. The treadmill is built with carbon steel, aluminum slats with rubber overmold, and features a ball-bearing rail system. The product also has an in-built 5 megapixel frontfacing camera and a WiFi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac & MIMO 2x2 Antenna. The tread comes with daily classes, an on-demand library, and extra bar speakers, bottles, gears, and watches.
  • An additional subscription-based app services is provided to all customers. The app provides training videos, on-the-go motivation videos, and GPS support for pace, splits, and elevation metrics on iOS devices.
  • Peloton also sells apparel and accessories for men and women such as tops, pants, innerwears, wrap rings, bags, and logo patches.

Key Clients

  • Since the company sells all indoor products and services, they focus on individuals who purchase products to maintain a fitness regime at home.
  • However, the company has recently partnered with Westin Hotels & Resorts to get its bikes and classes in front of more of its target audience. They have additionally focused on spinning studios like SoulCycle and Flywheel to showcase their products.

Growth

  • Peloton has grown strategically since its inception by using the correct evolution of products, attention to right customer base, and a very effective marketing strategy.
  • The company had started planning for an IPO since 2017 and successfully filed it on September 25, 2019.
  • They were able to achieve a $400 million in revenue in 2017 which represented a two-fold increase since 2016.
  • Peloton has been using regular customer insight through surveys, not just to validate pricing and improve products, but to also improve its marketing plans. For example, when the company was first launched, it lacked a compelling brand story and focused mainly on a core, affluent audience. However, through extensive research, they were able to change its messaging and become successful.

Target Market

  • Their main target were the affluent consumers from the US, UK and Canada, with the potential customers mostly coming from the suburbs.
  • The company, later expanded to a broader market that consisted of less affluent consumers who can spend an extra for the convenience to get fit at their own pace and place of closing. As such, their primary target audience became the professional or semi-professional athletes who either do not have much time to train in the fitness center or love to maintain a healthy regime at their own pace and leisure time while being indoors.

Funding

  • The company received a total of 8 rounds of funding for a total amount of $994.7 million.
  • A total of 18 investors were involved in the funding rounds, with 7 lead investors.
  • The business has a valuation of $8.1 billion.
  • Peloton is currently trading on NASDAQ under PTON. Their initial shares amounted to $29 per share.

M&A activity

  • The company made two acquisition, Neurotic Media (June 2018) and Gossamer Engineering (Nov 2019).
  • Neurotic Media helps brands and mobile companies influence consumer behavior using popular songs and artists while Gossamer Engineering is a full-service, vertically-integrated, product development company.

Expansions

Peloton made its first move to Canada in 2018 by opening a store in Toronto on October 12.
  • They initially planned to open five locations in Canada but the number was increased to 10 after the initial success of their Toronto center.
  • According to Tim Shannehan, Chief Revenue Officer at Peloton, the Canadian locations feature Peloton branded elements and will ensure that members have the same seamless customer experience as in the US.
  • All the Canadian locations are highly interactive, allowing potential members to get on a bike, put on their headphones, and sort through the live and on-demand class library.
  • To achieve success, Peloton conducted some research with the help of Ipsos. The findings highlighted that three quarters of Canadians aged 25 to 64 found it difficult to make time to get to an exercise class and that they preferred to exercise on their own schedule. This helped Peloton to adjust its marketing efforts and engage with that particular audience.



Part
05
of five
Part
05

Peloton SWOT Analysis

Peloton has gained a generally positive reputation among customers, boasting an impressive 96% one-year retention rate and much positive publicity. However, some people can be put off by its steep price tag and need for ongoing subscription to fully maximize its use.

Strengths

  • Peloton has generated a social trend, where users uniquely bond over the shared love for the service. One reviewer calls it "cultlike".
  • Peloton uniquely combines several fitness trends: indoor cycling communities, screens and WiFi.
  • The service "bring[s] the boutique indoor-cycling experience (such as what you can get from SoulCycle and Flywheel) into the home, making it convenient for time-strapped business people, stay-at-home parents, and far-flung suburbanites to get in a challenging, competitive, high-tech pedaling session whenever they like."
  • The actual bike is designed well, contains a lot of extra features and technology.
  • Peloton appeals to a person's competitive side, so despite exercising 'alone' at home, they still have a leaderboard to compete against others or themself.

Weaknesses

  • Most of the perceived negatives about Peloton is the steep upfront cost plus ongoing subscription.
  • The bike itself has extremely limited functionality (and appeal) if users do not also subscribe.
  • The unit only has a limited warranty, which covers the touchscreen, mechanics, parts & service for one year.
  • It's possible that Peloton could issue software updates that further limit the bike's functionality for non-subscribers.
  • There is no pause function for any of the rides, which does not take into consideration that when exercising at home, sometimes life has interruptions.
  • Some users do not like that some instructors use profanity. However, this is clearly indicated by Peloton.

Opportunities

  • Peloton boasts an industry-unusual 96% one-year retention rate.
  • Peloton recently launched the Peloton Tread, a similar connected treadmill. There is further opportunity to expand to other equipment.
  • The company has put its bike in 50 Westin hotels, so users staying there can 'try before they buy'.
  • The company recently went public, so increased shareholder investment (and confidence) can help grow both the class and equipment offerings from Peloton. Additionally, increased interest from this could potentially drive down costs.

Threats

  • Peloton's main threats are its competitors, which attempt to emulate its offerings at a lower price.
  • For example, Echelon starts at only $840, includes a free heart monitor, and uses BYOD (bring-your-own-device) so users can use a tablet they are most comfortable with. Its monthly classes cost is also lower than Peloton.
  • Some users prefer this, as if they are not in the mood for class, their tablet can be used 'normally' to watch Netflix or browse social media.
  • A few other competitors are from industry-stalwart NordicTrAack (similar price but includes a free year of classes), ProForm (also similar price but with free year) or even a 'conventional' indoor bike rigged to hold one's own tablet.
  • Peloton's IPO is also a potential threat to consumers, as so far response has been lukewarm. This could lead to the company's performance affecting new offerings or price increases.
Sources
Sources

From Part 01
From Part 02
Quotes
  • "Community is integral to our brand and to the Peloton experience."
Quotes
  • "At last week's Chicago Ideas Festival Carolyn Tish Blodgett, senior vice president and head of global brand for the successful exercise equipment and media company Peloton, described how the start-up has gone from zero to a valuation of US$4bn in six years by building online and offline communities."
Quotes
  • "Cyclists can track their performance and compete against others through Peloton's leaderboard. Olson said they can also filter the leaderboard to compete against specific people, like men in their 30s or family and friends. "
Quotes
  • "“It has affected the way I work out. I find myself scrolling through classes for at least five minutes before I can find a playlist with 50 percent decent songs,” Ally, a full-time working mom from Chicago, tells The Verge. “It’s annoying.”"
Quotes
  • ""It's definitely made me steer away from the bike more than I used to. I am definitely not one of those 'I'm just so addicted to exercise' people ... I run a business from home with my husband and have four teens, so the escape of the music was a huge draw for me as I'm a huge music lover ... unless we're talking crappy '80s tracks, in which case no thanks," she said."
Quotes
  • "For me, the most powerful thing actually comes through on Instagram. That’s where they’re telling me their intimate stories—whether it’s how something I said on a ride empowered them to ask for a raise, or they left a shitty relationship, or they’re hurting and they come to the bike for a moment of freedom from their hurt. "
Quotes
  • "Within a couple days, Hallett’s post had 145 comments below it, including: “What's the point of even buying a Peloton bike if you don't want instruction?” and “I LOVE PELOTON INSTRUCTORS!!! I want & need to hear EVERY word out of their mouth!! You could go to a regular spin class, there you can't hear the teachers over the bad music.” And “hey buddy, it sounds like maybe your bike seat is shoved too far up your ass.”"
From Part 03
Quotes
  • "Thinking about what prevents them getting more exercise or physical activity, not having enough time (40%), being too lazy (29%) or the belief that it doesn’t fit with their schedule (25%) are the primary barriers. "
  • "Men are more likely than women to mention not having enough time (45% of men vs. 35% of women) or not being able to fit it in with their schedule (30% men vs. 21% women). Those aged 25-34 are most likely (42%) to say that laziness prevents them from working out more."
  • "Other barriers include: not liking to work out (22%), the belief that it is inconvenient to join a class or gym (15%), having not found something they like to do yet (12%), not having anything to help them stay active at home (9%), not having anybody to be active with (9%), or some other reason (16%)."
Quotes
  • "In 2018, there were about 5.04 million males and 5.12 million females between the ages of 45 and 64 living in Canada, which was the most out of any age group. The next largest age group was between the ages of 25 and 44, with 5.04 million males and 4.98 million females."
Quotes
  • "'Technology has changed everything, from the way we watch television to the way we travel – fitness is the next industry going through a revolution and Peloton is excited to be at the forefront of this movement,' said Kevin Cornils, International Managing Director, Peloton. 'Clearly, Canadians want to work out -- but the reality is that 80 percent want to work out on their own time, when they're available, not on someone else's schedule.' "
From Part 04
Quotes
  • "Founded in 2012, Peloton brought top talent together in its Silicon Alley headquarters to create a new concept in fitness. We loved cycling but had a hard time finding a workout that consistently fit our schedules, and our at-home workouts never felt quite up to par. So, we set out to create a world-class indoor cycling studio experience on your time, and in the comfort of your own home."
  • "Peloton uses technology and design to connect the world through fitness, empowering people to be the best version of themselves anywhere, anytime."
  • "OUR VALUES: PUT MEMBERS FIRST OPERATE WITH A BIAS FOR ACTION EMPOWER TEAMS OF SMART CREATIVES TOGETHER WE GO FAR"
  • "At-home fitness equipment has not evolved at the same pace as the group exercise classes that take advantage of trends in fitness, fashion and music to keep you motivated. Peloton has changed this by marrying sophisticated technology with beautiful and thoughtfully designed fitness equipment."
  • "We are more than just a class, a cycling studio, and a bike. We deliver a fully engaging experience with the technology to make every workout effective, and the social connection to make every workout addicting."
Quotes
  • "Peloton is the largest interactive fitness platform in the world with a loyal community of over 1.4 million Members. The company pioneered connected, technology-enabled fitness, and the streaming of immersive, instructor-led boutique classes for its Members anytime, anywhere. We make fitness entertaining, approachable, effective, and convenient, while fostering social connections that encourage our Members to be the best versions of themselves. "
  • "An innovation company at the nexus of fitness, technology, and media, Peloton has reinvented the fitness industry by developing a first-of-its-kind subscription platform that seamlessly combines the best equipment, proprietary networked software, and world-class streaming digital fitness and wellness content, creating a product that its Members love. "
  • "The brand’s immersive content is accessible through the Peloton Bike, the Peloton Tread, and Peloton Digital, which provides a full slate of fitness offerings, anytime, anywhere, through iOS and Android as well as most tablets and computers. Founded in 2012 and headquartered in New York City, Peloton has a growing number of retail showrooms across the US, UK, Canada and, starting winter 2019, Germany."
Quotes
  • "The company also has been partnering with Westin Hotels & Resorts to get its bikes and classes in front of more of its target audience, as well as expanding its showroom footprint across the country. This is all to boost growth ahead of a rumored IPO down the road."
  • "Peloton has emerged as a player in a crowded fitness space, which already includes spinning studios like SoulCycle and Flywheel"
Quotes
  • "According to the New York Times, the fancy fitness equipment maker did almost $400 million in sales in 2017, more than double the previous year. The reason: Peloton has prioritized service over just delivering a shiny piece of hardware for cash-flush fitness freaks."
  • "The company's price point is definitely higher than most established companies in the fitness equipment market. As Peloton SVP Graham Stanton tells The Drum, the price tags of its spin bicycle was based on research, which found “there are tens of millions of Americans who spend more on fitness than the cost of a Peloton bike when averaged over three years.” Insight showed that the Peloton bike is a bargain compared to high-end gyms and fitness studios."
  • "When you're charging a lot for your products, customers expect a lot from them. So naturally the company asks customers for feedback, so it can continuously improve its product and experience. Peloton surveys its members throughout their journey, and looks for trends across its email and social channels. It also makes sure to share those insights company-wide."
  • "Peloton uses customer insight not just to validate pricing and improve products—it also leans on research to evolve its marketing plan. For example, when the company first launched, it lacked a compelling a brand story and focused mainly on a core, affluent audience. But, through research, the company realized it needed to change course. "
Quotes
  • "New York City-based fitness company Peloton, known particularly for its luxury stationary bicycles that live-stream spin classes, is aggressively expanding into Canada with a network of retail stores. The company is picking some of the busiest and most prestigious addresses for its Canadian locations, similar to in the United States where it has stores in some of the country’s top malls."
  • "The company is launching an international expansion this fall that includes Canada and the UK. Peloton, which was founded in 2012. Peloton’s Canadian expansion will begin with five confirmed locations and according to Tim Shannehan, Chief Revenue Officer at Peloton, the Canadian locations will be similar to those in the US. “While we are not doing much build-out at our Canada locations, as compared to our standard US build-outs, we will definitely have Peloton-branded elements and will ensure our Members have the same seamless customer experience as in the US."
  • "The Canadian locations will be highly interactive, according to Mr. Shannehan. “The ability for potential members to get on the bike, put on the headphones, sort through the live and on-demand class library and ride the bike is very much a part of our retail experience”, he explained, going on to describe the stores as having four-to-five bikes in each location, along with Peloton-branded apparel as well as bike accessories. "
  • "The company says that it plans to open an additional 10 showrooms in Canada over the next 12-18 months. Markets such as Vancouver will no doubt be on the list. "