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By OppGen

The Ultimate Weight Loss Marketing Playbook

According to the 2017–2018 National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the age-adjusted prevalence of obesity in adults is 42.5% (1).

Adult obesity is projected to increase in the United States, and with it, the competition for the weight loss industry.

The weight loss market is saturated with competitors, from medical weight loss practices to household names like Jenny Craig and Weight Watchers—and even multi-level marketing companies like BeachBody and Herbalife.

The saturated market makes being able to stand out from your local competitors important, and that’s where creating a weight loss marketing plan comes into play.

The goal of this playbook is to help weight loss businesses— whether they’re a clinic or a business selling products — target potential clients despite the saturated market.

There are plenty of strategies for businesses of all sizes that can help them acquire more clients and increase sales.


Table of Contents

1. Current Statistics & Projected Growth

2. Considerations for Weight Loss Marketing

3. Weight Loss Marketing Ideas

4. Paid Marketing Strategies

5. Organic Marketing Strategies

6. Traditional Ad Channels

7. FTC Guidelines

8. OppGen’s Weight Loss Clinic Success Stories

9. Get Your Free Consultation


Current Statistics & Projected Growth

Despite losing a quarter of its estimated value in 2020 due to the closures of weight loss centers and medical weight loss programs during the pandemic, the U.S. weight loss market rebounded in 2021, recovering nearly all of its value at $72.6 billion (2).

Not every part of the industry suffered during the pandemic. While the revenue from medical weight loss clinics fell, weight loss products such as diet meals and drinks and prescription obesity drugs prospered.

In 2023, the U.S. weight market is estimated to be worth $80.4 billion—a 6.4% increase from the previous year’s estimated value of $75.6 billion (3).

One of the main contributing factors to this record-high market value estimation is the introduction of prescribed semaglutide injections like Ozempic.


Considerations for Weight Loss Marketing

Types of Weight Loss Services

Not all weight loss services and programs are the same, which means the audience will differ depending on the type of weight loss products and services. 


Natural Weight Loss

Natural weight loss clinics are best marketed as a healthy lifestyle coaching program. In our experience, we’ve found emphasizing that, along with customized exercise programs and meal plans, drives the most success in finding new prospects.

Focusing on using the right keywords is key with natural weight loss programs and clinics.


Medical Weight Loss

Medical weight loss clinics often attract people who have already tried a natural weight loss program and it didn’t work for them.

This means you may want to try to take into account a prospect’s:

  • Search history
  • Behavior
  • Interests

These prospects are typically looking for a more drastic solution to keep the weight off, such as a very low calorie diet, which involves eating 800 calories or fewer to shed one to three pounds a week.

In these kinds of diets, patients need regular medical supervision and monitoring.


Keto Diet Weight Loss

Keto, short for “ketogenic,” is a low-carb, high-fat diet. The goal of keto diets is to put the body into a state of ketosis, the metabolic state in which the body burns fat instead of glucose.

Keto diets can help clients shed body fat, keep them feeling full, and promote the loss of water weight.

Anyone can attempt the keto diet not only to get rid of body fat and to lose weight, but also for improving heart health and blood sugar levels.


Weight Loss Products

Weight loss products, such as pills, supplements, and specialized meals, may be included in a weight loss program or be sold as a separate service entirely.

Some marketing channels do not allow certain weight-loss products to be advertised. For example, Facebook prohibits the advertising of unsafe supplements, something the social media giant determines at “its sole discretion” (4).


Audience Considerations

Historically, we tend to see weight loss consumers search more for fitness and workout solutions than for diet and nutrition programs.

Though that runs counter to what most experts say about healthy weight loss, which involves exercising and a healthier diet for the long term, it is what consumers are searching for.

This means digital weight loss marketing strategies should focus less on dieting and place more emphasis on living an active life, even if improving diets is part of your weight loss program. Dieting should not be the main part of your marketing strategy.

Focusing on fitness as a whole applies not only to advertising copy but also to the visuals used in ads.

Dramatic before and after photos may seem like a great selling point, but in many cases, those results are not typical and may push prospects away. 

(*Not to mention that certain ad publishers, like Facebook, ban dramatic weight loss before and after photos.)

Use stock photos of people being active. The people in the images don’t have to be skinny (and they probably shouldn’t be too skinny, either — remember the 2019 holiday Peloton commercial?) 

Remember: Prospects want to lose weight, but they want to lose weight and keep it off in a healthy, realistic way. 

Advertising relatable people and sharing realistic weight loss stories is generally the best way to go.


Audience Personas

Creating audience (or buyer) personas can help put a face to an otherwise faceless audience. Audience personas are fictional representations based on data and knowledge you’ve gained from your clientele.

OppGen has created weight loss personas for clients using data from the top converting audiences and looked into the audience’s demographics and psychographics, such as:

  • Sex
  • Age
  • Income
  • Education
  • Parental status
  • Marital status
  • Ethnicity
  • Location
  • Interests
  • Search history
  • Website usage
  • Behavior 

All of this information can be useful when considering what kind of content you should be putting in your ads. It also gives you a clearer idea of “who” your ideal prospects are.


Weight Loss Marketing Ideas: How to Attract New Clients & Leads to Your Clinic


When persuading a prospect to get involved with a weight loss program or clinic, offering a free first consultation can go a long way.

Consultations can help prospects get a better idea of what they can expect. They can see if your program is a good fit for them and their goals. Plus, it allows them to get answers to any questions they have for your weight loss program or clinic that weren’t answered on your website or over the phone.

Be sure that your clinic is set up to deliver a great client experience because this is the moment you need to win the prospect over. 

They’ve already come a long way down the marketing funnel, so make sure that the consultation is worth their time and money — and yours as well.



Telemedicine, also referred to as telehealth, allows physicians and healthcare experts to assist and care for patients from a remote location.

Telemedicine weight loss clinics can give patients, prospects, and clients—as well as the clinics themselves—the ability to:

  • Check in more frequently
  • Share their progress or missteps
  • Ensure they don’t miss an appointment or typical check-in

Depending on the kind of weight loss service you offer, you may find it easier to show clients how to do certain kinds of exercises or run a group exercise program by streaming it through a telemedicine platform.

Telemedicine can extend your clinic’s reach since it goes beyond a physical address. It can increase your clientele.

Remember that telemedicine practice laws vary from state to state. Just be sure to reference the American Telemedicine Association for more information.

More patients or prospects can mean more revenue, which can let you expand your business or add more products or services.


Webinars & Seminars

Smart consumers are good consumers, so make sure your prospective clients know about what exactly your weight loss program or clinic brings to the table.

Offering a webinar or seminar to educate prospects shows them that you know what you’re doing and can instill trust in those prospects. Open up a Q&A session after the event. Then, attendees can ask questions in the seminar, that weren’t answered in the webinar.

For a prospect in the audience, that seminar or webinar might be what gets them to schedule a consultation and get involved in your weight loss program.

Like a consultation, this is a make-or-break moment for potential customers and your clinic, so you need to show them your best effort and work.

Show them that you know what you do and what you’re talking about.

Establish yourself as an expert in your field, even if you already are one. You don’t have to prove that to yourself, but you will have to persuade prospects.


Paid Digital Marketing Strategies for Weight Loss Practices

Paid Search Advertising

Paid search advertising is perfect for helping prospects interested in weight loss find your business online. Rather than putting out ads to find prospects, you can use search engines to help them find you.

Paid search ads ensure you’re getting qualified traffic and leads. 

Plus, they are geographically targeted, which allows you to serve these ads only to people in certain locations who have searched for specific keywords. Making sure the right prospects see the right ads is key to efficiency and success.

Search ads on Google or Bing look like search results and will be shown to prospects based on the keywords they’ve searched (as well as their physical location at the time of their search).

Every time a prospect clicks on a search ad, the search engine will charge you a certain cost. The cost of a click is determined by how much you are willing to bid on a keyword, hence why these ads are often referred to as PPC—pay-per-click ads.

Higher bids place your text ad higher on the search engine results pages (SERPs), and some industries tend to have more expensive bids than others.

Search ads, when done correctly, can be very effective at getting prospects to become paying clients.

As long as you know your target audience and the keywords they use to find your services, you’ll have no problem generating a steady flow of leads.


Display Advertising

Display advertising is another type of paid search strategy that involves placing image ads on websites based on a prospect’s search history, website visit history, or relevance of a web page’s content. These kinds of ads have a lot of different size options.

Display ads are most effective as a remarketing or contextual advertising tool.

Remarketing refers to the process of bringing a prospect who has visited your website or landing page but did not take an action (i.e., going past the home page, filling out a form, checking out items in the shopping card) and left the page.

Think of remarketing like leaving a reminder note on the fridge and on your phone to buy something so you don’t forget.

Remarketing ads will then show up on other websites prospects visit, reminding them to go back to the website and to take some sort of action such as scheduling a weight loss consultation.


Social Media Advertising

Advertising weight loss programs on social media platforms like Facebook and Instagram can be incredibly effective — with the right strategy, audience targeting, and setup. 

Weight loss is a more difficult industry to market on Facebook because of its stringent advertising policies.

Weight loss ads face more scrutiny, which scares off some weight loss advertisers and marketers. On one hand, it takes better copywriting skills and use of creative imagery, but on the other, you may have less competition.

Facebook’s ad policies encourage businesses to make better and more effective ads, and its audience targeting tools are powerful.

For weight loss clinics, Facebook’s behavior- and interest-based audience targeting tools can find prospects who have “liked” a number of weight loss programs, clinics, and diets, and as a result, may have participated in programs in the past.

Plus, Facebook offers a lot of advertisement types and options, making it one of the best weight loss marketing channels out there.


YouTube Advertising

In the weight loss industry, visuals matter, and one of the best ways to use visuals is through the medium of video.

YouTube advertising can allow you to harness the power of video by creating ads that will pull in weight loss prospects.

Like Facebook ads, YouTube ads offer more audience targeting tools and options compared to paid search.

You can:

  • Reach prospects based on their interactions with your videos (remarketing)
  • Raise brand awareness by reaching audiences with strong interests in weight loss
  • Find in-market audiences who are in the process of researching products
  • Find in-market audiences who are about to go all-in for a weight loss service or product like the ones your clinic offers

If you’re going to run a YouTube ad campaign, you need to have high-quality footage to use. This may mean outsourcing with a local studio that is capable of filming high-quality footage and editing it if you’re not comfortable doing it yourself.

If creating a 30-second-long commercial is not an option for your business, there are also non-video options. You can have in-video banner ads at the bottom of the video or have ads placed within certain spots on YouTube.


Organic Marketing Strategies

SEO for Weight Loss

Search engine optimization (SEO) is a strategy with the goal to increase a website’s organic search rankings for valuable keywords. When done properly, SEO can help your weight loss clinic’s website steadily grow qualified traffic over time, which will result in more leads.

A strong SEO strategy usually tackles all 4 aspects of SEO:


1. Technical SEO

If you want your weight loss clinic or service to rank high on Google or Bing, then you need a website that’s both fast and easy to use on mobile devices. 

If your clinic’s website is slow and difficult to use on mobile, then it may be time to redesign the website. 

There are a lot of design considerations to make, but ideally, you should keep it simple. Simple sites load quickly and look clean and professional — the way you want your site to look to attract new patients.

Depending on how your weight loss site is structured, you may also need to make site architecture optimizations to your website. 

This allows search engines to access pages more easily, which can help your website get indexed and ultimately rank better for more keywords.


2. Local SEO

Unless your weight loss clinic is a national brand or franchise that has locations all across the country, you need to have your business rank high in local search results. 

Whenever someone searches for “weight loss programs” or “weight loss programs near me,” the search engine will use the searcher’s location to determine where the nearest weight loss programs are. 

If your weight loss program is nowhere to be found on the first page of local results, then it’s time to change that.

Creating a Google Business Profile page and ensuring you’ve either claimed or have made other relevant business listings in local directories can alleviate that issue and make sure your business is easy to find.


3. On-Page SEO

On-page SEO is no longer about stuffing a page with keywords you want to rank for. 

Search engines can “read” more like people can, which means it’s not the best idea to repeat the same keyword 25 different times — in fact, it can work against you.

This means you have to create in-depth content about subjects related to your weight loss program and prove to the world you are an expert in what you do: helping people lose weight.


4. Off-Page SEO

Word-of-mouth marketing is one of the most powerful forms of marketing, and this is what off-page SEO comes down to:

  • Link building
  • Social media shares
  • Positive reviews

When high-quality websites link back to your site (or people share your social media content), search engines view this as a signal that your website has good information and give you a boost in the rankings.


Content Marketing

Content marketing is essentially a more specific on-page SEO strategy. This means crafting relevant, in-depth content that provides value to your target audience.

Not keyword stuffing a page.

Write for real people, not search engines, and research what keywords are going to be helpful for clients and prospects and for higher rankings on Google.

But it’s more than that. 

Content marketing involves planning and creating a content calendar and figuring out a distribution and publishing strategy.

It goes beyond blogging, too — it can include:

  • Social media
  • Images (photos or infographics)
  • Videos
  • Podcasts
  • And more

With content marketing, you need a consistent voice and brand that shows who you are and what you’re doing, regardless of medium.

Having a disconnect between any of these things will turn people off, so it’s important to be consistent in everything you do.


Social Media Management

Having an organic social media presence is important, and not just because having a business page or account allows you to create ads.

It can be one more place for improving your local SEO, where you can have your current address and phone numbers. Also, some social media sites allow patients and clients to leave reviews.

You can also communicate a number of things. Here are a few ideas to get started:

  • New services
  • Changes to your clinic’s hours
  • Introduce a new staff member
  • Share a patient’s story with their permission
  • Share your latest blog post

Essentially, you can share any content that’s relevant to your clinic and patients.

You can also communicate with prospects easily on some of these social media platforms over private or direct messages, which can be more appealing to prospects who don’t like making phone calls.

Managing a social media account for your weight loss clinic also gives you pretty solid data about who your prospects are, as well as when your posts are most effective and what kind of content attracts the most prospects.


Referrals & Reviews

Reviews and referrals are both word-of-mouth marketing strategies that are highly effective. 

Encouraging current clients to leave reviews on Google, Yelp, Facebook, and other platforms can benefit your weight loss clinic. Search engines will recognize that your business has positive reviews and can bump you up on the SERPs.

If having more reviews means ranking higher, get as many positive reviews as possible.

Reviews and testimonials can also be used in other marketing strategies as well. For example, you could use client testimonials (with their permission) in paid social ads or film a client’s testimonial for a YouTube ad.

People generally trust reviewers, particularly when researching a weight loss program, service, or product.


Traditional Ad Channels

Local Radio & Video Advertising

Local radio and TV spots are both options for advertising weight loss programs, though the latter may be expensive depending on when you want your commercial to air and on what channel.

Expect to incur some production costs, too. You may need high-quality footage and professional editors for any form of TV commercial.

Radio commercials require quality recordings and some knowledge of audio editing, but it’s not nearly as time-consuming as TV commercials are for getting the quality you should have. 

Certain radio stations have certain audiences as well, so keep that in mind when deciding which station should air your commercial.


Newspaper Ads & Press Releases

Though they may not be doing the best in terms of sales, newspapers do accept advertisements and in some cases, press releases.

The cost of a print newspaper ad depends on a few metrics:

  • Location: Where the ad is placed in the paper
  • Circulation: How many readers can you expect will see the ad
  • Size: How much space the ad will take up in the paper
  • Color: Black-and-white or color
  • Frequency: How many times the ad appears in the paper
  • Publication date: The day of the week the ad is published 

Ads for smaller, local papers tend to be more affordable than those in a national publication. Plus they have the benefit of having local readers and subscribers in the area. 

If you live in a smaller town with a small paper, you may consider sending in a press release in advance and requesting the publisher to print the press release in the paper.

Press releases are free to publish, but be sure to give your local newspaper some time in advance. Sending a press release on the day of your event or announcement often means it won’t be published on time. 

Some newspapers publish press releases on their website, too, which can be easily shared on your weight loss clinic’s social media pages.


Deals & Promotions

Offering special deals and/or promotions can get prospects through your weight loss clinic’s doors and help them decide whether or not your program is the best option for them.

Consider the following:

  • A free consultation
  • Free trial
  • Contest for a discount
  • Raffles or drawings for clinic reviews

Get creative with what you can offer prospects to entice them to start your weight loss program.


FTC Guidelines

As with any kind of marketing or advertising strategy, make sure you are following the Federal Trade Commission’s (FTC) laws and guidelines as well as those of the marketing channels you’re using.

The FTC has an entire webpage (FTC.gov/WeightLoss) dedicated to educating consumers about weight loss programs and products. This webpage is not only a good resource for consumers but also for those marketing in the weight loss industry.


OppGen’s Weight Loss Clinic Success Stories: Past and Current Clients

Lifelong Metabolic Center

Lifelong Metabolic Center, located in Naperville, Illinois, is an emerging natural weight loss clinic. Naperville is a highly competitive space for weight loss clinics, where quick-fix weight loss solutions and fads tend to beat out more effective, professionally operated weight loss clinics.

Lifelong Metabolic Center needed to establish credibility, gain visibility, and generate high-quality leads in the most efficient manner possible.

They decided to partner with OppGen, a marketing agency with a history of marketing in the weight loss industry. OppGen created a holistic marketing program that included paid search ads, paid social media ads, and SEO services.

The results:

  • 40+ leads per month
  • 35% increase in the number of new patients per month
  • 80% lift in revenue


Elite Medical & Wellness Center

Elite Medical & Wellness Center, a premier anti-aging clinic in Port Orange, Florida, offers its patients prescription and medical weight loss programs.

With some assistance from OppGen’s paid search, social, and SEO plans for weight loss marketing, the clinic has seen more leads and more weight loss patients as a result.

The results:

  • 1 lead per day average


Help Grow Your Business with a Stronger Weight Loss Marketing Campaign Strategy: Contact OppGen for a Free Consultation

There’s a lot that goes into an effective weight loss marketing program, and this playbook is simply a starting-off point.

For more in-depth weight loss marketing strategies, contact OppGen, an established digital marketing agency that has helped weight loss businesses succeed online so they can succeed offline.


  1. 2017–2018 NHANES Summary
  2. 2022 MarketResearch U.S. Weight Loss Market Status Forecast
  3. MarketResearch Blog: 2023 U.S. Weight Loss Market Update
  4. Unsafe Substance Facebook Ad Policy

By OppGen

How to Market Weight Loss Programs to Men

When it comes to marketing weight loss programs, men are by far one of the more difficult segments to persuade to buy in. Given that men make up roughly half of the world’s population, they make for a good market. It’s really just a matter of figuring out how to best market a weight loss program to them.

Luckily for you, OppGen already knows how to market a weight loss program to men. Click here to learn more.


Emphasize Fitness and Healthier Lifestyles

Don’t create a message centered mainly on weight loss and/or diets. This may sound like the opposite of what you’re trying to market, but when it comes to marketing weight loss programs to men, making weight loss central is not effective. Instead, you should be focusing on fitness.

Google Trends data shows that people search more often for the word “fitness” than “weight loss,” which is especially good to know for weight loss marketing in general. Using fitness as a keyword keeps you out of the Google Search results for weight loss, where you’ll be competing with local competition as well as big names like Jenny Craig and Weight Watchers, both of which focus heavily on nutrition and dieting. (Generally speaking, the weight loss industry is heavily saturated with fad diets that may or may not work.)

Diet is an area where men struggle. Food marketing itself has already impacted what men and women choose to eat in unconscious ways; men are less likely to eat healthier foods than women are and are likely to be more stubborn about changing their entire diet. This means you should focus your message around living a healthier lifestyle. Instead of discussing removing foods from diets, talk about adding new healthier foods to consumers’ diets or portion control.

Even if improving clients’ diets is part of your weight loss program, it should not be the main focus for marketing it, especially when marketing to men. Don’t focus as much on concrete numbers of weight lost — focus more on words and phrases like fitness, healthy lifestyle, staying in shape, workout, program, exercise, portions, control and so on.


Discuss Differences Between Weight Loss Programs for Men and Women

Your pay-per-click (PPC) and paid social media advertisements won’t be able to cover this subject in-depth, but your website, landing page(s), and social media accounts certainly can and should.

If you’re running a weight loss program that’s built specifically for men, go into detail about why your program is for men, what makes it different from other programs that include women or are targeted toward women, and so on.

Writing blog posts or social media posts about this subject and any similar to it can help prospects determine whether or not you’re an expert in your field. Writing high-quality in-depth blog posts with useful information tells prospects that you know what you’re doing, and you’re knowledgeable enough to be a trusted resource. Establishing that trust is what will have prospects converting to clients. 


Use Visuals of Men in Your Ads

This is probably a no-brainer, but if you’re marketing weight loss programs to men, your display ads should have images or videos of men. These don’t have to be handsome men who have washboard abs or balding men who have a beer belly; in fact, they probably shouldn’t be on extreme ends of the weight loss spectrum.

Ideally, they should be somewhere in the middle. According to the CDC, the average American man over the age of 20 is 5-foot-9 and weighs 197 pounds. While the visuals you use don’t have to be that exact (and they are not going to be that exact), you should be using visuals of the kinds of men most people see everyday — an average man, if you will.

Using images of “average” men makes your advertisement more relatable and appealing, and most importantly, realistic. If your advertisement makes it seem like your weight loss program is something that can be realistically obtained, your audience will be more likely to click through the ad and follow up with the call to action.


Don’t Be Afraid to Make Your Ads “Manly” — But Don’t Overdo It

There’s a fine line between creating digital weight loss ads marketed toward men and Bic for Her pens that ended up being the butt of a joke on afternoon talk shows.

It’s not inherently bad or wrong to highlight masculinity or femininity in your weight loss programs, but doing it in a way that’s over the top can attract attention that may do more harm for your business’s reputation than anything else.

If you’re advertising on social media (Facebook in particular), it’s easy to ensure that your ads are going to be seen by men with ad targeting options, so by all means, make it manly. But with PPC or display ads, it’s going to be trickier to ensure that only men are seeing your ads. When creating copy and visuals for these advertisements, it’s best to tone things down.


Contact Us for More Weight Loss Marketing Ideas

For more ideas on how to run a successful weight loss marketing campaign for male audiences, contact us today. You can also fill out our free digital audit so we can show you where your current campaign falls short and how it can improve.

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The Ultimate Weight Loss Marketing Playbook
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How to Market Weight Loss Programs to Men