Meditation is becoming more mainstream in America, boosted by the popularity of experts like Deepak Chopra and Eckhart Tolle. Meditation studios are appearing more often in major cities, and meditation classes are increasingly being offered in the workplace and college campuses to combat rising societal stress levels and to raise worker productivity and morale. Last year, 22% of employers were expected to offer mindfulness training.
Over the past 20 years, meditation and mindfulness-based programs have become increasingly important to Westerners. Doctors are embracing meditation not because they think it's hip or cool, but because scientific studies are beginning to show that it works, particularly for stress-related conditions.
Following are some things to know about this emerging market:
- Market growth: The U.S. meditation market was estimated to be valued at $959 million as of 2015, growing to $1.08 billion in 2016 and $1.21 billion in 2017. Average annual revenue growth is forecast to be 11.4%, to $2.08 billion by 2022.
- Customer demographics: Approximately 9.3 million U.S. adults have used meditation in the past 12 months. The profile of a typical meditation user is a middle-aged female, highly educated (college or higher education degree), non-Hispanic White, and residing in a Western state of the U.S. — very similar to the profile of a self-improvement consumer.
- Meditation studio revenue: There are an estimated 2,450 meditation studios or centers in the U.S., mostly non-profit organizations. They generate $659 million in revenues. These centers work closely with yoga studios (which have also grown in popularity in recent years). The “average” meditation center grosses about $269,00, but non-profits are smaller, at $165,000.
- Key organizations: Market research reveals that 369 of the U.S. meditation centers are operated by three organizations: Kadampa Centers, Transcendental Meditation™, and Shambhala Centers.
- Top meditation apps: There are at least 1,000 mediation smartphone apps now on the market. Headspace is the market leading company here. Meditation apps, websites and online courses generate $100+ million per year. Some leading apps are: The Mindfulness App, Insight Timer, Calm, and Buddhify.
- Meditation products and services: Americans can now learn to meditate via a wide variety of programs and products, including smartphone apps by Headspace and 1,000 others, via videos, books, DVDs, online courses and publishers such as Hay House and Gaia, that stream content for a fee. They can go to a posh retreat for a day, weekend, week or more, or attend a course at a holistic institute.
UPDATE: For new cutting-edge research on the meditation market, see Marketdata's latest article "$1.8 Billion U.S. Meditation Market Grows with New Apps and the Growth of Yoga," which draws on data and insights from the report The U.S. Meditation Market.
About the Author: John LaRosa is the President of Marketdata LLC and is the author of 100+ industry and market studies. His research appears in top media outlets including ABC, CNN, Fox, Forbes, USA Today, The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, and a variety of trade journals.