Proven Strategies For Wellness Brand Building
Over the years, our brand agency has partnered with many health and wellness clients to launch new corporate, product and service brands. While every brand launch is different, there are some common denominators of each new and successful brand building effort (some of which have come about since COVID).
Here are some observations about building a new wellness brand:
The Power of Brand Story
Stories are the thread that bind us to one another on a human level. Without a story, there’s nothing for customers to identify with, connect to and rally around. If you don’t lead with your brand story, you’re basically stuck offering category level features and benefits.
Your story is the foundation of your brand and a strategy for future growth. When your organization is led by story, it’s grounded in a framework of purpose, vision and values that inspire connection and commitment.
Important to remember is that you need to tell your brand story in a way that’s engaging, unforgettable, and distinct. You must use distinction and differentiation otherwise you will be blending in and not standing out.
Bake Science Into Your Brand Strategy
Anyone can still launch a beauty, skincare, supplement or vitamin brand, But today, consumers demand more than sizzle. They demand validation.
They expect buzzwords and unsubstantiated claims to be replaced by trustworthy, transparent and definitive communications and products that actually ‘do what they say on the proverbial bottle.” They also expect to visit a website and read about the nutritionists, dietitians, scientists, educators and other specialists behind your product.
Young people, in particular, are shifting their faith toward science, noted a recent report by Vice magazine. It revealed that more than half of young people will seek science-backed information more than they did before COVID-19 (see below). And a third will rely more on mainstream medicine in contrast to alternative medicine, seeking out facts and figures and making data-backed decisions.
Brand Values Beyond A Brand’s Visual Identity
Great brands today find new and positive ways to tap into and connect with people’s sense of self. They meet consumers where they are, instead of trying to force them into the story a brand wants to tell. Creating a relatable yet aspirational brand identity cultivates consumer trust in an era of skepticism.
Today, building a brand requires putting values, not visual identities, front and center. This plays into the larger movement of conscious consumption – where brands are making clear not only their purpose, but how they live up to it. The clean beauty movement is a good example – with brands like Beautycounter and Tata Harper demonstrating that consumers shouldn’t have to sacrifice their own safety for beauty.
From Digital To Omnichannel
The mass migration to digital – and the emergence of what’s been widely coined as the ‘new digital wellness consumer’ – has been one of the most pervasive impacts resulting from COVID-19. The new digital consumer, who spans all age groups, is embracing more digital products and services, adopting different modes of communication and forming online communities.
But at the same time, people can’t wait to get back to the gym, visit the spa and get back to eating out with friends. As such, a strong omnichannel experience, which enables customers to engage with services either in person, digitally or via a mix of both, is key. And, when done effectively this experience can help to keep customers within your wellness brand’s ecosystem.
For wellness brands to play the long game, they need to take into account how to cater to these different consumer personas and their respective behaviors – exploring and defining how to expand your core products, services and experiences to fit within different channels and to meet consumers where they live.
Create Community Connection
Effective branding is all about creating connections. And this is an extremely important concept in wellness given the importance of “we” in achieving goals. By tapping into consumers’s sense of their own identity, brands build a connection with their audiences. Brands that achieve fanatic-like status create a sense of connection not just with their consumers, but among them too. Think of forerunner WW (formerly Weight Watchers), and more recent examples like fitbit, Goop, Lululemon, Peloton and Soul Cycle, to name just a few.
A camaraderie forms among people who love the brand, which creates its own energy and propels the brand forward even more. This sense of community further fuels people’s affinity for the brand, creating a virtuous cycle that strengthens loyalty among the group.
Since 1999, our brand agency has partnered with clients across the health and wellness continuum to build stronger brand-led businesses. Reach out for a no-obligation consultation.