Lets talk about your product! Let’s begin with two essential truths.
First, there are many excellent beauty and wellness brands already on the market, with more being launched every day. Many of these brands come with incredible packaging, compelling founder stories or trendy ingredients, while others boast celebrity backing or hard-to-get clinical data. This means you need to be noticed in this very crowded space. You not only need to be noticed you need to be remembered. Whatever your message is, one this is for sure, your point of difference needs to be very clear, specific, understandable & relatable. If you are solving a problem spell it out, make the buyer understand.
The buyer also wants to know that you understand your target market which may not be the buyer and it may not be you. They need to know that your target market is their customers. The buyer will also need to know how this is going to address their customers needs. Buyer wants to know that it works. Once you have convinced the buyer then its time to talk abouts its features eg price, colours, ingredient profile, sustainability, any validations etc
Consumers use products, but fall in love with brands. This is why large brands spend millions of dollars on marketing their brands. However, we don’t all have that budget. Your branding must clearly articulate the point of view your brand holds. It needs to look exciting to the consumer. Your brand should be relevant to your point of difference. Your brand needs to be consistent not just with your brand story and your packaging but with your language, social media etc.
Now your Packaging
Packaging is not a waste of money. Every retailer puts in their top 5 criteria. Your packaging is a reflection of your brand, and you may not get it entirely right the first time but it is worth investing the time to get it right. Don’t break the budget doing it but do it well. Make sure that is works, if a customer purchases a product and the packaging fails they will not be lining up to buy it again. It also needs to be reliable. You could be shipping your product anywhere and when it arrives you don’t want it to be sent back because it got damaged in the shipping. It needs to be legible; it needs to articulate clearly what it does and why and what with. It needs to be attractive to the consumer and the buyer from the first impression to it sitting on the retail shelf.
What about Supply?
As a small brand, you do not want to be the cause of inefficiency or problems with a major retailer, which is why you need to make sure you are 100% ready to deliver for that retailer. Some larger retailers don’t give you a second chance. You need to address regulatory requirements in the countries and market you are going to supply in to. If you are supplying into Europe you need to meet the EU standards, If you are making substantial claims in Australia you need need be compliant with the TGA (eg sunscreens) If you are selling your product in an overseas market you may want to engage a local agent. Some larger retailers have very specific packaging and delivery requirements that you will need to meet.
Brand Support and Pull Through
Being in a Retailer doesn’t guarantee success. You need to be able to get it off the shelves into a consumer’s hands. The retailer will want to see a plan of how you are going to do that to support them stocking your product. Some of the ways you can do this is by putting bundles together, a GWP (gift with purchase) a special offering for a limited time. Retailers love to be trained on your product. They may ask you if you have specific training modules. The more they are trained, the more they love your products and the more likely they are to recommend them to their customers. The retailer also likes to see that you are invested in your brand by actively promoting it in their store. In addition to instore they might want to also see how you are going to promote this externally to drive the customer into their store to buy your product. Once this is in place with the Retailer you need to keep it there. It is very important that you manage the retailer and maintain a good relationship with them.
Remember that it doesn’t happen overnight it’s a journey and it’s your journey so enjoy it.