September 18, 2017

6 Ways to Market Your Nutrition Brand Like the Enemy

All high fructose corn syrup, mystery goo and Red Food Dye #7 set aside, unhealthy brands have always been amazing at promoting themselves. And though you don’t necessarily want consumers to mistake your nutrition company for Hostess, there’s really no reason you can’t capitalize on the same methods that junk food brands have utilized in the past. Without further ado, here are six strategies to steal from unhealthy brands when marketing your next product:

1. Have Fun with the User Experience

Nobody eats PEZ because the candy tastes good. They buy it because it’s amusing to suck a sugar pill out of Spiderman’s neck. Sometimes nutrition companies are so focused on substance, that they forget the impact that a little style can have on selling their product. Once you have your four-ingredient granola bar or high-protein, flaxseed whatever down to a science, figure out how to make it more enjoyable for people to use.

2. Invent a Mascot

What do Tony the Tiger, Ronald MacDonald and Joe Camel all have in common? Stellar brand recognition. Sometimes the easiest way to put a face to your brand is to literally give your brand a face.

3. Incentivize the Experience

A little reward can go a long way. Just ask the mother of any kid who insists on going to McDonalds for a Happy Meal toy or chomps through box after box of Fruit Loops to find the prize at the bottom. From bubble gum and baseball cards to soda pop and super sweepstakes, junk food brands have always found ways to tempt customers with more than just taste. Don’t be afraid to do the same.

4. Give Your Product an Iconic Form

No other cookie looks like Oreo. No other chip stacks like Pringles. And (Skittles withstanding) no candy looks like M&Ms. Having a unique form is an easy way to create unique advertising. Of course, highly-processed foods have a distinct advantage when it comes to making a form that is both highly unique and highly consistent, but if you have the opportunity to give your product a unique shape or color without sacrificing nutrition, take it.

5. Use Famous People

I am fully aware that soda treats my stomach like Rocky Balboa treats a walk-in freezer full of hanging meat. But when I see Lebron James chugging a Sprite on TV, I almost believe it holds the power to turn me into a 10-foot-tall dunking machine. Show me the same commercial with King James housing a superfood smoothie and I’m buying that product, 100%.

6. Seize Any Opportunity to Surprise and Delight

What’s the best part of drinking a Snapple? Why, it’s that Snapple is incredibly refreshing, of course! But the second best part is that there’s always a fun little fact on the bottom of the cap. What might have once seemed like an afterthought has become recognizable enough to turn into a full marketing campaign. Don’t sleep on the opportunity to delight with your packaging because the payoff could pleasantly surprise you.