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Thought Leadership for Healthy Food & Beverage Brands​

Why Being Healthy Is Not Enough

A Call for New Ways of Developing Brands for the better-for-you F&B CPG Industry

By Leonard Grape

The world demands to be healthier. But many better-for-you F&B CPG brands remain to exist in silos. An important aspect is missing to make their products become the preferred and not just the alternative.

We envision a healthier world where people are more inclined to choose to eat and drink healthy. This is the future for the healthy food and beverage industry. This is the calling of plant-based, vegan, vegetarian, non-GMO, and other better-for-you F&B CPG brands to affect the world in a grander scale. For this to happen, people should realize the benefits of living healthy and must fall in love with brands that empower them to do this.

But what is the way forward for brands in the industry? Where do we begin to see things differently so that clarity for a path of opportunity can unfold?

We believe it starts by asking - why is just being healthy not enough?

How Do You Go Beyond Healthy?

Our belief is that the only way to make better-for-you F&B CPG products become the norm is by growing to be brands that can connect with their customers in a deeper way and build lasting relationships.

It’s the exploration of new and better approaches of relating to consumers emotionally, of appealing to their worldviews, and of intentionally portraying a desired image unto the world so more can follow the journey to a healthier eating lifestyle.

Every better-for-you F&B CPG brand must answer these questions – what do I bring beyond just offering healthier alternatives? What can I do to positively affect and empower more people to transform their lives? How can I cut through the swarm of unhealthier but more desired F&B choices? How can I come out of a silo and build tribes of customers?

Going beyond healthy means focusing more on the higher needs and deeper desires of customers. It is acknowledging that to say you are healthy is never going to be strong enough. It is imperative to have a brand that has a powerful emotional layer that can influence perceptions, move purchase decisions, build loyalty, and create more impact.

It’s through a new way of brand development process that this can be figured out. It’s through meaningful differentiation and creation of an emotional registry that a brand moves from just being liked to being loved by customers.

Change the Way You Build Your Brand

We view brand development as the overlap between the science of emotional buying and man’s hierarchy of needs. It is building a sustainable brand that addresses not only the basic physiological needs of the consumers but also affects their self-esteem and empowers their being.

Brand gives you this power. It is your entry point to the subconscious mind. It is how you move in the minds of the people you are serving from being just an option to becoming a part of their lives and even of who they are.

A deeper look at the power of emotion and how it overlaps with branding can give better-for-you F&B CPG companies an opportunity to grow their brands even more effectively.

Typically, a better-for-you F&B CPG company will offer products that focus on healthy and honest ingredients - junk-free, organic dairy, meat alternative, fruit-based, vegetable-driven, vegan, and such. It highlights what makes the product healthy - less sugar, no preservatives, protein-rich, made from plants, and all-natural.

Then it stops there. A huge mistake.

The opportunity to build an emotional connection is lost. It becomes transactional, lacking the effort to build an emotional connection and a lasting perception. It dismisses the need to connect to the subconscious to create delight, build brand love, and encourage loyalty.

It is time to change the way better-for-you F&B CPG brands are built. For more people to choose a healthy lifestyle, better-for-you F&B CPG products must dive deeper on what their brands stand for, what position of perception they desire, and what emotional registry they command.

Finding the Brand Overlap

The goal of appealing to consumers at a deeper level is at the core of our brand development process. It possesses the necessary components to humanize a product and to give it the ability to resonate to the mind and then to the hearts of the consumers.

The value proposition and unique selling point relate to the mind. The brand archetype and personality clarify your character and reinforce your narrative, in effect, storifying your way to the heart. By going deeper with your mission, values, and identity, your brand can empower your market to a whole different spectrum.

The way we approach Brand Development is by looking at the key emotional triggers of a target audience and how these relate to their various levels of needs. This is what we call the Brand Overlap – the intersection of the science of emotional buying and the understanding of man’s hierarchy of needs. Approaching brand development in this manner can be game-changing in the entire brand structure of your products that can bring in more loyal customers and yield to better business results over the long-term.

Become Preferred by Customers

Brand Development in this essence is elevating your healthy food and beverage product from one stage to another in the world of your customers. It starts with your target market being aware of your brand – who you are, what you offer, and the product benefits. Again, this is only enough to trigger a sale but not to establish an enduring relationship.

The next level is for your brand to have a clear unique position within the minds of the customers you’re serving. How do you relate to their worldview and how should they perceive you? The next stages would be impacting your customer in a way that affects their feelings and ultimately empowers them to pursue their own sense of self. What is the emotional resonance of your brand?

In this context, Brand Development becomes the pathway that bridges your product towards a more meaningful connection with your consumers. This starts by learning more about your audience and caring more about their feelings and desires.

What is it that you fulfill besides nourishing their bodies with healthy ingredients?

What is it that you give them that makes them feel better about themselves?

What is your connection to them that makes them proud to tell others about your brand?

If you can answer these with clarity, you are equipping your brand with the ability to positively influence people’s perceptions and affect their emotional registry.

This is how you ultimately overcome choice fatigue and win the battle of options by discovering a way to differentiate your product beyond just the features, beyond just the healthy ingredients.

A Healthier World

The world is in a war to be healthier. Our firm is on a mission to lead the charge of creating brands that make healthy food and beverage products become the norm, not the alternative.

You’ve chosen to join this battle.

Let’s make sure you have all the ammunitions to win.


2022 The Vineyard. All Rights Reserved.​

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We help healthy F&B companies develop brands that are loved by customers.​

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