Over my career working with food and drink businesses, I’ve learnt that successful brands in the sector are rather special – focused, brilliantly disruptive and optimised to powerfully engage consumers – whether that be online or in store.
I provide the foundation for exceptional creativity, stimulating the manifestation of innovative products, stand-out brand personalities and brilliant packaging designs, ignited by intelligent and exciting thinking.
This requires an in-depth understanding of societal, technological and consumer behaviour supplemented by questioning and challenging, by defining the opportunity, identifying the audience and their needs states and by the creation of a robust strategy.
I deliver the expertise for product ideation, product development, product optimisation, the manufacturing process and differentiated structural packaging, inform the commercial planning process, introduce potential investors, identify the most effective routes to market and assist with retailer introductions where appropriate.
With products, brand and packaging in place I support the brand lauch into retail or online and devise and implement marketing and social media activation plans which outhink rather than outspend the competition.
But there is the detail to take care of too, so I advise on trademarking, ingredients compliance, food labelling legislative considerations and adherence to advertising standards guidelines. In short, I have all the skills to make new ideas a success.
I know from numerous clients that they have valued my expertise as I’ve helped and guided them through the various stages of the manifestation of their idea and created sales opportunities on their behalf through my extensive network of influencers and decision makers.
And as an independent, I can bring together the best and most cost-effective team for each project, managing all stages of the process from initial brief through to completion, using my experienced and long-standing, trusted partners chosen specifically for their project-appropriate skills.
I truly believe I’m extraordinarily lucky to have a career which excites and inspires me each and every day through the people I meet and the challenge their objectives present. The thrill I get from creating success for my clients is the best reward for the total commitment I give to each and every project.
Business start-up – from concept to launch
I advise and mentor entrepreneurs, food and drink start-ups and early stage businesses to enable them to realise their ideas, achieve their ambitions and become established, profitable and successful brands – creating and implementing a robust brand strategy and supporting and advising them every step of the way.
Defining, developing and creating product concepts
I provide the expertise required to take a product idea and turn it into reality – managing the journey from ideation through concept shaping and product development – defining all costs, sourcing ingredients, identifying the manufacturing resource and optimal structural packaging solution and determining shelf-life.
Brand design and packaging design expertise
I create the strategic direction and provide the project management for the commencement of structural packaging solutions, brand design and packaging design, supplemented with advice and guidance on trademarking, legislative food labelling requirements and regulatory compliance – ensuring a seamless and efficient transition of a concept through to packaged product, ready for launch.
I devise marketing strategies including digital, social media, experiential, advertising and PR using experienced partners to deliver integrated activity seamlessly. And the growth in omnichannel and smart search devices which are shaping brand communication landscapes and consumer relationships are also considered within this mix.
Consultancy and mentoring support
I advise entrepreneurial businesses on the broader aspects of bringing a new product to market by challenging, guiding, advising and assisting them with the additional aspects of their business concept, strategy, commercial planning, long-term goals, routes to market, investor introductions, retailer relationships, manufacturing solutions, warehousing and logistics and pre and post-launch marketing activity.
Rebrands and growth initiatives
As well as working with new brands, I help and advise clients with their strategy for rebrand tasks or help them shape innovations for the next stage of their business growth.
This includes environmentally friendly packaging alternatives for example which can create significant traction with major retailers in this more enlightened age.
And most recently I’ve been working with a number of start-up businesses in the weight loss, sugar-free, protein and dietary supplements categories. This includes BoomBod which became the UK’s leading diet brand within just six months from launch.
Devising and delivering research programmes
I also define quantitative research programmes and design and moderate qualitative focus group activity as well as designing Vox Pops and straw-poll street research.
ON THE RIGHT TRACK?
I’m often approached by early stage food and drink businesses when they have already started the development of their product or idea and with this in place, they then turn their attention to finding help for their brand design and packaging design.
Many of them have then told me that they wished they’d approached me sooner, as they’d realised through working together, how vitally important it is to fully explore and understand all the aspects that can impact on the creation of a successful product and brand at the get go, particularly concept feasibility and manufacturing processes.
In some instances my involvement has seen the product development phase revisited for example, with formulations and packaging formats changed to facilitate cost-effective, commercial manufacturing – or in other instances, the creation of a truly differentiated and exciting product concept with significant USP’s.
In most, providing an understanding of the costs and commercial considerations of launching a new brand and undertaking an evaluation of how to optimise the sales potential by getting the positioning and pricing strategy right have proven to be vital, increasing the profit opportunity as part of this work.
I also provide the expertise for differentiated, innovative and exciting structural packaging solutions, identify the most effective routes to market, advise on trademarking and legislative considerations in relation to labelling compliance and determination of shelf life and manage all stages of the design process.
Having a robust project map at the outset is key and I break down each project into specific tasks and timelines which are understandable, manageable and shape the progression of the task every step of the way.
Take a look at Process to see more.