Branding challenges when operating in a crowded category


James Edmunds

Managing Director @ TRIP

Credit: The Independent / IStock.

A recent 2020 survey found that over 8 million Brits purchased CBD products in 2020. By the end of 2020, this sharp spike in CBD demand saw the industry's revenue grow by 50% compared to 2019. In such a saturated market, how can one use branding to stand out from the crowd?

When TRIP founders Olivia Ferdi & Daniel Khoury started to use CBD back in 2018, many of the UK's CBD products were packaged in brown bottles, with green logos and plain packaging. Unable to find a product or company that matched their values and vision, they created TRIP to present a more accessible and sociable way to take CBD.

James explains the importance of product packaging and also authenticity across the brand’s social media platforms. "At TRIP, every element of the user's experience is important to us. CBD's positive effects are just as important as the rituals our users create when they take a TRIP;  thereby, every brand touchpoint is crucial. That extends through the look of the packaging, pastel tones, and soft-touch bottles to the feeling that we aim to create through our social content. We don't have strict brand guidelines; our aim is that all the brand elements encapsulate and communicate the feeling that TRIP gives.”

James continues by discussing market placement "One unique thing about the CBD space is that many products fall into 'Wellness' as well. This means companies need to brand in a way that appeals to two markets." James says that "the brand was focused on these two markets from its inception. Olivia & Daniel wanted to create something that looked and felt good - giving customers a feeling of calmness, visually and tactilely; continuously maintaining the quality and the function of the product. From the outset, we knew that we wanted to create a brand that stood on pillars of quality and authentic functionality."

"If you have a strong foundation and purpose, then the product is going to be attractive to the traditional CBD market and the ever-growing wellness market"

"When we considered our branding and of course noting that we are operating in a very saturated space, we were very mindful that our brand values would become another element that would be used to differentiate our brand. Starting with the packaging, we wanted everything about the product to reflect our core values of being playful, aesthetically pleasing, and most importantly high quality. We also consciously made a decision to make all of our products fully recyclable."

James ended our discussion with a quick advert "We hope that our values enable us to develop branding that makes our consumers feel comfortable incorporating CBD into multiple moments in their daily routine, making TRIP convenient, sociable and accessible.