Developing a successful supplement brand requires more than just a good idea to become viable. Many newcomers in the supplement business are unaware of the more technical details involved in the process of developing their product, often finding themselves expending undue time and resources on correcting avoidable mistakes. While entrepreneurs are much more likely to fall into these habits due to inexperience, even seasoned industry leaders still make these errors.
Here are the 6 most common mistakes supplement brands make and how to avoid them:
1. Not defining their target customers.
Defining who you want to sell your brand to is the key to making informed decisions on all aspects of your product, from what ingredients you use, down to how it is packaged, and in which way it is marketed. Doing so also gives you insight on whether there is a market to be sold to at all, a step that is often overlooked by business owners in the early stages of developing their brand.
Choosing to focus your marketing techniques on a certain audience does not inherently preclude others who do not meet your target demographic, though. Rather, it allows you to market more efficiently and effectively to those who do. Without a massive budget, marketing effectively to every type of consumer is virtually impossible. Instead of trying to win everyone over, choose a smaller group of consumers who are unanimously seeking a specific result, and provide them with the means to achieve it.
2. Labeling their products inaccurately.
The FDA’s regulations for supplement labels are stringent and require certain procedures to be followed to protect consumers from harm. Your company may already have a graphic designer on its roster but unless they’re experienced in FDA label compliance laws, their design may be inefficient or even in violation of federal law.
To avoid the unnecessary expense of scrapping unfit labels, be sure to hire a designer who specializes in creating FDA-compliant labels. Additionally, partnering with an experienced contract manufacturer ensures that the labeling process remains as uncomplicated as possible. Paragon Labs offers a thorough label proof process, designed to be a double-check that your label is FDA compliant and ready for production. Our experienced packaging professionals will confirm that your label meets GMP requirements to ensure a smooth and successful full production run. For more insight on designing an FDA-compliant label that will stand out among the rest, read our helpful guide on how to create an effective, accurate label here.
3. Focusing too much on scientific claims.
Consumers are bombarded with scientific claims every single time they walk down the supplement aisle in the supermarket. Brands spout percentages, topical facts, and data in their marketing methods, forcing the consumer to do mental gymnastics trying to decipher the best option. While relaying this pertinent information gives your customer a reason to purchase your brand, too much science-based marketing can drive customers away.
Refrain from relying heavily on parroting scientific claims in your marketing technique; this allows you to avoid becoming “invisible” among the rest to your target audience. Use these figures to instead corroborate the efficacy of your product and to prove how your product can provide the customer with the results they desire. This process becomes easier when you know your target demographic well, as we discussed earlier in this piece.
4. Being overly competitive.
Many new brands make the mistake of competing with leading brands in the supplement industry, who are rarely concerned with competing against copycat products. These industry giants have excellent marketing techniques, effective packaging, and know their audiences very well, all while earning the reviews to back up their claims. For every dollar their competitors try to save by using lower quality ingredients and gimmicky packaging, these large suppliers are easily spending twice that to maintain their own good reputation and high standards.
Simply put, instead of using your marketing budget to top your competitor, focus on creating a brand that caters to the specific needs of your target market in a meaningful way. If you are struggling to find a way to market your product, then take a look at our guide on how to do so online. In it, we discuss why online sales are steadily increasing in today’s world and how you can make it work for your supplement brand.
5. Being unclear during the development process.
One of the biggest mistakes your supplement brand can make is being unsure of the details surrounding your product. Before engaging with a contract manufacturer, you will need to define all aspects of your brand, including your timeline for production, your target audience, the ingredients you do (and do not) wish to use, and your marketing strategy. Additionally, you will need to identify your “mission,” the underlying and driving force behind why and what your supplement brand does.
Outlining answers to these questions ahead of time can put you into a better position once you are ready to start investigating contract manufacturing. You can avoid costly setbacks by clearly defining what you need from your contract manufacturer ahead of time and by doing thorough research in the preliminary stages of development. If you need assistance, your contract manufacturer can assist you in setting a product completion timeline, as they are well-versed in several new product development processes. Looking for a place to start? Visit this list of 7 questions you should ask your contract manufacturer to determine your needs.
6. Putting too much emphasis on standing out.
Producing a unique and noticeable brand is important, but the costs associated with custom packaging are often high and many manufacturers implement minimum order quantities (or MOQs) to reflect that. Producing custom packaging also takes longer and may require you to purchase significantly more product than you need or are able to store at one time.
Newer brand owners are often better off at the beginning choosing a small batch with a simple design, putting their budgetary focus back on how best to market their product to their target audience. As your brand becomes more successful, you may consider making changes to your packaging to better reflect your brand’s voice and message.
Developing a successful supplement brand is no small feat and preparing your company to avoid making these common mistakes gives your brand an opportunity to put its best foot forward at every turn. By partnering with a GMP-certified contract manufacturer who truly cares about providing the best product possible, you know your company’s needs are being met.
At Paragon Laboratories, our state-of-the-art on-site facility allows us to meet both your highest quality standards and tightest deadlines. Additionally, Paragon’s proven process of development will help you clearly visualize the goals of your brand to produce a product that you and your customers can get behind. If you are ready to begin this process, contact us for a free quotation today.