Pick up a Baja Baby bottle today; the packaging looks simple, clean and good quality. That was the desired intention. But believe me when I tell you that the road traveled to get us to this point was anything but clean and simple. What we thought would take a few days ended up taking months of deliberation. To this day, I'm still surprised that we managed to produce the product that we now have.
For the record, Kelly and I loved our first bottles. We thought we had done a great job in our packaging. Our bright sunshine bottles made us feel happy, but as I told you in a previous blog, the design was a collaboration between me and my then four-year-old son messing around on an iPad. There was no big swanky boardroom discussion. It was a case of what we were able to pull together using the resources that we had available to us!
Our new manufacturer very gently and tactfully told us that what our current offering in the market perhaps wasn't as wonderful as we thought that it was.
Simple questions were posed to us like, "Why do you have a fish on the bottom of the label?" We really didn't have a good answer for that other than, "Because it's cute." FYI My husband swore blind that the fish was not a fish but it was, in fact, a bird (like one of the Angry Birds). Readers - you decide. Fish? Or Angry Bird?
During that first meeting, it was explained to us that we could and should do better with our label, AND our formulations. If our goal is to have the best skincare brand for kids on the market, then there was no alternative but to change EVERYTHING!
First things first, we started to talk about our packaging and how we wanted it to look. To this day I am still committed to changing the vessel that the product comes in. I'd like us to find the resources to offer a 100% biodegradable bottle. Because we're such a small company we don't have the funding for that currently, but it always a work in progress. (Anyone who's reading this that has a connection, please let me know and I'll contact them to see if they'd like to help us with this endeavor :-).)
Then we set about working on making our label a true representation of our brand. Kelly and I are moms and we love being moms. We also love quality products. We like to buy good quality things for ourselves and for our children and we wanted our new packaging to reflect our sentiments.
Almost four months went by of deliberations and going back and forth with designers. We wanted the branding to reflect where we both live, (the Baja) so we wanted a little nod to our home state. We wanted to create something that a mother would look at and say, "That's beautiful, and that's a luxury item."
As much as eye-catching brightly colored packaging for kids is wonderful, I sought something elegant and clean. I knew all too well that Baja Baby was a virtually unknown brand in our market and so I wanted a potential client to be able to look at our bottle at a glance and know that it was high quality. I think that we've done that with the packaging that we have.
While I could talk about all details of the packaging, I'll choose the #1 most important detail to me: the shiny, silver badge on the front of the label. That badge represents so much to me as an entrepreneur, as a woman, and as a working mother. That badge represents the money that I earn, and the money that all moms in the world earn.
I want the mom who purchases our product to feel like their hard earned money is well spent. I also want the badge to represent a badge of honor for moms to feel acknowledged, that they are worth the moon and stars to their children, that they're making the best decisions for their children by choosing Baja Baby products.
But there was one slight issue - nobody else liked the silver badge. We ran the concept by so many friends and family, and very few people liked the idea of it. I even taped 4 different design mock-ups to my wall. Every time someone would come into my home I asked for their preference. And my silver badge rarely got rated.
As I agonized over the right thing to do, I ran across an article from Forbes that talked about a few strategies when it came to packaging. The article said that if I could stand outside a store and describe what my label looked like to a 5-year-old, and have them go into the store and find it amongst its competitors... then it's a winner.
And that's what did it for me. The silver badge was chosen. And now that we have brought it to life - we absolutely love it.
Do you think we achieved what we set out to do? As always, your feedback is critical to us. Please drop me a line at firstname.lastname@example.org with any feedback you may have.