Accidental Success in the Market

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I remember going to the road safety centre when I was in primary school and learning about safe driving. They said,

“There’s no such thing as an accident. We call them car crashes because they are always a result of someone’s mistake. Car crashes don’t just happen by accident.”

In a recent discussion, it was suggested to me that a particular brand had done well in  China “by accident”. The considerable success of the brand in question was not due to the actions taken by the brand team and the rest of the company in executing a focused plan to enter that marketplace. Rather, the brand and its team had been successful purely because consumers had come to the producer’s home region and pulled the product through.

It was clearly my colleague’s position that the brand’s team could not take the credit for their own success; that somehow the credit belonged to clever resourceful intermediaries recognising an opportunity in the market and playing the arbitrage. In this theory clever and resourceful micro entrepreneurs sought the brand out and resolved its effective distribution.

To say it was a point of contention would be an understatement.

You know what I say? Bravo!

Their brand and product clearly offered a solution to a consumer problem so effectively that the consumer sought them out and went to lengths to place them in a market where the company had limited access or distribution. In this instance the success was so great that it created a supply challenge.

Brand success doesn’t happen by accident. Success happens when intent, purpose and value all work together consistently and authentically to meet a need. Brand success is the result of clear messaging, which occurs through trustworthy, reliable and consistent behavior.

Sure, sometimes aligning of consumer trends with product offers can help boost profile, but the original offer has to resonate to have any chance of achieving this brand’s level of success.

In the same way, brand failure is often the result of not watching the road, or focusing too much effort racing the guy in the next lane, while tuning the radio, eating a hamburger, and checking your makeup in the mirror all at the same time. It’s no surprise – and no accident – when it all ends in a crash.

Repost: Bellamy’s Organic’s winning formula impresses on ASX debut

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“But the most important thing we’ve done is develop a brand.” – Laura McBain, CEO

See original article HERE www.smartcompany.com.au Wednesday, 06 August 2014 1:42

by ELOISE KEATING

Investors have welcomed Tasmanian baby food producer Bellamy’s Organic onto the Australian Stock Exchange with open arms.

Shares in the formerly family-owned company were initially offered at $1 but trading in the stocks opened at $1.31 at 11am on Tuesday before quickly rising to $1.34.

At the time of publication, the stocks were trading at $1.38.

The strong debut has given the business a market capitalisation of more than $120 million, significantly higher than the $95 million indicated by the initial public offering.

One of the shareholders keen to secure a piece of Bellamy’s was BRW Rich Lister Bruce Neill, whose company Quality Life has snapped up a 8.62% share in the organic food producer, according to Fairfax.

Twenty-five million shares were offered in the initial public offering, with the total number of shares in the company now totalling 2.2 billion.

As previously reported by SmartCompany, the IPO also allowed Kathmandu founder and former BRW Rich Lister Jan Cameron to sell down her stake in the business.

Bellamy’s Organic managing director Laura McBain described the debut as “outstanding”, telling SmartCompany this morning the strong result “shows the confidence investors have in the Australian food industry, not just within Australia but in other countries too.”

McBain says the good news for the company was also boosted yesterday with one of Bellamy’s long-term partners, dairy producer Tatura Milk Industries, receiving official accreditation as a supplier of certified organic baby formula in China.

“This is something we had expected to occur, it’s great for us,” says McBain. “It’s a great time for us to be able to let everyone know our growth strategy is on track.”

Bellamy’s Organic was founded as a family business in Launceston in 2004, before being purchased by investor group Tasmania Pure Foods in 2007. The company produces around 30 products which are 100% Australian-made and certified organic.

McBain describes Bellamy’s journey from a “mum and dad business in Tassie” to an ASX-listed company as “an amazing story”.

“It’s a little bit of creating your own timing,” says McBain. “And you’ve got to be ready to take the opportunities as they arrive.”

McBain says Bellamy’s “started out with just a few people doing lots of things”, but over time the company has built the infrastructure and processes it needed.

“But the most important thing we’ve done is develop a brand.”

“Bellamy’s is a trusted brand and mums really engage with it,” says McBain.

“And we’ve made sure the brand is not just for Australian mums but resonates with every mum around the globe.”

Partnerships with other suppliers, such as Tatura Milk, have been essential to Bellamy’s success, says McBain.

“Partnerships are really important. We’re really good at what we do and [our partners] are great at doing what they do. It’s a great model to integrate our experience and knowledge and work collaboratively,” she says.

Janine Cox, senior analyst at Wealth Within, told SmartCompany Bellamy’s strong debut is a “great result for the people who have invested in the stock and the company”.

But Cox says it’s important to “factor in we’re in a bull market” and that can influence whether or not a stock exceeds expectation.

Cox says Bellamy’s debut also highlights the importance of timing for companies preparing to float, and believes the company gained popularity because it “offers something a bit different”.

Cox says the real test for Bellamy’s will be the in the three to 12 months after listing, as more information becomes publicly available about the company.

Brand Design In The Baby Space

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Marque’d continue to be involved in a number of baby and child focused brand and design projects. These projects present a special challenge in achieving trust and acceptance from the consumer. This is due to the highly sensitive and emotionally significant subject – the flourishing of one’s own child. The instincts of a parent to protect their child are eternal and the dominant consideration when shopping for consumables in areas such as food, personal care, toys and equipment. The risk associated with the wrong choice comes with severe consequences, so consumers – parents – are on high alert, looking for anything out of place, anything dissonant that might signify a warning. For the producer and designer, designing to visually appeal to the consumer is one thing, but one cannot assume that an attractive product or packaging alone will do the selling.

The internet is overflowing with forums and blogs about parenting, offering anecdotal evidence about what is best for babies and what parents should avoid. There is so much feedback from numerous channels and the pressure to perform as a good parent can be overwhelming. Parents look for ways to verify the safety and reliability of a product by word of mouth, especially recommendations from family and close friends; professional endorsement and, in the absence of these key references, retailer endorsement and the cues from the brand and product itself.

Parents research products before buying on brand websites, cross referencing websites, product reviews, and forums. A recent PeopleShop study conducted by ARC found that toys and baby food are THE most researched products with 83% of those surveyed believing that, “it’s really important to buy a brand you trust.” Parents will research product ingredients on where and how they are sourced; possible side effects and their link to rare genetic deficiencies; and whether they hold any intellectual advancement properties. While this might sound daunting for the producer, it also offers opportunity for transparency to your brand’s benefit – provided, of course, your product is in fact good for baby.

Place of manufacture often plays a role in reassuring customers that your product has been made to the highest safety standards. The reputation of some countries over others for the production of baby formula for example is taken very seriously. Bellamy’s Organic’s addition of the Made in Australia logo to their export baby formula packaging highlights the importance placed on this information especially in Asia and for the Chinese market in particular.

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ECO. Modern essentials have ranged face and body care products primarily for women up until this year when they extended their range to ECO.Baby. Though the core range has always sourced natural and organic ingredients with some products certified organic, ECO. chose to produce their baby range as exclusively organic, certified by the national organisation A.C.O. (Australian Certified Organic), offering to the consumer an independent verification of the authenticity of their claims about the safety and purity of their ingredients. Retailer positioning in national family goods chain Target acts as retailer endorsement for the quality of the product.

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The very rewarding result of successfully branding in the baby space is that when you win a customer you often keep them for life, and as long as you keep up your end of the brand promise, they often become an advocate for you to the next generation establishing that very powerful word of mouth recommendation to those who are most eager to receive it.