Retailers worldwide are looking to cash in on the natural and organic trend, which has grown approximately 18% each year since 2003, reflecting changing social and economic norms. Some, like Wal-Mart, are addressing the underlying social and environmental concerns of its consumers through policy shifts with its suppliers. Consumers, who used to have to venture to specialty stores or natural grocery chains for a full product selection, are finding natural and organic offerings making their way into the mainstream marketplace.
One such brand is Noah’s Naturals, recently launched in 366 Wal-Mart stores. The brand includes three product lines: It’s All Good, for hair and body; Honest to Goodness, for hair, bath and body; and Heal Thyself, a line of aromatherapy products. All products are paraben-free, and the three lines’ appeal is aimed at consumers who want alternatives to high-priced specialty brands.
“The natural and organic movement, we believe, is much more of a lifestyle shift than merely a trend. Further, we see an enormous opportunity to bring earth-friendly ingredients that work to bath and beauty consumers starving for great products at a real price point,” said Noah Bremen, CEO of Noah’s Naturals.
With his background in product marketing of health, beauty and personal care brands within the mass market arena, and spotting developing categories, Bremen believes venturing into the natural arena was simply the next logical step.
“As my team and I studied future trends, we saw in late 2005 that all the planets were coming into alignment for natural beauty care. Plus, I have a real passion for bringing amazing products to the masses at great price points,” said Bremen. A marketer at heart, he founded, in 2000, Bdirect—a company that migrates top trends into the mass market—on the premise that the business rules for traditional product brokerages needed rewriting, in order to capitalize on product trends. Bdirect will guide the strategic direction and vision of Noah’s Naturals.
Marketing a natural line in such a crowded marketplace requires a great story and quality products that deliver functional benefits. “Noah’s Naturals stands out first and foremost with the most effective, performing natural/organic formulas available in the mass market. Further, the price points are competitive to traditional beauty products, available in mass while offering discounts of 50% or more versus similar premium products in specialty stores,” said Bremen. The company has also developed a merchandising kit to drive consumers to the shelf.
Building a brand’s reputation and presence requires skillful retail placement for optimal growth. “We partnered with Wal-Mart early on because of their shared passion and ability to bring great product to the masses at an affordable price point,” said Bremen. With this partnership under his belt, Bremen is looking for other retail opportunities to connect his brand with its target consumer base.
“We are involved in several exciting conversations with multiple retailers across all classes of trade right now to help them develop brands, merchandising and marketing to capture their fair share of the multibillion dollar natural personal care market,” said Bremen. “We expect to significantly grow distribution of one or more of our brands throughout 2007 and beyond. Additionally, we have a few proprietary soon-to-launch consumer efforts that will position us for significant growth.”
Mass market represents the mainstream, a measurement of marketing prowess. For natural brands, mass market also signals into the mainstream. Entering Wal-Mart signals growth for Noah’s Naturals and vindicates the man who saw the trends in the planets’ alignment.