Erbaviva: A beauty brand turnaround case study

Erbaviva: A beauty brand turnaround case study with Air Paris

Last August, the organic personal care company Erbaviva celebrated its 20th anniversary and launched new collections in the facial skin care and men’s grooming categories. Before the fanfare came the work of rebranding a premium artisan portfolio for the current marketplace.

Here in conversation with Cosmetics Design, Dimitri Katsachnias, CEO at Air Paris, the agency behind Erbaviva's rebranding project, shares what went on behind the scenes.

At the start of your work with Erbaviva, what was the brand like and what was your overarching objective?

Dimitri Katsachnias: “Erbaviva is a premium organic skincare brand founded in 1996 by Robin Brown and Anna Cirronis, conceived with a unique positioning focusing on the experiences and care of expectant and new mommies, as well as for their babies.  In 2016, the objective was to make Erbaviva more modern and current and to build visual codes that define an upscale apothecary look.”

Say a bit more about your goals for the turnaround.

Dimitri Katsachnias: “The ultimate goal was to establish Erbaviva’s key elements in order to showcase the Brand’s values and convey a strong organic message. This would be achieved by intervening on the brand’s storytelling, its visual codes and packaging and building consistent visual territories for the Brand’s retail presence.”

What was your team’s strategic approach?

Dimitri Katsachnias: “Our creative strategy was centered on enhancing a modern and bright apothecary look for the brand. Defining ‘the new organic’ meant we had to establish the re-defined codes of the brand which would convey a bright and inviting look and feel. To set itself apart from other brands, we focused on the brand’s transparency: the way the product’s specificities were showcased on the packaging would allow the brand to connect with the consumer’s needs.”

What recommendations or changes did you make to the brand?

Dimitri Katsachnias: “A unique branding and packaging experience was created to express the Brand’s organic apothecary point of view. This was implemented across all categories (Mommy, Baby, Personal Care, SPA, Women’s skincare, Men’s) through the use of modern apothecary labels in soft pastel colors as a minimal yet informative and nurturing graphic code.

“Stamps were custom designed and incorporated on the front and back of the packaging to define the purity level of ingredients as well as the organic content and nature of each SKU. These stamps not only express the new apothecary codes of the Brand, but also establish a modern graphic element of communication.

“The Erbaviva retail space was designed to immerse the consumer into its bright, luminous and inviting universe. It re-invents modern apothecary elements, combining a mixture of organic nature, ingredients and friendly laboratory codes.”

How did it go?

Dimitri Katsachnias: “The rebranding process from the briefing to the release of the updated packaging took 6 months. The new look embodies an elegant ‘modern apothecary’ aesthetic that ideally complements Erbaviva's healthfully formulated, highly therapeutic organic personal care products.

“The new brand codes were received very favorably by distributors and the media. The new branding was perceived to be modern and relevant, in keeping with the brand’s core values, and provided a focal point for the Brand’s 20th anniversary.” 

What’s next?

Dimitri Katsachnias: “The next big challenge for Erbaviva, as for most organic brands, is to clarify in the minds of consumers what organic really is. There is always a lot of confusion between terms like natural, organic, green etc.” 

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