Iogo gets kids to eat their vegetables

The brand's Nano line is infusing natural ingredients and convenience messaging into a redesign and in-store program.

Launching this month, Iögo Nano is hoping to bring more healthy choices and fun to the yogurt aisle by introducing a line of flavours that mix fruit with vegetables.

Banana and squash, blueberry and beet, as well as peach and carrot will be available in the traditional cup format, with apple-cherry and beet in portable, drinkable pouches.

Simon Small, VP of marketing at Iögo parent company Ultima Foods, says the new flavours are a way to capitalize on trends around more healthy ingredients, which fit in with Nano’s existing reputation among parents for making those ingredients more fun for kids.

“Helping parents add fun to flavours, as opposed to just talking about how good they are for you, really added value and resonated for them,” he says. “Iögo’s yogurt is already natural and healthy, but if you look at the nutritional info, it’s dairy-based. No one’s getting a full serving of vegetables from it.

“We’re not disguising the vegetables, we’re putting them out there, front and centre, in a way that is fun, which is what gets kids to try them and has built trust with parents.”

Along with the new flavours comes new packaging for all Iögo Nano products, the first in a planned redesign for all Iögo products. Compared with the old design, the new packaging makes the Nano brand more prominent, with Small describing Nano as its own brand “endorsed by” Iögo, as opposed to just another part of the portfolio.

Nano is now a brand that can stand on its own, with over 50% market share for yogurt brands aimed at young children, says Small, adding that the redesign is a way to provide a constant identity in a category that is highly competitive and frequently expanding.

“There’s a ton of innovation coming in and new segments being created, which we’ve seen with portable, snackable and drinkable formats,” Small says. “Iögo Nano has always stood for innovation and been among the first in those formats, so we needed to puff our chest out if we want to not only stand out on the shelf, but communicate one brand across all those different segments.”

The new flavour launch is being promoted using an influencer-led campaign with social media personalities and bloggers trusted by parents. There is also an extensive in-store program, with displays emphasizing Iögo Nano’s convenience and natural ingredients, something that will stand out during a time of year when parents are looking for things to include in lunches as they plan their daily routines ahead of back-to-school. Cri Agence in Montreal handled in-store elements, with Alfred handling social.

Small says that while the messaging and nature of the displays may be described as fairly traditional, it’s the best way to communicate in the yogurt category, which can sometimes have 250 SKUs in certain sections, but is often competing with snacking options in other aisles as well.

“We know one of the biggest barriers to the category is confusion at shelf and not being able to navigate,” Small says. “Yogurt is also not just a dairy product, because it competes with other snacks and has to keep up with the same trends, like portability and health. Yogurt speaks to all of those, but people often just don’t see it. When someone comes in to buy their standard yogurt, being inspired by being shown a lunch box solution for your child is a good way to get a product in and drive awareness.”