Alive makes an energetic mass market debut

The Nature's Way multivitamin hits grocery shelves with its first big media buy.

Nature’s Way has been reshaping its branding and that of its component brands in a bid for a broader retail presence. To support moving its Alive multivitamins from health food stores to grocery shelves, it has launched its first-ever mass marketing campaign.

Alive’s marketing to date has been very niche – health food publications and in-store material at local health food shops. Working with Tribal Worldwide Canada, new television, online pre-roll and display and social media creative hit the market this week, all driving to a new product website.

It’s the brand’s largest media buy to date, and it extends into the fall. Wills & Co. is overseeing media duties.

“Consumers are more interested in nutrition and proactively managing their health,” says Gillian Aiken, VP marketing at Nature’s Way. She says awareness and product trial are the top priorities for the campaign. “From a positioning standpoint, we think the product’s real point of difference is around its brand character.”

Aiken says the dominant multivitamin brands have “very clinical and scientific” brands. “If you look at the ad and our packaging, Alive is very energetic and bright. It’s fun and a bit more down to earth.”

And because Alive has a higher concentration of B vitamins, which, among other things, helps metabolize food and extract energy, energy is a big part of the messaging.

“From a regulatory perspective, we can’t really talk about giving [consumers] more energy,” Aiken says. “So talking about energy via the brand character was a way in.”

The overarching Nature’s Way brand is also set to shift over the summer. Currently billing itself as “North America’s leader in herbal medicine for over 40 years,” Aiken is leading an 18-month project that will see a greater reliance on an “integrity” positioning.

“It won’t deviate too far, but how we portray it will change. In this industry, there’s a real range of how much you can believe from different brands. We’ll be playing strong on the integrity front…We launch products based on science, not just because it’s a business opportunity. But we’ll also fall back on the heritage ‘natural’ message.”