As always, smaller entrepreneurial companies drive new product creation and are the real engine behind category creation. I come from the world of invention and new product development presented to the marketplace via direct to consumer testing through National TV sales. I can provide example after example of product campaigns that started off as home grown basement inventions that resulted in Fortune 500 acquisitions that literally created retail categories as well as competition amongst the major brands. Need I mention OxyClean, Flawless, Shark Vacuums, My Pillow, Dyson, Scunci Hair Products, Copper plated kitchenware, Copper Fit, plus the multitudes of dietary supplements and now CBD.
Don't think for a second that entrepreneurs will sit idly by without innovating and ultimately creating products that will change the
landscape of personal protection equipment as well as wellness products forever. The major brands have always been slow to react, they follow the trends, wait for the smoke to settle, study the data and as always two years down the road either they acquire or weild their leverage with major retailers to attempt to own the shelf space.
Innovators and product people like myself have acquired the innate sense to identify solution based products that excite and compell a purchase. The "I got to have it now" is the first sniff test for any new product campaign. There inlies the very core of product creation. However, in the past, preventative products for the most part don't fall under that category with the exception of specific products like hair loss products, etc. The Covid-19 Pandemic has potentially blown this theory up and changed everything we know about preventative products that fill an immediate need but provide results that are not tangible, or even visibly immediate.
Before Covid if I had put a unique NEW type of hand sanitizer in front of a retail client even with a novel delivery system backed by real science the reaction would have been, "Oh, nice, ya my planogram is loaded with P&G & Purell, what else you got" . If I had put this new product on TV and advertised nationally the campaign would have died the first rotation week it aired. Well not any more! Once again, it will be us, the entrepreneurs, the risk takers, the inventors that will drive this category with new products that solve the very problems that age old products not only fail to address but will take the majors a few years to catch up. Without giving away the secret, I will tell you that SeraLabs has not only expedited the creation of NEW PP products that eliminate dry hands while killing germs at the same time but also we have cultivated new delivery systems, containers, sprays, that are positioned to cater to the not just the CBD client but the all new "Preventative Conscious" customer category. Wow, who knew this would ever be a real thing. Looks like we have created around 300,000,000 new Germaphobes throughout this nightmare so to all the major brands, "Get behind us as you usually do"!
About the writer:
John Cammarano is currently lead brand strategist for Sera Labs Inc. and has developed over a dozen consumer branded products throughout his career spanning over 25 years resulting in over 2 Billion dollars at retail.