Inside Splendid Spoon’s Recent Rebrand + Startup Branding Tips
By: Carli Evilsizer | March 12, 2019
In the startup world, a strong brand can be the difference between the startups that fizzle out and the ones that thrive. This is why many startups can often be found contagiously working on improving their branding. For example, Splendid Spoon, a holistic wellness brand that is rethinking the way people eat, lose weight and relate to food through ready-to-eat, plant-based meals, has recently undergone a complete rebranding.
We’ve been loving their new branding and recently had the chance to chat with Alex Hagney, the Creative Brand Producer at Splendid Spoon. She worked with their branding agency, HUMAN NYC, and had the opportunity to help with everything from mood boards to packaging design to sourcing creative talent.
Keep reading to learn more about Splendid Spoon’s rebranding experience, what it’s like to be a Creative Brand Producer at a startup and Alex’s best advice for startups looking to improve their own branding.
Splendid Spoon’s Creative Brand Producer Alex Hagney’s Startup branding tips
Splendid Spoon is a satisfying plant‑based meal program that is ready-to‑eat, pre-portioned, calorie‑controlled, and made with only whole ingredients. It’s the most convenient way to shed unwanted pounds, feel healthy, and change the way you think about eating, for good.
Creative Brand Producer at Splendid Spoon
1. Tell me about you! How did you end up becoming the Creative Brand Producer at Splendid Spoon?
From dancer, female and community activist, marketing/creative student at Skidmore College, I found myself at Splendid Spoon, a holistic wellness brand that is rethinking the way people eat, lose weight, and relate to food through ready-to-eat, plant-based meals. While at Splendid Spoon, I’ve developed a love for the way things look. From branding to content to IRL experiences. With the support of my team, I’ve been able to transform my role from Special Projects Coordinator in 2016 to Brand and Communications Associate in 2017 to now, Creative Brand Producer!
2. So what exactly does a Creative Brand Producer do?
A creative brand producer (at least at a startup) coordinates and manages any and all creative projects; think photoshoots, print, event production. For almost three years I’ve managed the development of Splendid's visual personality through digital branded content. I not only produce and manage creative content for digital, print, and social, but also assist with product development, paid marketing creative, event production, and e-mail marketing communication.
3. I’m in love with the Splendid Spoon’s new branding! What was the rebranding process like?
This past January we rebranded Splendid Spoon with HUMAN NYC branding agency. It was the most challenging, yet rewarding project I’ve worked on (& definitely the project I’m most proud of). I was involved in every step, from the manifesto to moodboarding to packaging redesign to sourcing talent for digital and print assets to integration. Moving from creative project to the next, you always have to keep in mind the larger question, will this decision ultimately lead to acquiring new customers, will existing customers understand our new position? I learned a lot about the creative process by working & collaborating with our cross functional teams as well as Human NYC.
4. Why did the team decide to rebrand Splendid Spoon? How did you know this year was the right time for a brand refresh?
We were ready to transform the brand into something that felt more accessible; like eating a bowl of soup. We wanted the site experience to make you feel warm, nostalgic, at home. In our first few years as a business, we were primarily focused on operations, recipe/product development, and customer experience. Once we had those pillars in place, we refocused our attention to brand identity and redesigned with our customer base in mind.
5. What do you think is the most important part about creating a startup brand?
The people. If you are surrounded by passionate, hard working, and creative people you’ll attract those types of thinkers. Looking back at the past 2.5 years at Splendid, I can confidently say that the wins wouldn’t be possible without drive and energy of each person on the team.
6. Besides design, what are other ways you can bring a brand to life?
IRL (in real life) events. Event production (especially for e-commerce brands) is a great way for consumers to digest your brand face to face. Events are a great way to bring a brand to life because you get to take your brand identity and transform it’s personality into an experience for other people to enjoy.
7. What was the hardest part about branding Splendid Spoon?
As a team, the hardest part about (re)branding Splendid Spoon was making sure we were sticking to our story and repositioning strategy. There’s a lot of moving parts when it comes to brand identity. How do you take your story and translate it to copy, digital assets, website wireframes, customer communications, social media, down to your logo? You want to make sure the story makes sense start to finish, without any question marks or bumps.
“It’s okay to be different, it’s okay to experiment.
Be sure your brand identity stays true to your story
& most importantly have fun while doing it!”
8. Do you have any advice for a startup looking to create their brand identity?
It takes time- you’re basically creating a life for your brand; their personality, their friends, their interests, their purpose and future! Creative decisions are made methodically, you not only have to make sure everything looks good side by side, but also feels good. It’s okay to be different, it’s okay to experiment. Be sure your brand identity stays true to your story- & most importantly have fun while doing it!
9. Where do you like to find creative inspiration?
I spend a lot of time scrolling through instagram (surprise, surprise!) to see what other brands are up to. I also follow digital design artists and branding agencies, and of course subscribe to Design Milk. Time to time, I’ll seek creative inspiration from visiting galleries, dance performances, and even buzzy restaurants like Gerties.
10. What brands have you been inspired by recently?
11. As many creative millennials do, I’ve heard you also have a side hustle… tell me about it!
I’m the co-creator of She’s Not Sorry, an online community that gives females and femmes the space to share personal #notsorry stories. "Sorry" is a word we find ourselves using too often, even when it's not necessary. We’re building a foundation to defend our place and space in the workforce and throughout our lives. This idea of "sorry" goes beyond the word itself. We recognized the need for a space that allows us to share our #sorrynotsorry stories, question the "appropriate" female mannerisms, and support one another.
Thanks Alex for sharing more about Splendid Spoon’s recent rebranding! For startups looking to build their brand identity or refresh their current branding remember to take your time, ensure every change you are making is for a good reason and to have fun while doing it!