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When, how and why to refresh your brand

united19 brand panel
From left: Nadine Williams of Shenandoah Growers, CarrieAnn Arias of Naturipe Farms, Falon Brawley of Onions 52 and Amy Kull of Marin Restorative talk about brand refreshes at United Fresh in Chicago.

CHICAGO—If you’re spending more time explaining who you are than what you do, you might need a brand refresh.

If you’re bringing together six different entities under one sales strategy, you might need a brand refresh.

If you’re building on 100+ years of history but need a fresh new look for an increasingly competitive category, you might need a brand refresh.

The marketing voices behind three prominent fresh produce brands shared their journey to a better connection with trade customers, and end consumers, through branding at the United Fresh Produce Association Convention on June 10.

Falon Brawley, Director of Marketing and Business Development for Onions 52 BB #:104705, previously called Utah Onions, said the Syracuse, UT-based company had simply outgrown its name. While the change seems simple now, the company went through hundreds of possibilities, she said.

You have to take your own opinion out of the process, she said.

“It’s not ‘do I like it?’” she said. “The question is ‘does it feel right for our brand?’”

For Naturipe Farms LLC BB #:116078, Salinas, CA, the question of feeling right for the brand was particularly important, with the company’s legacy and wide range of grower partners, said CarrieAnn Arias, Vice President of Marketing.

Arias found, however, that most growers were supportive of the change.

“It wasn’t as hard of a sell as we thought it would be,” she said.

Getting growers behind the change was important, though.

“They’re our marketing campaign, too,” she said. “You want them to be ambassadors for the brand.”

At Shenandoah Growers BB #:187801, Harrisonburg, VA, the new brand had to reflect a new market positioning, said Nadine Williams, Director of Marketing.

Fresh herbs were at a turning point in attracting new customers.

“We were known for the commodity,” she said. “We’re doing some really cool things on indoor growing and the future of food. We’re more than just the commodity itself, and we learned that none of our current brands conveyed that message.”

The company’s new “That’s Tasty” brand went through a few versions before it was finalized.

“We really wanted our message to be the brand against bland,” she said. “We weren’t going to be the usual.”

So far, it’s working for Shenandoah Growers, Williams said. The company has been pleased with sales and shelf position since the new branding has entered the marketplace.

“Yes, we have seen a dramatic increase in sales,” she said.

Going through the process of developing That’s Tasty also gave the company the platform, and the consumer insights, to go after new areas of business as well.

Pamela Riemenschneider is Retail Editor for Blue Book Services