Unboxing big personalities: modern brands embrace authenticity

Let's dig into why having a big personality was a home run for these legends.

Unboxing Big Personalities - A blog title with Fatso Nut Butter photography

Standing out in a crowded marketplace can feel pretty daunting. While the following brands likely have hefty marketing budgets, we like to think that their authenticity and charisma made them noteworthy in their early days. Let's dig into why having a big personality was a home run for Headspace, Fatso, Dollar Shave Club, and Patagonia.

Headspace: Zen Done Differently

In a world that's constantly buzzing with noise and distraction, Headspace stands out with bold and distinctive illustrations, a saturated colour palette, and non-traditional type. With their soothing animations and guided meditation sessions, this brand isn't just selling mindfulness; they're selling a way of life where meditation is accessible and friendly. Headspace has taken the ancient practice of mindfulness and made it accessible to the masses. We're big fans of their positioning! They took risks with their identity, and it paid off big time. It would have been all too easy to slap together a neutral-toned palette and a skinny italicized serif wordmark, but they rejected the urge to fit in.

Fastso: Where Bold Meets Butter

"The Way Better Nut Butter" - Fatso is a mission-forward company with big (fat?) type-based label design. Far from its green and neutral-toned competitors, this brand has a design wildly differentiated in its category, and its quirky wordplay takes everything one step further. This is all steeped in their mission - to provide more nutritious options at a lower cost or competitive price with high-priced specialty nut butters. They've stayed mission-focused and cut out all of the fluff. They've remained factual, focused, and friendly in a market that tries to sell a healthy lifestyle. We're (insert a word that starts with "f") fans. Ok, enough farting around. NEXT:

Dollar Shave Club: Verging on Anti-Branding

Ah, here's a brand that knows how to shave off the competition (seriously, I need to cut myself off). Dollar Shave Club burst onto the scene with a simple proposition: quality razors at an affordable price. But what sets them apart isn't just their products; their irreverent attitude and razor-sharp wit. From their cheeky commercials to their no-nonsense packaging, Dollar Shave Club enables consumers to go against the grain (ok, last one). We all know how wild the markup is on drugstore razors–especially if you're buying razors marketed for women (hello, PINK TAX). In an effort to educate folks on the industry and pull back the curtain, Dollar Shave Club launched a remarkably transparent video campaign. They've managed to turn the mundane task of shaving into a which-brand-do-I-stand-behind conversation, and in an age where everyone is tired of being sold to, this is a smart move. Is their Visual ID the sexiest I've ever seen? Not even close. I would LOVE to get our hands on that brand 10+ years ago pre-launch, but their stripped-down approach has resulted in a beautifully simple and candid brand.

Patagonia: More Than Eco-Warriors

Last but certainly not least, we have Patagonia, a brand with a conscience that has resonated globally. In a world where environmental awareness is more important than ever, Patagonia has positioned itself as a leader in the fight for a sustainable future. Far from preaching from their soapbox, they're leading by example. From their commitment to ethical manufacturing practices to their outspoken advocacy for environmental causes, Patagonia isn't just selling outdoor gear; they're paving the way to look at wearables and consumerism differently. And it's not just at a company level. I'm sure you've all heard of the Founder transferring his entire ownership to two non-profits fighting climate change. In an age where companies are clamoring for consumer attention, this level of commitment to their cause feels so far beyond their competitors that they'll likely never catch up. The best part? It doesn't feel like this move was motivated by that (whether or not that's true feels irrelevant, doesn't it?). From the Founder: "Instead of extracting value from nature and transforming it into wealth, we are using the wealth Patagonia creates to protect the source. We're making Earth our only shareholder," Chouinard, 83. Oof. 🙏

So there you have it, folks: a glimpse into the vibrant world of brands with big personalities. Whether they're helping you find your zen, speeding up your day, smoothing out your shave, or producing wearables differently, these brands are more than just products; they're personalities that leave a lasting impression. And in a world where standing out is the name of the game, that's a trait worth celebrating.


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