Are you an aspiring wellness entrepreneur? Maybe you’ve seen projections that the wellness industry will continue to grow, or maybe you want to make a positive impact on the lives of your clients and customers (while also making a profit!). Or maybe you’re simply ready to branch off and be your own boss.
No matter what first attracted you to the industry, here are some tips to help you start a thriving wellness brand, attract customers, and make your first sales!
Set Up the Basics
First things first: what is your wellness business selling? Will it be an online business, or do you want a brick-and mortar location? This part is fun, and you can break your strategy into two parts:
1. Short Term Goals
What needs to happen in your first year of business? What is your business going to look like in the short term? Be willing to start small and grow from there if possible.
Maybe you start selling products at farmers markets to build brand awareness at first, or maybe you rent space in a chiropractor’s office to offer your wellness services before signing your own lease. Be realistic about how you can get your business off the ground in the short-term to start getting your first clients and getting your name out there.
We have a quick quiz that will help you come up with branding ideas for your business based on your unique brand personality:
2. Long Term Goals
What do you want your business to look like five years from now? What’s your big dreamy entrepreneurial goal?
Do you want your skincare products to be on the shelves of CVS or available exclusively through your website? Do you dream of running a local tea café where customers can meet in person, or do you prefer the idea of selling your tea wholesale to restaurants and offices? By having an idea of these details now, you can aim your business in the right direction from the beginning.
Additionally, you should speak to a CPA or business attorney about the best way to structure your business (as a sole proprietorship, LLC, or other business structure). Depending on what products or services you are selling, you will want to be aware of any tax, insurance, or legal considerations.
Establish Your Brand Purpose
No matter what products or services your business sells, you won’t be the only player on the scene! To stand out from the competition, you need to get clear on the brand purpose of your wellness business.
Your brand purpose is simply the “why” behind your business. Why does your business exist? Why did you create these healthy snack products when other snacks are already out there? Why should someone choose your eye cream over another skincare company’s eye cream?
Your brand purpose statement should be created with a focus on your audience – not about your personal goals. For example, “I started this tea business so I could leave my corporate 9-5 that I hated” isn’t a solid brand purpose. While that might be inspiring to you, your ideal clients won’t be impressed. They will want to know what the benefit is to them, not you.
However, a brand purpose of “I wanted to create an innovative tea brand that blends ancient traditions with modern flavors” would spark their interest and make them curious about your products. By setting your brand purpose at the beginning, you can make strategic decisions that keep your purpose front and center along the way.
Identify Your Ideal Client
To be successful, every health and wellness business needs to have a specific ideal client in mind. If you try to target your marketing to everyone, you will end up targeting no one.
Maybe your business sells incredible coffee, so technically anyone could buy it, drink it, and enjoy it. But when you’re crafting a social media advertisement, creating a blog post, or printing promotional flyers about your coffee, your marketing will be much more effective if you create it with one specific person in mind.
What would your coffee branding look like if you targeted stressed-out moms in their 30s who cherish their morning coffee as a moment of “me time” before their chaotic day begins? You might use relaxing images, curved lines, and muted pastel colors to signal that message to your customers.
On the other hand, what would your branding look like if you targeted college students who wanted a strong and energetic coffee to help them stay up and study through the night? You could use images like lightning bolts, sharp lines and fonts, and bright colors to catch the attention of your target.
These two coffee brands would use vastly different colors, shapes, fonts, images, and packaging designs to attract their target shopper – even if they were selling the exact same coffee inside each bag. Many wellness businesses struggle with identifying their ideal client, which is why we created this Ideal Client Blueprint!
Conduct Competitor Research
No matter what product or service your wellness business sells, you will have some competitors. Rather than ignoring them, you can research them and identify the gaps in their branding so you can stand out.
Start by looking at competitors in your immediate city or state. Note that if a business has been around for a long time and is seen as an industry leader, they are not considered your competitor!
Someday as you grow you will get to a point where you can compete with large companies, but for now focus on brands that were launched around the same time as yours or 1-3 years ahead of yours. Our brand score quiz will help you figure out the next right steps to stand out from the competition:
Do your competitors use social media? Do they offer coupon codes? Do they run TV commercials or Facebook ads? What are they doing to get their businesses in front of potential customers? These strategies provide clues into what tactics you might want to try.
Pay attention as well to what your competitors are not doing. If they don’t have a strong Instagram presence, Instagram could be a great platform to master so you can set your wellness business apart from them.
If you’re interested in performing a competitive analysis, I walk you step-by-step through how to identify your competitors, analyze their brands, and find the strengths and gaps where your business can stand out from the crowd in the Brand Clarity online course.
Identify Your Brand Attributes
Your brand attributes are the personality traits of your wellness brand, and they will be expressed primarily through your visual designs.
It’s important to develop your brand attributes before your designer creates your logo, colors, website, and visual brand. If your brand attributes aren’t clear, how can a designer truly create a brand that attracts your target, reflects your uniqueness, and stands out from your industry competitors?
Many health and wellnesses end up rebranding after a few years in business because their original designs don’t match their brand attributes. By working with a branding agency to establish your brand attributes first, you can save the time associated with rebranding later.
Is your brand feminine, optimistic, rugged, natural, innovative, or something else? By selecting 4-5 personality traits to describe your business, you can maintain brand consistency and create a memorable first impression with your customers.
Come Up with a Business Name
Depending on the business owner, this step can come earlier or later in the process. Some wellness entrepreneurs come up with their business name first, while others finalize their brand strategy first to ensure their name attracts their target.
Your business name needs to be memorable to your customers, and ideally it will be easy to spell so they can type it into Google and find you. One option is to start small and change the name of your business once you grow.
For example, maybe you dream of opening your own yoga studio, but in the meantime you need to build your clientele as a yoga instructor. In that case, you could start by using the business name “Yoga with Michelle.”
Then a few years later when you have the client base and are ready to launch your studio, you could rebrand into a name that sounds more like a studio and less like an individual teacher. The drawback to this approach is that you will need to go through rebranding once your business gets to that next level. For branding inspiration, we created this curated resource of 20+ logo designs to help you:
The brand colors, logo, fonts, and visual designs for your business are the first thing your target customers will see. Their entire first impression of your business will come from their emotional reaction to your visual designs, no matter how amazing your captions or written content may be.
If you want to look like a professional and trustworthy brand, you should work with a graphic designer or branding agency to create these crucial designs. Your brand colors will depend on the brand attributes you chose for your business, and your logo needs to mirror your brand attributes while staying simple and memorable.
Fonts are often overlooked by entrepreneurs, but the fonts you choose need to be both readable and reflective of your brand’s personality. You will also use styled imagery and stock photos throughout your website and social media pages, and those should capture the interest of your target while aligning with the look and feel of your brand.
Aventive Studio helps health and wellness businesses create memorable brands and visual designs that attract more customers. You can see some of our past client work here.
Get the Word Out
There are too many potential marketing strategies to cover them all in a single blog post! However, once your business is up and running you will need to continuously get the word out through marketing and advertising.
For most wellness businesses, a mix of online and offline approaches works best. For example, you could build an Instagram presence to reach ideal clients online and also offer product samples at a local health fair to build in-person relationships.
The ultimate thing to remember is that as a health and wellness brand, your customers have to trust you. They need to feel confident that your products or services will deliver the results they are seeking, so it’s wise to include customer testimonials or before-and-after pictures in your marketing.
Building brand awareness for your wellness business will take time – it’s not something that happens overnight. Keep showing up, keep finding creative ways to get your brand and message in front of your ideal client, and as you gain momentum you will see more growth over time.
Of course, there are hundreds of details to consider and steps to take when starting a wellness business. But by focusing on the strategies above, you will put your business on track to stand out from the competition, attract your ideal customers, and make an unforgettable first impression.
Aventive Studio is a health and wellness branding agency that helps entrepreneurs develop custom brand strategies and visual brand identities including packaging, website design, logo design, strategic brand positioning, and more.
We provide the skills, strategy, and support that will grow your healthy snack business and make more sales by creating a timeless and memorable brand. You can learn more about our signature brand strategy process here or contact us to discuss your branding or rebranding ideas with the Aventive Studio team.