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Brief

How do we take a chocolate company born out of a desire to quit sugar but keep chocolate, to a thought leader pioneering the future of treats?

Opportunity

Better-for-you foods promising the same great taste without the guilt have flooded the market in almost every category of the grocery store. They’re often focused on checking the boxes of the trendiest new claims or fad diets. And those brands that do move beyond the functional characteristics, are selling health and wellness with a pretentious tone.

Solution

With the ultimate goal of world domination (sans sugar), and an accessible brand at the core, I looked to a category ripe for reinvention to expand how our consumers thought about Lily’s. A line of uniquely Lily’s baking mixes carries the brand to the next level and reinvigorates a stale category.


Part 1: understanding the brand opportunity

Lily’s fans are opting for their chocolate because of concern about their diet. Whether they are following a specific diet for health or moral reasons, it’s something that restricts what they’re eating every day. And they aren’t the only ones. 75% of U.S. adults are trying to decrease or maintain their weight.

People recognize that restricting what you’re eating has more than just physical affects. 47% say what they eat impacts their emotional well-being, and 60% define a healthy lifestyle as feeling emotionally stable. They’re constantly fighting to make the “right” choice, which is often at odds with what they want.

 

“Attempting to maintain weight through continual food deprivation can lead to a constant state of anxiety.”

- G. Terence Wilson & Paul Susic, Psychologists

CONSUMER TRUTH

They’re looking for wholesome foods that
help them live the life they want.

CATEGORY TRUTH

Many healthier brands speak about health & wellness in a way that feels pretentious.

BRAND TRUTH

Lily’s doesn’t just alleviate guilt.
It makes you feel good.

Strategy

Build an accessible world of guiltless enjoyment.


Part 2: New Category Opportunity

Guided by the strategy, I developed a roadmap to expand our perception beyond a chocolate company.

Rules for New Category
1) Deliver on premium
2) Offer rich & innovative flavors
3) Make people smile

Lily’s & Baking

With accessibility and guiltless enjoyment in mind, I asked Lily’s fans what they would want Lily’s to create next. Category audits in tandem with their suggestions led me to the baking mix aisle.

Baking Category Audit Takeaway

People come to the baking aisle for indulgent treats, but the traditional category offerings fail to appeal to modern consumer lifestyles.

New Category Recommendation

Sales of baking ingredients are on the rise - consumers are looking to control what they’re eating and they’re baking from scratch to accomplish that. The baking mix segment needs a refresh. We need products that are made of natural ingredients and low in sugar, that recognize changing consumer diets (and household sizes), and still deliver on an enjoyable, indulgent treats (which is what having a brownie or a slice of fresh baked cake is all about). And Lily’s is the brand to do it. Introducing, Lily’s line of no added sugar baking mixes.

Resealable gusseted bags allow baking mix to stay fresh once opened, with a bonus on maximizing pantry space. Suggestions for swapping apple sauce for eggs, and bananas for milk help tailor ingredients for various diets. Customizable servings allow for making just the right amount of brownies, whatever the household size.

Resealable gusseted bags allow baking mix to stay fresh once opened, with a bonus on maximizing pantry space. Suggestions for swapping apple sauce for eggs, and bananas for milk help tailor ingredients for various diets. Customizable servings allow for making just the right amount of brownies, whatever the household size.

Inspired by Lily’s innovative chocolate flavors, exciting twists on old classic flavors refresh the category as Lily’s flagship skus.

Inspired by Lily’s innovative chocolate flavors, exciting twists on old classic flavors refresh the category as Lily’s flagship skus.

How it changes Lily’s

From a chocolate brand to a treats brand.

From focus on perfection to focus on attainable - because life is messy.

From competing on features to pioneering category thought leadership.

Final Thoughts

With a curriculum so based in group work, this project gave me an opportunity to show what I can do. It also made me value even more the people who gave me their time to be a sounding board when they weren’t assigned to my team. Solo success is cool, but it’s even sweeter when you can share it.
Packaging consulting + mockups by the lovely and talented Missy Thieman (Experience Designer).