The world moves fast. For 43 years, Karsh Hagan has enabled brands to move with it. In the early 2000s when consumers increasingly digested their information digitally, we helped clients execute digital marketing campaigns of their own. As consumers have continued to demand social purpose from the brands they support, we’ve helped clients transcend the things they make or do by unlocking an authentic purpose of their own.
We even helped steer brands onward amid a global pandemic. In March of 2020, as marketing budgets were slashed and campaigns were canceled across the entire industry, brands were forced to reevaluate what to say and how. We used what limited resources we had to quickly produce campaigns for our clients that put messages of empathy, care, and support at the forefront — messages that our communities needed more than ever.
Simply put, we know how to think on our feet. We have a passion for empowering brands to grow and helping them pivot in whatever direction the wind is blowing. This was no exception for Panacea Life Sciences, a CBD company based in Golden, Colorado.
CBD and a Sea of Sameness
Our relationship with Panacea Life Sciences began in 2019 when we invited them to our office (pre-pandemic) for a brand accelerator workshop. It was during this time that we uncovered two of their biggest barriers to success. First, they had no distinguishable brand of their own. Second, the CBD industry itself. While it’s no secret that CBD consumption has skyrocketed in recent years, it’s a complicated category blanketed in questions, stigma, and a myriad of brands all singing the same song.
“Will this get me high?”
“Aren’t over-the-counter pills more effective?”
“I can’t tell the difference between any of these brands.”
“Are these health claims even accurate?”
To be seen as a leader, Panacea Life Sciences would need a rebranding that pivoted them in a different direction than their competitors — a rebranding that would provide answers, challenge stereotypes, and help them stand out.
We began by helping them articulate what value they add to people’s lives. For brands to thrive, they need to bring something of value to the table. It’s why we might choose to spend more dollars on one brand of jelly versus the other. Panacea Life Sciences in particular carries the unique equities of nature and science — 100% organically-grown hemp, and the research/expertise of on-staff Ph.D. scientists. This marriage results in premium, quality products for treating pain, anxiety, insomnia, and more. It fosters empowerment through natural remedies that serve as an alternative to daily wellness products. We took these values and helped the brand express them through a three-word brand essence: Cultivating Everyday Wellness.
With a brand essence this refreshing, it was time to develop an identity that followed suit. We crafted a simplified and elegant name for the brand — “Pana”, along with a new goddess logomark inspired by Panacea, the Greek goddess of healing. We also implemented new colors and graphic lines and patterns to provide a sophisticated, apothecary-esque feel to complement the brand’s natural remedies. To differentiate their product lines, we brought in a hand-drawn illustration style, each illustration depicting the product line they represent.
After establishing their look, it was time to refine their voice. One thing we know is that people don’t want to hear from brands; they want to hear from people. That’s why we also helped develop a new tone of voice that’s trustworthy, educated, scientific, passionate, and most of all human-sounding.
With this rebranding, we even challenged the popular cultural stereotype that anyone beaming with delight from hemp-based wellness products must be high on pot. To break this myth for good, we created a social campaign that shows everyday people experiencing the holistic effects of Pana, all with a smiley, borderline-stoned expression on their faces. The twist? They’re not high; they’re just thrilled to be in less pain.
More and More, Brand Matters
A rebranding of this magnitude didn’t come without results. As of August 2020, the engagement rate on Facebook, Instagram, and LinkedIn each rose 56%. But the rebranding didn’t come without a deeper reason, either. Ask yourself how many brand messages and advertisements you see per day. Hundreds? Thousands? Now ask yourself how many you remember. Less than ten? Brand matters. To stand out among the masses, it’s critical to have a distinct voice, a recognizable style, an attractive personality, and the ability to pivot when circumstances demand it. With more and more advertisements being churned out by the hour, what your brand says, does, and delivers becomes more and more important.