Kids are an attractive target audience for nutritional supplements. Theoretically, kids that eat healthy and diverse don’t require dietary supplements. However, in reality, plenty of kids are “picky” eaters, only stick to what they are familiar with and stay away from anything green.
Children are still a niche market when it comes to any food and drink products, which includes supplements and vitamins. While the kids themselves have some influence on their nutrition, it is their parents who make the final decisions and pay the bills.
Remember the Real Target Audience
When marketing nutritional supplements for kids, it’s important to remember you are marketing to their parents. Not many kids will ask their parents to take supplements. However, many parents are concerned their children aren’t eating well enough and might be missing essential supplements that they need to grow strong and healthy.
The U.S. market is one of the most receptive when it comes to dietary supplements for children. American consumers are knowledgeable about filling perceived gaps in their own diets and their family’s diets. If mom and dad take a daily supplement, they will likely be open to adding the same to their child’s routine. This has ensured a strong role for supplementation in children’s diets, with a particular focus on general health, immunity, physical growth and development, as well as cognitive development.
Marketing Elements to Consider
Let’s take a look at some characteristics of nutritional supplements targeting kids and accompanying examples.
- The brand package: Supplements for kids need to make an effort to be appealing for children. Brands should make an effort to use positive attributes on the packaging to make the supplements attractive. Llama Naturals is a good example. Their brand is colorful, illustrated, and uses a llama as a likable character that kids can love. High chances that a kid who sees this supplement bottle will like what he sees.
- The form: Parents tend to focus on the range of ingredients and their health claims, plus added benefits such as sugar-free and GMO-free. Meanwhile, we know that children are increasingly focusing on what form their nutritional supplements take. Drinkable and chewable options, enhanced with child-friendly flavors & colors are a perennial hit. The most popular form trending in the market for kids (but not only) is gummies. Gummies are the obvious choice for kids who have trouble swallowing actual pills and come in sweet tastes children enjoy. For infants and babies, liquids make even more sense. SmartyPants Vitamins are famous for their kid’s gummies formulas, and were recently acquired by Unilever. Founded in 2011 by parents and leaders in health & wellness, SmartyPants’ mission is to simplify health without compromising quality.
- Transparency and natural ingredients: The use of indulgent flavours and formulas should be balanced with authentic ingredients and listed benefits. The brand “first day” is proud of their “Nothing but the good stuff” ingredient policy. Flavored by nature, no artificial dyes, and made of organic fruits and vegetables – exactly what a parent will be looking for their child.
- Certifications: Important for all supplement brands; certifications are essential for kids’ supplements because parents are protective of their little ones and don’t want any unsafe products to harm their children. The Vitamin Friends brand, share all their certificates in a dedicated web page. They share their credentials for 100% allergen-free, GMP Good Manufacturing Practice; the British Retail Consortium (BRC) is the leading trade association for retail in the United Kingdom. Although the BRC food safety standard began in the UK, it is a global standard and includes Vegan and Kosher certificates.
Vitamin Friends was born out of a mother and father in distress. Their son lacked essential nutrients and went through numerous dental issues due to the low-quality gummy vitamins available, and there was no solution. A high-quality, highly certified, safe, and effective gummy was absent from the market, and Vitamin Friends was happy to take on that status.
Similar but Different
As you can see promoting supplements for kids incorporates some of the same learnings from the food and beverage categories, but with a few twists. Authenticity, natural ingredients, honesty and transparency go a long way in turning a child’s parents into repeat customers.