Purina Pet Gear Brand Positioning and Stewardship


Reaching new consumer segments by developing new brands.

It’s no secret that people are crazy about their pets. But did you know that during the Great Recession spending on pet pampering actually increased? That’s real consumer devotion – and it’s also the type of trend that, once spotted and thoroughly understood, can fuel brand success.

Our challenge: Reach a completely new audience for an established brand.

Purina has defined pet nutrition for decades. This traditional strength posed a challenge when Purina decided to expand its brand portfolio to reach a more contemporary consumer. How could they introduce a distinctive new sub-brand, built on the trust and goodwill of the parent while also modernizing the overall brand, and expanding its relevance to new consumers?

Our solution: Give voice to the pet inside the consumer’s head

We started from the premise that people think of their pets as people (a positive thing according to an article in Psychology Today with states that “thinking about the behaviors of dogs in the same way that we think about the behaviors of young humans can help us to understand” our pets). Then we conducted trend research to translate colors, textures, surface treatments and other key creators of product affinity and preference. Finally we combined our consumer perspective with the trend research – and, of course, our extensive experience in package and graphic design – to help create a uniquely engaging line of pet accessories, from toys to food bowls, leashes to beds, that incorporated a quirky and fun visual and verbal style. We even let the end users “speak for themselves,” putting all marketing copy in first-person dog and cat.

The result?

A compelling new brand extension for a traditional brand that delights a contemporary consumer and engages them in entirely new ways.