Founder Kendrick Smith, Pharm.D., is an absolute gem. He runs a pharmacy in Knoxville, Tennessee, and as a pharmacist, Kendrick understands how substances and bodies interact.
As a believer in holistic wellness, Kendrick has also explored beyond pharmaceuticals and custom compounding. He straddles the fence between the two worlds of conventional and alternative medicine.
In late 2018, after upgrading to a new point-of-sale system, Kendrick noticed how many prescriptions his team was filling for names like “Hercules” and “Miss Thang.” That got Kendrick to thinking.
What if he could bring together the best of both worlds, pharmaceutical and homeopathic? What if he could offer dogs (and their humans) much-needed alternatives to expensive prescriptions?
A bigger vision for his work and impact began to take shape, but Kendrick had no idea how to bring it—whatever “it” needed to be—into the world.
We had the privilege of joining the Breedwise team before the furbaby even had a name. Our challenge? To launch a pet wellness brand. What followed was an adventure with many twists and turns.
Team Balernum sat in on several visioning sessions. We then facilitated a naming workshop for Kendrick and his team. Their initial ideas were the starter dough for a new batch.
We later presented our top five picks, along with the story and rationale for each. Kendrick chose Breedwise.
From there, we dove into brand strategy, knowing that the new brand’s raison d’etre would help us to define everything from visual and verbal identity to packaging and web presence.
Fundamentally, Breedwise is a caregiving and preparedness company. Kendrick’s family cannot imagine life without their Goldendoodle Rosie, and yet doing life with their furball brings a whole host of challenges. Many dog owners feel uninformed and ill-equipped, and Kendrick would like to see that change.
But which problem should Breedwise solve first?
Balernum brought on BT Design Lab to design and implement a human-centered design project focused on dog lovers in our target audience. Primary and secondary research and the resulting insights brought clarity and confidence as we moved forward with the first Breedwise product, Calming Bites.
With the brand strategy in hand, we then assisted with the block-and-tackle work of identifying manufacturers, vetting product prototypes, developing beautiful and functional packaging, and ordering half a ton of Calming Bites.
Meanwhile, we designed and customized a gorgeous Shopify site and began rolling out go-to-market strategy.
These days, no direct-to-consumer brand is complete without a thoughtful Instagram presence (backed by smart strategy and planning), email marketing peppered with the perfect amount of personality and humor, and a clear, strong brand voice to communicate why people should care in the first place.
Breedwise isn’t perfect, but it’s doggone close! Anxious and high-energy pups got a special stocking stuffer at Christmas in 2019, and the second Breedwise product is already in the works.
The Instagram audience is growing at a rate of around 50 new, high-quality followers a day, and the Calming Bites are selling.
It was an honor to come alongside Kendrick, to put flesh (er, fur?) on his vision, and to help him avoid the biggest branding mistakes. The fact is, dogs help their humans lead richer, healthier lives. When our best friends thrive, we do too.
We’re excited to witness the compound effect of all the branding, strategy, execution, and heart we invested. Long live Breedwise!