Leigh Richards, Marketing Director & Brand Manager for startup beverage company, NOOMA, came in last week to talk about business, specifically marketing. As a marketing major and recent business graduate of Ohio State’s Fisher College of Business (OH!), she had a lot of wisdom and on-the-job experience to share with our students. She used the business model for her company and her knowledge from OSU to teach the students about all things marketing.
Leigh started off telling us about the company and #startuplife. NOOMA was founded in Cleveland and up to this point, managed by a team of four. They all wear a lot of hats and work a lot of hours, although it doesn’t feel like work! They are all truly passionate about the brand & spreading NOOMA life around Ohio.
She then dove into the good stuff; Marketing.
- Nooma targets 25-40 year olds living a FIT lifestyle; yogis, runners, cross-fitters
- Logo design – infinity, got trademarked
- Product must be innovative! Beverage industry is very competitive and has a very low survival rate beyond the first year. NOOMA is low calorie, low sugar, has a complete electrolyte mix and is the first non-acidic pH balanced sports drink. It is non acidic and has no preservatives, GMOs, is gluten free and vegan friendly. Worked with a nutritionist from Cleveland Clinic.
- Also discussed packaging and prototype(s)
- Touched upon the cost, wholesale and retail prices of the current and future products
- Currently sold mostly in Cleveland, beginning to penetrate the Columbus market
- Grassroots & community marketing – getting involved in the community, yoga & running events, etc
- Digital marketing is gold for a startup! Its free, drives engagement, lots of fun!
- Uses Instagram a lot ~ @drinknooma & #noomalife, does contests
- Uses ad manager (dark posts) on Facebook – budgets $10 a day
- Uses Hootsuite for managing her schedule & posts
- Spent money on a good website – discussed ‘scroll through’ concept & design