There was a time when the terms “sleek modern branding” and “vitamin and mineral supplements” wouldn’t be seen in the same sentence. But times change, and every now and then products come along that disrupt the status quo. Neuriva may be one such product, though you may never have heard of it.

Neuriva is a brain performance supplement brand recently launched in the USA. Their approach to presenting their product appears to be twofold: combining scientifically-backed ingredients with approachable branding. Now we don’t know much about the former, but we can talk a little bit about the latter. 

One thing that certainly seems true of the vitamin and mineral supplements (VMS) industry is that, on the whole, the products coming out of it aren’t the most aesthetically pleasing in terms of branding and packaging. 

For the most part, VMS products tend to suffer from a combination of scientific overload and bland presentation. And the likelihood is that these two factors feed off each other. After all, it’s easy to imagine how a company could rest on their laurels when they believe the science behind their product speaks for (and sells) itself. The problem is that often it doesn’t.  

Head into any pharmacist or health food store and you’ll see firsthand the standard on offer. Plain bottles, generic typefaces, and an overall lack of colour, illustrations, or iconography.

This is where Neuriva seems to really stand out. In developing a vibrant brand they’ve completely differentiated themselves from most of their competitors. Opting to focus not only on the scientific aspect of their product, but also its real world, day-to-day, application. 

This is made clear immediately by the bottle illustration, which is divided between an image of a brain and a series of illustrations depicting common daily activities such as running, reading, and working on a computer. 

Mark Derose, Design Director at Design Bridge New York, said, “The bold yet charming illustration style clearly communicates the benefits of the supplement while building an emotional connection with consumers.”

The concept of forging an “emotional connection” between brand and consumer seems largely absent from the wider VMS market. Perhaps it’s got something to do with how closely related it is to the pharmaceutical industry, where impersonal branding is standard practise. It could be that the sense of “consumer need” present in such an industry (the fact that many people don’t have a choice in what medicines they take) has stripped away the perceived importance of personal, customer-friendly, branding in contributing towards product sales. It’s easy to see how that sort of mindset could spill over into similar, related industries.

But whatever the case, Neuriva stands as something of a breath of fresh air. Importantly, it has a story. It makes no assumptions. It doesn’t see itself as above the consumer or hide behind a wall of science. Instead it shows that it has a personality, which is becoming an increasingly important  factor in modern branding. 

As consumers we’re no longer so easily sucked in by shallow sales techniques, glossy advertisements, or lacklustre branding. If no effort or intellect goes into the design, it betrays a deeper lack of interest in the value and opinions of a brand’s target market.  

Neuriva, by the simple act of designing a breathable, colourful, and personal brand, has bridged a wide and long-existing gap between the market in which it operates and its consumers. And, with any luck, more businesses in this sector will begin to follow suit.

For more branding posts, check out our case studies on Carlsberg and Oatly.