Growing healthy smiles.

Grin / Grin Kids Natural Toothpaste

Brand Strategy and New Product Development

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As with all other toothpaste – it’s a category dominated by the big guys. To launch Grin in the first place, DNA undertook a research, prototyping and design phase – from which we then tested scenarios with consumers. 

The new Strawberry and Orange gel variants developed are packed full of flavour - and goodness for healthy growing teeth. However, while the adults brand had been doing well, an 100% Natural toothpaste for kids was a new proposition. The task was to deliver via packs primarily – a fun brand that looked like a completely safe and fresh option in the oral health category.

The Challenge

For the new range, DNA set about adding a fun, friendly and distinct character for the Grin Kids brand that would partner the adult brand, and compete well against other kids toothpaste products. In the toothpaste are Manuka oil (to maintain freshness), Propolis (an antibacterial agent) and Organic Sea Salt (a natural abrasive). It’s healthy so parents will want to choose it, but it’s also fun - kids need to love it.

Keep it Simple – As with the initial range, Grin kids toothpaste leaves out the nasty bits (like no Sodium Lauryl Sulfate, Fluoride, artificial colours, harsh abrasives or preservatives) and only put good things in (the formula contains organic sea salt, Manuka oil and Propolis).

Flavour Driven – Strawberry and Orange gel are the full on flavours at launch.

Comes with Monsters – Well, colour and monsters. Each pack is colour coded to stand out on the shelf, and each introduces a fun and friendly character – Tarquin the tiger and Dolores the dinosaur.

The Solution

Grin 100% Natural Toothpaste.
With a growing natural consumer goods sector in New Zealand, Grin came to DNA with a natural toothpaste needing a brand and identity that would connect with their customers.

The brand would begin in the New Zealand market and eventually be launched in the Chinese market. 

›  Informed by insight: Customer empathy/testing tuned value proposition, unique offer and brand

›  Proof of concept: Multiple designs to test with customers and their needs

›  Differentiation: Creating an edgy, vibrant brand/packaging amidst the existing ‘stale and cliche’ product line-up on store shelves

›  Product presentation: Visually assuring customers of its use of natural ingredients without looking homeopathic or like a gran’s remedy.


›  Performed customer interviews

›  Developed name, brand story and brand framework and supporting visual elements

›  Developed packaging for four SKUs, two in the adult’s range and two in the children’s range

›  Stand out offering in channel – delivered 4 weeks from the Kickstarter Workshop to packaging print production

›  Becoming a key player in the natural dental market — making noticeable impact on competing brands
› Distribution in over 100 supermarkets and health stores nationwide within the the first 5 months after launch.

The Result

We have successfully turned perceptions of what a natural toothpaste is, and delivered a brand case in New Zealand before the business launched in a range of global markets. 

Just because it’s natural didn’t stop us challenging convention – just because it’s toothpaste didn’t mean we couldn’t be lighthearted – the brand has proven to be engaging for adults and children alike.

Both Grin and Grin Kids are growing through an ever increasing network of health, specialty and now major supermarket outlets nationwide.

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