DDD Bringing New Life To UK’s Baby-Care Category
DDD Ltd's global marketing director Katy Holder tells HBW Insight how the company is looking to carve out a niche in the UK's baby-care market with naturally derived ingredients and family-friendly product portfolios.
Family owned UK OTC company DDD Ltd is tapping into a trend for naturals to re-energise the UK’s baby health category and breathe new life into its long-standing baby brands.
Speaking exclusively to HBW Insight, DDD revealed that it had recently launched two Dentinox line extensions, Dentinox Baby Scalp Oil and Dentinox Eye Wipes, as well as a Vapour Bath Bubbles addition to its baby decongestant brand Snufflebabe.
Using a blend of botanicals and vitamins – rosehip oil, chamomile and vitamin E – DDD said that Dentinox Cosmetic Baby Scalp Oil was an example of the company’s research-driven product development strategy.
“Baby health is a key focus for us at DDD and understanding parent needs and market trends is essential,” the company explained. “That’s why our insights team work with parents and trends specialists, listening to their views, opinions and what parents are crying out for.”
“Our product development within the baby category is then born out of this research thinking to develop the very latest baby care innovation and solutions,” DDD added.
This research was leveraged in developing Dentinox Eye Wipes, the company said, which are hypoallergenic, pH balanced and enriched with chamomile extract, as well as with Snufflebabe Vapour Bath Bubbles, which uses eucalyptus, camphor, thyme and menthol to both relax and decongest babies before bed.
On A Journey
Driving this research-driven strategy was a desire to move the baby-care category away from a focus on “distress purchases,” DDD’s global marketing director Katy Holder told HBW Insight.
Especially in the first six months, new parents were often driven to pharmacy or the supermarket Health & Beauty aisle by a baby’s acute distress, she observed. In these circumstances, parents wanted brands they knew and could trust.
Almost half a century old, Dentinox remained one of the UK’s most trusted baby-care brands, Holder said. Nevertheless, DDD had been taking the brand on a “journey” in the last three years, she continued, to bring it forward into the 21st century.
In 2017, DDD repackaged the traditional Dentinox line – which includes the Cradle Cap Treatment Shampoo, Infant Colic Drops and the pharmacy-only Teething Gel products – cleaning up the design, adding images of babies and making it much clearer as to what each product delivered, she explained.
As DDD started looking into what new products could be added to the portfolio, Holder said the company found that parents didn’t always want an OTC medicine right away but wanted something softer to start with.
For example, the Dentinox Baby Scalp Oil was designed to soothe dry skin on baby’s heads, but also complemented the Dentinox Cradle Cap, which was specifically for cradle cap (seborrheic dermatitis) and contained sodium lauryl ether sulphate.
This distinction between DDD’s natural and OTC medicine products was also reflected in different coloured packaging, with Baby Scalp Oil a lighter shade of blue to indicate its nature as a cosmetic, rather than medicinal product.
“When you talk to parents, they find pharmacy and retail shelves very hard to navigate,” Holder explained. “They want help understanding what is a medicine and what is a non-medicine, because they don’t always want to go straight for the former.”
Innovating in the baby-care category meant creating brands that brought together a variety of solutions to common health issues that babies suffered from, Holder said.
Competitors in the baby-care category often concentrated on standalone products for specific baby health problems, Holder noted. “A lot of these brands are singular in their offering,” she said, “for example, just teething, colic etc. It’s quite a sparse category.”
However, even specific health issues hid a multitude of symptoms, which often manifested differently in different babies, she pointed out.
When it came to decongestants, for example, “what works for one baby might not work for another,” she continued, which is why DDD had added the Vapour Bath Bubbles to Snufflebabe line. “Offering a range makes us stand out in the baby-care category,” Holder added.
Furthermore, Snufflebabe Vapour Bath Bubbles – in addition to tapping into the naturals trend – was also designed with the stress of parental life and responsibility in the first year or so in mind, she explained.
“Babies still need to do bath time, even when congested, so we want to help patents keep their routines, she said.