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DOING BUSINESS IN THE ERA OF COVID-19 - HOW VEGAN COMPANIES ARE TACKLING THE CRISIS

HOW VEGAN COMPANIES ARE TACKLING THE CRISIS

The Covid-19 outbreak has presented the world with monumental challenges, and not only concerning physical and mental health. The economic repercussions of the pandemic are set to be much more severe than the 2008 recession, rivaling the Great Depression.  Every industry is making changes and shifts, including vegan companies.

Unprecedented times call for unprecedented actions, and businesses all over the globe have had to roll up their sleeves and find creative solutions to keep their projects running during the crisis, especially when lacking governmental support. 

The business challenges of Covid-19

One industry, however, has managed to defy the odds by promoting a lifestyle fit for the self-improvement, self-care trend we’ve been experiencing throughout the global quarantine: the vegan and plant-based industry. 

Shaun, CEO of the vegan supplements company Future Kind, shares his insights on the current situation, reflecting on the lessons learned and the challenges Covid-19 has presented along the way.

Impact on sales

As job losses and increased uncertainty occupy consumers’ minds, it might seem unlikely to see a boost in sales – but for vegan companies like Vegan Kind, that has not necessarily been the case. The risk of stockpiling, on the other hand, was seen as a bigger threat.

When asked about Covid-19 and the impact it’s had on product sales, Shaun commented:

“Initially, we actually had to pause our non-subscription sales as we were concerned that customers might begin stockpiling, and that with potential manufacturing delays, we wanted to prioritise our current customers and ensure that they kept receiving their product. Once we were able to switch sales back on, we saw a trend of people buying 6 or so months-worth of our vitamins at once”.

Future Kind’s successes are not entirely surprising, as the wellness and beauty industry has experienced a renewed interest from customers wanting to protect their bodies the best they can:

“Vitamin D, which is one of the core ingredients of our product, has strong evidence to show that it can help with immunity and it can be hard to find a plant-based vegan sources like ours”.

New marketing directions

One of the biggest challenges faced by businesses has been revising their marketing strategies to fit in a world where spontaneous trips, outdoor activities, and face-to-face socializing are no longer possible.

While this has become an enormous issue for the hospitality sector, online retailers like Future Kind have been able to re-examine their marketing campaigns to meet demand for new products.

We asked Shaun about this process:

“Interestingly, the pandemic prompted us to both re-examine and eventually launch a vegan vitamin C supplement, which will be available in a few months. While it’s too early to know whether it will have any impact on Covid-19, vitamin C consumption can at least cut both the risk of getting a cold and the duration of it”.

The quest for better health has been a priority for many during these challenging times, and Future Kind was quick to catch up with the trend:

“Initially we had decided against selling it as our view was that it was possible to get enough Vitamin C from whole foods, but when we reviewed it again, we found that the reality was that most people would still benefit from getting more. We count a lot of athletes amongst our customers as well, and we were surprised to discover that they can cut the risk of getting a cold in half by supplementing Vitamin C”.

Logistical challenges

As anyone who’s attempted to get next day shipping on Amazon will attest to, the pandemic has had a sizeable impact on manufacturing and shipping logistics.

But despite frequent delays, Future Kind has managed to keep their customers satisfied: 

“There certainly have and we’re lucky to have a team of experienced operators that have been able to minimise disruptions as much as possible, but inevitably there have been delays. We’ve been fortunate that all of our manufacturing facilities have remained open, though some are only operating with skeleton crews. It has been nice to know that we can continue to still support some workers during a very challenging economic period”.

Plant-based and post-pandemic, where is vegan business heading? 

So, what does the future look like for online vegan companies like Future Kind?

Some might suggest this could be a fruitful time for the industry, which might come out of the other side stronger than ever. The worldwide focus on health, self-improvement, and trying new things is at the core of what attracts people to a vegan lifestyle in the first place:

“Whether or not more people have gone completely vegan during this period is hard to know, but there has certainly been a strong shift toward a more plant-based diet, mostly coming from a health perspective, but also because many of the foods last longer, like almond milk, rice, beans and nuts”!

Health and wellness 

With the strike of the pandemic crisis, consumers have become more health-conscious, urging them to strengthen their immune systems. Fitness centers or gyms have also utilized video platforms to keep their members by conducting exercise sessions or training over the internet. In addition, apps are also becoming more popular and people can easily download these on their mobile devices to guide them in achieving their fitness goals.

There are many companies that take advantage of people’s need to protect health and wellness, such as food supplement companies and healthy meal delivery services. Consultancy services or coaching services also exist for those who want to lose weight through specific types of diet, such as vegan and ketogenic diets. Learn more about the ketogenic diet at https://lifeapps.io/nutrition/the-ketogenic-diet-what-is-it-and-how-does-it-work/.

With different digital marketing strategies, these businesses can increase leads and sales at remarkable speed. Social media and influencer marketing are powerful consumer drivers, encouraging many people to try various products and services to safeguard their health and safety. Of course, content marketing, email marketing, and search engine optimization also play a crucial role in today’s digital marketing landscape for health and wellness businesses.

Indeed, health and wellness businesses are getting more in-demand now more than ever. The vegan business is just a fraction of the vast network of the health and wellness industry.

That's a summary on some specific ways specific vegan companies are addressing this new time since the start of the pandemic.

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