Interview with Jamie Webb, founder of KIT & COCO
How do you launch a new product in a crowded and competitive market? Founder Jamie Webb explains why and how he created head lice treatment brand KIT & COCO.
What’s your career background?
I’ve worked across a variety of industries including 10 years in hospitality and a decade in project management for equity capital markets transactions, with a focus on brand communications.
Where did the idea for KIT & COCO come from? What inspired you to create it?
We noticed a gap in the market for a plant-based, gentle yet effective way to free little heads from lice and nits which appealed to children and parents alike.
How did you move from idea to actual product?
We’ve worked in tandem with some of the most respected scientists and independent lice experts in this very specific field, to ensure that our products deliver results. From the start, our researchers have been dedicated to using plant based active ingredients to get rid of head lice and nits.
The way which KIT & COCO products work is by clogging the respiratory system of lice and nits (eggs) and asphyxiating them. In recent years, there have been several scientific studies published on the increased resistance lice have to chemicals.
Due to genetic mutations, lice have found a way to survive treatments that are insecticide-based. This is why our KIT & COCO experts have developed an effective formulae based on coconut oil. It’s nature vs nature!
What makes KIT & COCO unique?
KIT & COCO offers a selection of fun and effective plant based products for the prevention and treatment of head lice & nits (eggs).
Within the subset of naturally-derived competitor products in the UK market, KIT & COCO sets itself apart by offering a full treatment kit including treatment shampoos, an applicator brush, a lice and nit (egg) comb, protective shower cap and little surprise treat for little ones.
In addition, the KIT & COCO product range has been carefully designed with little ones in mind. Right from the lovable KIT & COCO characters, which add fun and reduce the stigma associated with head lice, to the stylish accessories designed for boys and girls and the little surprise ‘treat’ to be found in KIT & COCO’s treatment kits.
Your branding is very strong. How important was it for you to get it right?
KIT & COCO is the first product range in its category that has been specifically designed to appeal to kids, by using the creation of two rather charming characters, KIT & COCO.
Together, KIT & COCO offer children a friendly approach (and helpful hands) to make them feel more comfortable in dealing with the horrid situation of lice and nits. We’re dedicated to making happy hair which in turn leads to happy children!
What’s been your most successful marketing strategy?
KIT & COCO is relatively new to the UK market and we understand how important it is to get parents using the products and talking about the range with their friends.
From building an engaged community of parents via our KIT & COCO Facebook page to the intimate launch event which we held for parenting media and bloggers in May, we want to lead the conversation with those who are affected by head lice and nits on a regular basis.
What’s been the biggest obstacle you’ve had to overcome?
As with most products, KIT & COCO has entered into a competitive market with clear established leaders within the category. Our mission is to offer parents and families something a little different which is 100% effective and fun, to minimise the discomfort caused by head lice and nits.
And your proudest moment so far?
We received an incredibly positive response from the parenting bloggers who attended our launch event in May and a fair few key players in the field have mentioned that KIT & COCO is offering something a little different.
We have also been nominated for “Best Over the Counter Product” in this year’s Pharmacist Awards which is a great honour considering we are such a new product to the UK market.
What are your top happy hair tips?
It’s no secret that prevention tends to be better than cure which is why it’s important to take simple precautions to avoid catching or spreading the little critters.
Head lice don’t have wings, nor can they fly or hop from head to head. The only way head lice can be passed on is through head to head contact; whether this is during playground games, selfies, sharing hairbrushes, or even when two hats or scarves touch on the communal coat rack.
Keeping your little one’s hair tied up in a ponytail, plait or bun is a great start to preventing head lice.
And finally, your top three business tips for other aspiring entrepreneurs?
1) Understand your audience
With KIT & COCO, we designed the product to appeal to families and provide them with relief from head lice and nits. We understand how stressful the little critters can be, which is why we’ve sought to provide something fun yet efficient which appeals to parents and children alike.
Our complete treatment kit ensures that parents can easily pick up in store or online and have everything they need to get rid of head lice and nits right away. It’s a fuss-free solution that makes the day-to-day life of parenting just that little bit easier.
2) Know your competition
It’s pretty difficult to find an area which doesn’t have multiple brands competing to be number one, and head lice and nit prevention and treatment products is no different.
One essential element to success is to provide your audience with something a little different. Our products have been carefully designed with little ones in mind – right from the lovable KIT & COCO characters, to the handy shower cap to allow your little ones to play while the treatment gets rid of the nasty pests, and the little surprise ‘treat’ found in KIT & COCO’s treatment kits.
3) Have a team that’s dedicated
From your sales force to your PR and social support, you want to have people on-board who are dedicated and knowledgeable about the product. These are the people who can really drive awareness for your brand and champion your cause across the channels which work best for you.
You can find out more about KIT & COCO on their website.