Coley Porter Bell freshens up sanitary brand Kotex

Coley Porter Bell has revamped sanitary protection brand Kotex and claims to rethink the traditionally conservative sector, as the brand responds to increasingly tough competition from rivals.

The rebranded Kotex products will start to appear in stores next week. The revamped packaging eschews ‘traditional apologetic pastel colour-schemes’ for black, white and red imagery, says CPB creative director Stephen Bell. He claims the brand is shifting the category from ‘functional paper products’ to ‘personal care’.

Kotex parent Kimberly-Clark worked closely with the consultancy in the development of the brand strategy, following a lengthy repositioning study incorporating user research and trend evaluation. The brand aims to project the positivity of femininity rather than the negativity of periods, Bell says.

A crimson stiletto is featured on both the front and back of the packaging, and the Kotex logo has been revamped to incorporate the female logo as a lower-case ‘t’ and emboldened ‘e’ and ‘x’. A red dot is used to create synergy with the Kotex advertising.

‘It’s time women’s sanitary protection products came out of the closet and revelled in the possibilities enjoyed by all other brands,’ Bell says. ‘This is a radical change from the usual visual language of this sector.’

Kimberly-Clark is facing a tough year. It saw a decline in fourth quarter earnings last year as competition mounted from rival Proctor & Gamble, particularly in the nappies market. Kotex currently lags third in the sanitary protection sector behind P&G’s Always brand and Bodyform by SCA Hygiene.

CPB won the work without a pitch on the strength of previous work with Kimberly-Clark. Although not officially retained, it is the company’s ‘main consultancy’ and has revamped several other brands, including Huggies, according to Bell.

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