The story

The SnackWell’s brand of cookies, cakes, pretzels and more was formed in 1992 with the intent of providing consumers with good-tasting, healthier options of their favorite treats.

The brand, famous for its fat-free products, now produces peanut-free items as well as snacks made with whole wheat — meeting shoppers’ current desires for better-for-them, on-the-go snacking items.

The challenge

The SnackWell’s brand, best known for its fat-free Devil’s Food Cookie Cakes, peaked in the 1990s. Purchased in 2013 from Mondelēz brands, SnackWell’s is now distributed by the Back to Nature Food Company.

Back to Nature Foods turned to McDill Associates, a strategic marketing firm with more than 20 years of brand experience, for a national rebranding project for the SnackWell’s brand of cookies and snacks.

McDill has executed award-winning marketing and design strategies for an impressive list of brands in the food and beverage categories, and boasts a talented team of design and marketing professionals consistently recognized over the years for effective execution of a wide range of marketing strategies.

Within an aggressive timeline, McDill was tasked with re-establishing and evolving the original look of the SnackWell’s brand. The direction was to create a fresh look that evoked the brand consumers fell in love with in the 90s and reignited emotional relationships with loyalists, while drawing in new shoppers who are family-focused.

The solution

Starting with the brand logo, McDill developed packaging for the hero SKUs as well as messaging and positioning.

As part of McDill’s strategic recommendations, the designs were presented to shoppers through an online proof of concept research study. With this data in hand, McDill rolled out packaging for the rest of the line (more than 20 SKUs in all) and developed additional materials including a retail sales presentation, brand style guide, lifestyle and product photography, and various marketing assets.

“McDill was integral to the success of the SnackWell’s relaunch,” says Mark Eisenacher, director of marketing for Back to Nature. “The team’s work far exceeded our expectations, from strategy and concept to working with our print vendors and supporting the rollout. Reception from both customers and consumers has been great, and we are confident that this relaunch is going to elevate the SnackWell’s brand in the retail segments that we are focused on.”

McDill is continuing to support the SnackWell’s brand as its parent company develops new strategies and product innovations as part of its repositioning.

“There is nothing our team enjoys more than working on a project like the SnackWell’s relaunch from start to finish,” notes Melissa McDill, the firm’s president and creative director. “We all knew the brand and saw great potential in the relaunch opportunity. Back to Nature is an innovative company, and we enjoy partnering with them to support the brand’s continued success for both the SnackWell’s and Back to Nature product lines,” she concludes.

Since the beginning of summer, shoppers have been seeing the new SnackWell’s packaging in stores, through national marketing and in digital campaigns.  BP


McDill Associates

1. The brand has entered a simpler era with its newly reformulated and reinvigorated product line, featuring healthier and family-friendly indulgences free from high fructose corn syrup and partially hydrogenated oils.

2. McDill Associates began the redesign by placing a more prominent emphasis on the brand name. Consumers familiar with the treats will feel a sense of nostalgia when seeing the package: The design team brought back the brand’s instantly recognizable green and white scheme — colors used heavily throughout the brand’s history.

 3. Younger buyers looking for healthier options for their families are drawn in by the product imagery, a notable feature on each of the 20-plus SKUs of cakes, cookies, pretzels and more. Additional violators such as “peanut free,” “fat free” and “on the go” help seal their decisions to buy.