Maddie Cullen
November 9 2018

Unless you’ve been somehow diligently eating nothing but the standard 3 meals a day, you might have noticed that snacks are big! Bigger than ever in fact. And, thanks to trends like the deliciousness of avocados, healthy eating has driven a whole new way to nibble.

In this new market, challengers have been emerging and taking over. But what is this magic formula that helps these brands rise up for world domination you ask? Well, that’s what we’ve set out to explore.

We’re looking specifically at Hippeas, Indie Bay, Yushoi, Propercorn and Emily Crisps to unpick what makes these brands so successful, or in fact, similar.


One of the most obvious things that sets these burgeoning brands apart is their visuals. They each go for bold and distinct looks that fall into two categories: simplistic or artistic. Brands will either opt for a singular visual narrative that guides everything they do, such as Hippeas distinctive yellow. Or a brand will follow a bold and arty route, like Emily Crisps fun vegetable and fruit patterns.


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A post shared by HIPPEAS (@hippeas_snacks) on

Packing is obviously a huge part of this and for a new snack brand this can be the final decision to purchase. Propercorn went with an artistic route and recently got separate artists to design the look for each of their flavours.

This was a huge undertaking from them but helps to make each one special and encourage people to try and collect them all. It also shows an encouragement of independent creatives, and makes them much more personable. And, of course, it really sets them apart on the shelf!


One thing every brand I looked at had in common was the calorie count on the bag. Although healthy eating has moved away from the usual ‘low-fat’ and calorie counting dialogue, there is still the knowledge that the less calories, the better the snack is for you.

Rather than simply making the claim, however, these brands put the number on the packet front and centre, so consumers can make their own decisions based on the information given.


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A post shared by Yushoi Snacks (@yushoisnacks) on

It also plays into a lot of the health-conscious apps people are using now. As people track their eating, they often need to log how many calories each meal contains and having it on the bag makes it easier for everyone.

Everything from Propercorn to Yushoi, Hippeas and Indie Bay, all showcase their calorie offering. And it’s worth noting that each one is either under or just over 100 calories.

Emily Crisps are the exception here, but they do list that they’re one of your 5 a day, which leads us to my next point.


It’s not just the calorie count that these brands want to shout about. A lot of them have established their whole positioning around being a guilt-free and healthy snack.

This comes from everything, whether packaging, imagery or even their names.

On their websites, the brands feature ‘healthy’ imagery. Yushoi has yoga mats and Emily Crisps is covered with photos of fruit and vegetables. The others leave it to social media, but there’s always gym wear, outdoor activities or a cup of herbal tea to make it clear that these snacks fit into a healthy lifestyle.

And some of them take it even further by making sure their packaging says it all. Emily Crisps take an obvious approach with fruit and veg patterns, but Indie Bay take a slightly different approach. All their packaging features bright silhouettes of outdoor spaces, showcasing the natural and good-for-you nature of the brand.


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These Smokin’ BBQ Bites are free of trans-fats, vegan and under 100 calories. Hit like if you’d love to try them! #HappySnacking

A post shared by Indie Bay Snacks (@indiebaysnacks) on

And some of them make sure to spell it out. Literally. Through their words.

Indie Bay’s tagline is about being a snack ‘without the guilt or the grease’. Yushoi talks about being ‘the perfect balance’. They each have a positioning which aims to reassure potential and existing customers that their snack is not only the right choice, but a good one.


And last, but not least, every good brand these days needs a killer back story. They need a purpose to exist. Each brand I’ve looked at has a unique and interesting tale to tell of why they just had to make these snacks.

Indie Bay describes the night the lightbulb went on, Propercorn has pictures of the woman who created it from a childhood hobby, Emily Crisps has her name in the actual brand. Hippeas and Sushoi are slightly more removed, but they’re still just as interesting to read about.

Propercorn story from their website
(Image: Propercorn)

Whilst the others may be personal, Hippeas’ story is about their reason for being. The ‘Power to the Peapeople’ sentiment isn’t so much about any movement in particular, but instead for ‘modern hippies’ and speaks to anyone that wants something against the norm.

Although they’re not saying as much, it’s still personal and suggests customers are at the heart, which helps them seem more down to earth.

There are a lot of reasons these snacks brands exist. And although we’ve shown strong comparisons, one thing that helps them stand out is being individual and original. These similarities are what the market is clearly favouring right now, so any snack brands that want to join them at the top should think about getting their visuals, calories and backstory in shape.

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