The Future of Gum

The Future of Gum - student project

I kind of liked the idea of a gum with zen koans in the wrapper. Ok, maybe it shouldn’t go that far, but i’m going to try and create a brand of functional gum with an edge towards minimalism. Not sure, might be too abstract, willing to try anyway though.

In one year what do you want your brand to be known for?

Being simple and useful.

The people who love your brand care about most:

Quality of life and products. Being mindful and intentional.

Your Brand is not:

Tongue in cheek.
Over the top.

Above all else your brand stands for:

Less is more.


I kept trying to fill out this information and was drawing blanks. So to get my brain running I’m going to describe the experience I would like to create with this Zen/Minimalist functional style of gum.

First of all, the flavor I would want to see would be Mint Green Tea. Green tea is associative with Zen/minimalism and offers the additional benefit of being functional too**

Green Tea has two major components that offer health benefits. Caffeine and L-Theanine.

Caffeine (in low doses) increases mental clarity and metabolism boost*
L-Theanine reduces anxiety, stress and increases mental alertness*
Mint boosts the immune system, helps fight bad breath, and gives that fresh taste*

This would be a perfect combination of health effects and in a flavor that not many would be adverse to.

As for the experience itself, I would like the packaging to be striking in its simplicity. On the front would be something representing zen/minimalism and a brief description of the flavor/health benefits. On the back would be a simple illustration of a breathing technique commonly found in zen meditation. When you open the package, there would be a quote/proverb/etc. For example,

You unwrap the gum and casually begin chewing with the breathing technique still on your mind from the packaging. The only thing you focus on is breathing, even if it is only for 10-20 seconds. With the freshness of the mint enhancing your awareness and sensation you are truly able to focus. Also, the caffeine and L-theanine won’t hurt either.

Objective: What is the goal of the branding project?

The goal of the branding project is to create a chewing gum that is more than just a past time impulse buy. This brand will create a vivid experience and provide tangible health benefits.

Target: Who is the brand trying to reach demographically and mindset wise?

The brand is trying to reach out to health conscious consumers who are mindful of their purchases and lifestyle. Or just want something different in a saturated market.

Young Adults (18-25) → Most stable gum purchasers and also are increasingly more health conscious. These are also active, do more and more, and lead stress filled lives.
Adults (25+)*untapped market → Although not the most common gum purchaser, they are more likely to be health aware and this type of product would be appealing to them. They also live stress filled lives.

Insight: What deep consumer need is the brand trying to solve?

A desire to get more out life. Can gum do that? Probably not, but branding is more about an idea than the actual product.

Key Idea: The core purpose of the brand should be pithy and inspirational.

Minimalism stands out in a saturated market and it also reflects the values of the intended consumer.

The future of gum is in its functionality.

Refer to experience described initially.

Supporting Facts about the brand

1.  Gum is now acquiring a new role and emerging as a product that provides various functional and value added benefits.
2. Strong flavored value-added pellet gums are likely to add fuel to the chewing gum growth
3. It is entirely possible to create a compelling experience and associative identity around a brand of gum (see Five Gum)

3 word personality.

Less is more.

*I’m operating on the assumption that having this effect is within the realm of the possibility and cost efficient, I am not sure and I am not a gum scientist. I will attempt to research the plausability before the final project is due.
*As I am narrowing down my idea, I feel like I need to reevaluate the target with qualitative data.


L-Theanine reducing stress and increasing alertness:



Part 3 

This is the beginning of my moodboard, I hope its in the right direction!

Beginning of edit in response to feedback on final written report.

The problem these people are facing is that life is busy. During a busy day, there isn’t a lot of room for respite. From my experience, breaks are often five minutes of thinking of something equally as pressing that I had just forgotten about. Cigarettes give you cancer. Walking is good, but sometimes the mind wanders. A gum with the experience described above would help ground you in the moment and help you actually relax instead of just going through the motions.