Self-empowerment, social mission resonate with new generation of supplement users

“With our social mission focused on mental health, we are weaving more ‘real talk’ into our content to help consumers feel seen,” said Jessica Heitz, chief marketing officer of Olly, in a Fast Company article exploring how to sell health and wellness when consumers are sick and tired of hearing about it. “Gen Z cares about brands that make a difference and we amplify our social mission in our marketing.”

“Many millennial-minded consumers didn’t find the vitamin and supplement category was relevant to them,” Heitz explained. “While traditional vitamin brands talk about the problems people face, Olly focuses on the benefit—and that approach brought an entirely new consumer into the vitamin aisle who had never shopped there before.”

By the numbers: According to the 2021 CRN Consumer Survey on Dietary Supplements, among U.S. adults 18–34 years old:

  • 14% do not take supplements and have never taken supplements
  • 13% have taken supplements in the past but no longer consider themselves a supplement user
  • 11% consider themselves a seasonal user of supplements, taking supplements only during part of the year such as the winter cold and flu season or the spring allergy season
  • 15% consider themselves an occasional user of supplements, taking them throughout the year when they think of it or when the need arises
  • 18% take a supplement regularly, but take only a multivitamin
  • 29% take supplements regularly and take a variety of vitamins, minerals and/or herbal products or specialty supplements

Older adults are more likely to regularly take multiple supplements, with:

  • 42% of 35–54 year olds and
  • 57% of adults 55 and older in this category.

Overall, Heitz noted, “We’ve found that benefit-driven ads (e.g., sleep) and the feeling (e.g., well-rested), as opposed to ingredient-led messaging (e.g., melatonin) resonate best with consumers.”