How do you stand out in a marketplace as a smaller company, where most of
the products are claiming similar quality and product ranges?
The reality of the CBD landscape now is that we have better overall governance across the industry
and hence quality claims are now widespread, which is not to say that all products are delivering on
Typically, brands invest in a variety of marketing – ranging from SEO, google ads, media and social
media. Dr K CBD posed the suggestion that you can’t really compete on that level as a smaller
company, without big budgets or celebrity endorsements.
Hence boutique brands really need to consider what their brand offers beyond the product?
Manish Patel and Dr Karunadasa both co founded Dr K CBD and they want their brand to go beyond
the commercial relationship most companies aim for. They believe it is their duty to support their
customers. By doing this they can compete and market themselves beyond bigger players to achieve
their ambitious goals.
Regardless of the limitation in medical claims that the UK and other countries place on the CBD
industry. The reality is consumers are struggling with life problems ranging from pain to sleep
alongside a plethora of other issues. They are looking for help that conventional healthcare does not
meet. Hence for the founders behind Dr K CBD it was a natural step to look at their brand beyond
the products it offers.
Dr Karunadasa thinks “Modern consumers will see through marketing with thinly veiled placements
and celebrity endorsements” as being a “paid” way to exposure and sales.
“Although that will work with the right budget, consumers who are struggling with problems need
sincere and honest engagement”.
They aim to help customers in a similar way to a patient going to their doctor. So, when it came to
considering what value Dr K CBD added for consumers, they felt the message needed to be
congruent with the brand's origins and ethos. Hence, they set up as a wellbeing brand rather than
purely a CBD brand. They use “treating customers like patients” as a tagline.
This felt true to themselves and offered consumers more value added than products alone.
They accomplish this by offering individual advice via social media and often send customers away if
they do not feel that CBD is the right option for them. They aim to offer clinics and wellbeing
seminars, that are aimed at general health issues rather than claiming CBD to be the answer to all
The aim is to educate the customers such that they can make “informed decisions”, which is a
technique used in healthcare to help patients make the best decision based on their unique
Equally most issues that customers have may need a multi-level approach of conventional health
care alongside supplements.
An example would be educating individuals on “sleep hygiene”. These are lifestyle changes that help
promote good quality sleep. Alternatively, addressing underlying stress or anxiety, that may affect
sleep, instead of recommending CBD products alone.
By doing this they create a brand loyal customer base that returns again and again. They find that
loyalty allows them strong brand resilience in a very competitive industry.
Clearly not all brands will have a doctor on hand to help. Dr Karunadasa, believes that just like all
customers are unique, each brand will have unique aspects that they can utilise to create that
What is that? Well, that is up to those brands, but to survive in an ever more competitive field they
will be forced to get the message of what makes them unique across to their customers.
Dr K CBD chose wellbeing over pure commercialism and challenge the industry to feel it is their duty
to see their customers beyond a transaction. By doing this they believe the entire community moves
further away from the unregulated space it once was and further towards a professional space more
akin to healthcare which will benefit both consumers and companies alike.