All dogs deserve to live a happy and healthy life. But so often pet parents lack the right products to give dogs the level of care they’d demand for themselves. Looking to stress the importance of hygiene in the health and wellbeing of your dog, Floof partnered with branding and marketing agency SMAKK to create a more “human” brand for dogs that provides better care – from head to tail.
Floof is a dog wellness brand that creates premium products to address the specific fur and skin needs of dogs. It was founded by entrepreneur Michael Kim, who partnered with a vet dermatologist to formulate products that focused on skin health. Floof also provides support to the community, giving back to dog shelters and other charities. Working with SMAKK meant building a brand that clearly underscored their values and approach.
“Our biggest challenge was to help create the brand in a way that felt credible and science-backed, similar to what we were seeing in the human skincare space,” explains SMAKK Founder Katie Klencheski. “But we also had to balance that with making fur and skincare a fun, enjoyable and essential part of caring for your dog. We wanted to use the brand to bring awareness to the role that skin health plays in the overall health of your dog, not just for targeted relief, but as a preventative approach for greater wellbeing.”
SMAKK led everything from brand strategy and visual identity to packaging, ecommerce design and development, messaging, DTC strategy and more – putting a large focus on education to position Floof as a leader in dog hygiene. “All of Floof’s formulas were new to the market, so we wanted to make sure that we were really educating consumers – not just what was in the formulas, but what each of the ingredients did specifically to help,” adds Klencheski. Messaging also avoided words like “grooming”, instead applying the same standards and expectations that humans have for their products. This meant using language that spoke more to credibility, prevention and wellness versus how dogs looked.
Visually, SMAKK introduced illustrative gestural marks into the identity system, communicating a movement inherent to the product’s usage experience that also pairs well with the cleaner, more clinical type decisions throughout the branding. Similarly, the brand’s portrait illustrations of people with their dogs act as a sparing, but hand-hewn compliment to the photography, adding flourishes of humanity to the overall tone.
SMAKK's design and development teams also worked to mirror this balance in the creation of the ecommerce site, providing educational product info as well as accessible and functional user experiences alongside surprising moments of joy. For example, users that scroll to the site footer are greeted by tennis balls cascading from the top of the page.
Lastly, both Floof’s shampoo and conditioner are packaged in easily recyclable aluminum bottles with the option to subscribe so that the pumps can be retained to minimize single-use plastic. All products are designed to feel modern, minimal, and created to fit right in with human hair care products already in your bath.
“As a studio we are always seeking projects that merge our personal interests with what we want to see in the world,” says Klencheski. “With half of our team having pets at home, Floof’s wellbeing-focused approach to skincare for dogs was a natural fit. It’s been an exciting journey to help bring this to life and we can’t wait for the wider community of pet parents to experience what makes Floof so special.”