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Client research identified a market opportunity for high quality Greek olive oil in the Chicago/Midwest market. Greece makes the finest olive oil in the world and much like wine grapes, fine olive oil is also distinguished in flavor by the type of olive and region it's grown. Kolossos with family ties to the olive oil industry in Greece identified the very best olive groves with the goal of importing the finest 100% extra virgin olive oil from Greece's most select regional varietals. The branding and marketing strategy was to firmly establish the new comers brand name, support the products origin, claims of quality and position the product specifically by regional flavor attributes (a first in the olive oil industry). The design approach was to further qualify the product within the fine olive oil category as well as differentiate it within that same category of competitors.
Kolossos olive oil is 100% Greek, 100% Virgin, each flavor is of only one regional varietals and the olive oil is unfiltered. The product is as authentically itself as it can be. Therefore, the design strategy became about getting out of the way of a great product and letting that product sell itself boldly, with transparency, confidence and strength inherent in the Kolossos name.
The industry expectation for olive oil containers was dark tinted glass, an expectation that didn't let consumers to see the product. Not seeing the product was incongruent with the design strategy, a custom-made clear glass bottle was chosen. The design approach used the clear glass to create a "picture window" effect for the product, allowing for light to move through the olive oil, creating a dynamic grow and level dimension that further enhances the presentation and desirability of the product. Also eliminated were graphical embellishments of agricultural, historical or ethnical imagery common in the olive oil packaging category. Instead an overall minimal design approach was undertaken to incorporate only what was absolutely needed to properly stage the product for ideal shelf appeal and consumer understanding.
Simple and purposeful typography is used to deliver fundamental product information quickly, such as the flavor; Mild, specific olive varietal; Manaki, and its region of growth; Argolida. Color is used to distinguish flavor; black and green for the hearty "Robust" flavor and white and blue for the delicate "Mild" flavor.
Another aspect of the design approach was designing the packaging in such a way the consumer would want display it in their kitchen or on a counter top. With this in mind, a unique pour top was designed onto the bottle to minimize oil dripping down the sides, in the event that it does, the bottle was not only exclusively painted and silk screened for maximum first impressions but to also maintain ongoing appearances. Design and production decisions also carefully took into consideration the targeted consumer price point.
Upon its launch, Kolossos olive oil met with immediate success, they contracted representation with America's largest specialty food distributor (a decision heavily influenced by the packaging). The consumer food retailers that carry the Kolossos brand are a national, regional and local list of who's who. Kolossos has also had commercial success selling their olive oil to restaurateurs with Michelin Star credentials to James Beard winning chefs. Given the high quality of the product and supporting design, Kolossos is often invited to show case their olive oil at many of Chicago's progressive food, fashion and design events, in 2014 Kolossos olive oil was voted the City of Chicago's best new "Indie" food.