BevNET TV: An Interview with Seth Goldman of Honest Tea

In tiptoeing its way through a label refresh, Honest Tea might want to consider publishing a book about the experience. The company could call it, “How to Win Friends and Not Alienate Your Fanatic Consumer Base.”

Though Honest Tea initiated redesign plans nearly three years ago, the company only recently – and quietly — launched a new label design for its PET line of bottled tea and Honest Ade products. Seth Goldman, the President and “TeaEO” of Honest Tea, explained that as the company made the recent move into national distribution with Coca-Cola, the line needed a bigger visual impact on store shelves to attract new consumers.

“We’re in our first year of launching nationally with all of the Coke distributors across the country, and we did a pretty deep dive on our packaging just to see if it was as strong as it could be,” Goldman said. “We realized there was room for improvement.”

In an interview filmed at the recently held Natural Products Expo East show in Baltimore, Goldman spoke with BevNET editor Jeffrey Klineman about the label redesign and the key points analyzed in deciding how to approach the packaging change.

“For us, we wanted to make sure the name jumped out… we wanted to make sure it was really clear.” Goldman said. “We [also] wanted to make sure that the varieties were easy to discern and make sure you can see the product from across a room.”

The new design features more white space on the label, greater emphasis on the word “Honest,” and emphasizes Honest Tea’s ingredients and the fact that the product is brewed with real tea leaves.

In this video, Goldman talks more about the rebranding and discusses the early feedback Honest Tea has received from its famously outspoken consumers. Goldman also explains how the company will look to achieve greater penetration of convenience stores in the South with the launch of its “(Not Too) Sweet Tea,” and speaks about the experience the Honest Tea sales team has had as the new standard-bearer for Coke products when dealing with natural and specialty retailers.