This jerky brand boasted its growth by just redesigning its brand package
A smart rebrand helps Lawless Jerky better communicate its company ethos.
The first and the biggest priority for Matt Tolnick and Dan Kaplan when they first founded their food startup, Lawless Jerky, were controlling the expenses. According to Tolnick they have to hire an online illustrator to design the packaging, who was paid just $100 an up-close illustration of a Lady Justice peeping beneath her signature blindfold. The illustration signals as Tolnick’s past as attorney.
The basic packaging couldn’t stop Lawless Jerky from growing and increasing the sales to millions of dollars. However, Tolnick and Kaplan have recently felt the need to change the packaging design in order to keep the growth pace consistent. We have a chance to talk to the founders of Lawless Jerky who disclosed why they decided to alter the packaging and how has this rebranding help them tell a better brand story.
How did you come up with the idea of placing “Lady Lawless” on the front of package come from?
Matt Tolnick: It is inspired by a poster print of an image I once saw on a shop once. The zoomed-in image of Lay Lawless worked really well for us. People who didn’t know what our business was about would come into the shop just because of the poster; some even thought it was sometimes of a rock band T-shirt
But one of our largest retailers gave us feedback that the zoomed-in image with the blindfold could be interpreted as a symbol of female bondage or oppression. We’ve always thought of Lady Lawless as defiant, strong-willed, bold and proud like our “Braver Flavors.” So that didn’t sit well with us—and it partially inspired the rebrand.
Although some people had other opinions for example our biggest retailer told us that the image could be used as representation of women slavery and oppression. However, we look at the Lady Lawless image as bold, strong, independent and strong-willed like “Braver Flavors”. So this was partially the inspiration behind rebranding.
Dan Kaplan: We have very supportive fans and we always take into account all the criticism as we work hard to make our jerky and the packaging better every day.
How are you advertising that Lady Lawless image serves as basis for Lady Justice?
MT: We thought that we can minimize misunderstanding by showing a zoomed-in image of Lady Lawless with a Lady Justice like traditional attire. Now on the new packaging she is shown lifting her own blindfold, which appears more defiant and free-spirited figure.
We always make sure to pay attention to details and whether it’s the bag packaging or our jerky. The image of Lady Lawless even has a tattoo on her if you inspect closely.
The texture of the bag is very unique, it’s made of plastic but feels almost like paper why was it made that way?
DK: So in order for our jerky to stay fresh for longer time and to maintain a “Braver Flavor” we decided to leave the craft paper packaging. But, we don’t want to let go of our jerky heritage so we searched to find the perfect packaging material that maintain both the texture and the product’s quality.
Our new logo of improved Lady Lawless image on our bad and our dynamic layout are all merged to make sure we the our jerky reputation as premium craft jerky.