The story of WaterWipes demonstrates the effectiveness of advertising in its purest form – i.e. take a great product, bring it to the masses in the right way and watch demand become so great that you have to build a brand new factory just to keep up with it! To fully appreciate the story of the brand, we need to first briefly tell the story of the man behind it – Louth native Edward McCloskey.
Edward’s father set up the Boyne Valley group, so Edward grew up in a culture that encouraged entrepreneurial spirit. From early on in his career, he constantly strived to develop new products and new solutions for problems that, in most cases, had gone unrecognised by others. The quest that led to WaterWipes was no different. It began in 2006 when Edward became a parent and his daughter suffered with severe nappy rash. This prompted the always-inquisitive Edward to investigate what was actually in the baby wipes his family was using. He was horrified to discover that even wipes claiming to be pure or for sensitive skin were choc full of chemicals. He wanted a chemical-free wipe and when he couldn’t find one, he set about inventing it.
Four intense years working with scientists, dermatologists and microbiologists led Edward to a major discovery – that by modifying the properties of water and making the H20 molecule clusters smaller, they could in fact penetrate the dirt on the skin more easily and therefore naturally clean it. This had never been done before in the baby wipes category and it led to the birth of WaterWipes; a revolutionary product that was a world’s first, so build it and they will come, right? Not exactly.
In 2015, having been in multiples for four years but only showing modest growth, the decision was taken to advertise WaterWipes for the first time. We were a tiny brand with a budget to match and we were going up against a fiercely competitive market dominated by familiar, trusted and big-spending brands – heavyweight household names like Pampers and J&J. And if that wasn’t difficult enough, WaterWipes came with a premium price tag that required consumers to pay up to three times as much as the competition in a heavily discounted category.
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