News 08.06.2021

Need To Know

A sci-fi podcast rebranding reflects spiritual escapism, Gay Times recruits Gen Z creators and the spirits that are pushing alcohol’s global recovery.

Podcast rebranded as Realm to capture audio escapism

Realm app rebranding by Mother Design
Realm app rebranding by Mother Design
Realm app rebranding by Mother Design

US – Audio entertainment company Serial Box has rebranded as Realm to capture a sense of magical escapism for its listeners.

The sci-fi and fantasy fiction podcast worked with creative agency Mother Design to create the new name and identity. Its new name increases the platform’s searchability, while also representing a sense of refuge and other-worldliness. Portal-like graphics symbolise entrances to metaphysical realms, while a primarily purple and near-black colour palette is intended to represent ‘inclusivity, magic, spirituality, vitality and creativity’, according to Mother.

The branding also reflects ‘the journey listeners take in the act of escapist, psychological world-building’. Considering Realm’s inclusion of culturally under-represented voices, writers and characters, Mother Design also adds: ‘We wanted to reflect that progressive intention in Realm’s new aesthetic.’

With audiences showing a strong desire for escapism, fiction books and audio platforms are tuning into this need through alternative reading experiences.

Notorious Nooch is a vibrant vegan flavour hit

Notorious Nooch Co Notorious Nooch Co
Notorious Nooch Co Notorious Nooch Co

UK – The plant-based brand offers nutritional yeast as a bold vegan flavouring to be added to foods.

Through vibrant branding, Notorious Nooch is elevating nutritional yeast, which has grown in popularity as an ingredient in recent years, owing to its cheese-like taste. With two playfully named flavours – Smoky Bacon Nooch and Cheesy Immature Nooch – the brand's visual identity intentionally riffs on the health food category's usual design codes.

'We wanted fonts that were fun, slightly nostalgic and a little bit hippie – leaning into the connotations of nutritional yeast and a vegan product line,' says Sam Fresco, co-founder of Notorious Nooch Co and strategy director at Wildish & Co, the agency behind the branding. Notorious Nooch's bold colour palette represents the flavours on offer, with green and yellow used for cheese and red and pink for bacon. The graphic figures and curved typography add to its eye-catching style.

As plant-based diets grow in popularity, brands have an opportunity to redefine outdated visual elements and instead embrace the idea of Vibrant Veganism.

Gay Times hands the reins to Gen Z

GT133 by Gay Times GT133 by Gay Times

UK – Gay Times has recruited a group of young queer creatives to create content for its newly launched TikTok channel.

Its new group, GT133, harnesses the voices and insights of Generation Z to expand the platform’s global reach and elevate its existing digital presence. Formed of eight members, each were chosen by Gay Times for their attitude, confidence, individuality and talent, as showcased in their existing presence and popularity on TikTok. Members of the group will create exclusive content for the platform’s TikTok channel, while Gay Times will provide the creatives with mentorship and media industry connections.

‘I have always believed that Gay Times should be democratised by handing the power of our platforms into the hands of community voices themselves,’ says Tag Warner, CEO at Gay Times. ‘Gay Times has always had a pioneering spirit – and I am very excited to be launching GT133 and our next generation of faces of the Gay Times brand.’

This initiative shows how media brands can co-create with their audiences to produce engaging and relevant content on a Gen Z-focused platform like TikTok.

Stat: Global alcohol sector shows signs of recovery

Desolas, US Desolas, US

The global alcohol market is showing promising signs of recovery after a drop in sales during the pandemic.

According to IWSR Drinks Market Analysis, alcohol volume sales are set to rise by nearly 3% in 2021, with total consumption expected to return to pre-Covid levels by 2023. Interestingly, one of the fastest-growing drinks categories is non-alcoholic ‘spirits’, which is expected to grow by 30.6% from 2021 to 2025.

The data also highlights the growth of tequila, which grew by 9.6% in 2020 and has overtaken rum as the third-largest spirits category in the US. Meanwhile, IWSR predicts that gin sales will increase at a CAGR of 4.5%, with Brazil, South Africa and Russia providing key sales. ‘In many global markets, Covid-19 accelerated the impact and growth of key industry drivers, such as the development of e-commerce, premiumisation, the rise of the ‘home premise’, moderation and the need for convenience in product formats,' says Mark Meek, CEO of IWSR.

As the global spirits market recovers, drinks brands are innovating to attract new audiences. For more, read our Modern Mezcal microtrend.

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