There’s nothing we love more than a brand that stands out from the crowd And in the play-it-safe world of diapers and baby items, no one is doing it better than Freestyle. The company makes groovy artist-designed “diapers for the parents of today and the planet of tomorrow,” and their approach to brand storytelling is incredibly inspiring. We didn’t think we’d ever use the words “hip” or “edgy” in the same sentence with “diapers,” but Freestyle is flipping the baby brand game on its head, using creativity and clear values to connect with modern parents.
We recently welcomed Mike Constantiner, Cofounder and Head of Brand and Community at Freestyle to our Best Story Wins podcast, where we chatted about his unique perspective on branding and marketing. As we are an agency that mostly works with B2B clients, it was incredibly refreshing to hear someone who works in a less-than-sexy industry find ways to spice things up in their brand storytelling.
Throughout our conversation, Constantiner shared his best tips for Freestyle’s marketing success, so today we’re passing them on to you.
5 Things You Can Learn From Freestyle
From their brand voice to their dazzling diapers, here are the five ways you can follow in Freestyle’s footsteps to stand out from the crowd.
1) Tailor your brand story to the RIGHT customer.
Constantiner says one of his earliest observations about baby products was that brands were tailoring the products for the babies—not the buyer. For example, when Constantiner was changing his two-month-old’s diaper, he noticed it had Mickey Mouse on it. “This little dude has no idea who Mickey Mouse is. He’s not gonna know who Mickey Mouse is for the vast majority of the time that he’s in diapers. And he’s not going to care,” Constantiner says.
That observation gave him a lightning bolt of inspiration. Why cater to the babies when it’s the parents who care if a diaper is sustainable, if it’s absorbent, and if it looks cool? In fact, if everyone else is Disney, Constantiner thought, how could Freestyle be the MTV of parenting brands?
With this motivation, Freestyle is flipping the script. They bring in artists like Cristina Martinez to create chic patterns.
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Their shipments come in colorful packaging you don’t want to throw away.
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And they celebrate real-life pregnant moments.
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Throughout their marketing and storytelling, they center their story on real, modern parenting—and notably stand out because of it.
2) Speak the same language as your audience.
With the goal of becoming the MTV of diaper brands, Freestyle has a clear brand personality and voice that is consistent across all marketing channels.
From their value prop to their newsletter CTA, they know who they’re talking to and they tailor their content appropriately. Whereas other brands may play it safe or rehash outdated stereotypes, Freestyle speaks directly to the hip parent who has traded their Sunday brunches for baby playdates—but hasn’t grown out of their fun, youthful identity.
To cater to this group, Freestyle uses language to connect and show parents that they’re right there with them.
For example, they describe their diapers as “fresh enough to frame.”
They publish blogs like “Why Breastfeeding Is a Bitch” and “Reasons Why We’ve Thought About Leaving Our Kids at the Local Fire Station.”
This approach not only communicates the Freestyle brand personality but creates a level of intimacy with their audience, as they position themselves as a fun friend vs. a tame baby brand.
Tip: Humor is a great way to connect with your audience. Creating memes or funny videos shows that you really understand who they are and what they’re going through. (That said, sometimes finding your brand voice can be tricky. If you’re struggling, use this questionnaire to identify your voice.)
3) Make cool sh*t.
Freestyle is fueled by doing experimental things, as it is a core part of their ethos. This attitude comes across at every level of the brand.
Beyond the creativity of their artist designs, they are always thinking of new ways to connect with their audience. Sometimes this comes to life as new gear. For example, their Mommy & Me Bucket Hat is a piece of Coachella-worthy fashion that cool moms would be proud to rock on their next Target run.
And, of course, they experiment with their content too. For example, on a lark, they asked AI to create to design cribs in the style of some of the most iconic artists of the 20th century.
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This level of creativity and play makes the brand stand out compared to competitors—and makes you eager to see what they do next. Of course, Constantiner admits that not every experiment is a win. But the more they can try and learn, the better they can build the Freestyle world to win over their audience.
Tip: No matter how boring your industry, product, service, or tool is, there are always ways to push the envelope. Start with these 5 tips to create bold marketing that stands out.
4) Give your audience things that make their life better.
If you want to successfully experiment, build relationships with your audience, and grow your business, you need to not just know your audience but continue to get to know them. This way you can serve them the things they want and need—that they don’t even realize they want and need.
For Freestyle, Constantiner keeps his finger on the pulse by having real conversations with his customers. After any purchase, customers get an automatic email, in which he introduces himself and offers the opportunity to hop on a quick 15-minute phone call with him. By doing four or five of these calls a week, Constantiner says he gets a much more robust picture of his audience’s day-to-day challenges, which informs the type of products Freestyle creates (e.g., diaper wipes) and the type of content they put out.
For example, Freestyle offers a free sticker pack when you sign up for their email list. They also curate a fun playlist for parents to listen to on stroller walks.
@freestyle.worldFreestyle’s resident daddy DJ MICK put together a little summer playlist for yall. Great for stroller walks or dreaming of the days when you could lounge by the pool. Link in bio ⛱️🎵♬ original sound – freestyle
These little things provide unexpected moments of joy and helps improve the overall Freestyle brand experience.
Tip: You can provide value to your audience by creating content that educates, entertains, or inspires them. If you’re short on creativity, try these hacks to brainstorm more valuable content ideas.
5) Educate your audience about the things you care about.
Sustainability is a huge part of the Freestyle brand (which is why they use 100% bamboo pulp to create their diapers). And while they know that their audience cares about causing less damage to the environment, they also know that not everybody understands why traditional diapers are such a problem.
To keep this conversation going, Freestyle educates their audience across channels.
This helps them publicize their brand values—and attract customers who care about the same things.
Tip: Sharing your brand heart (purpose, vision, mission, values) through content is one of the best ways to make your brand stand out and start new conversations. See how these brands are turning the issues they care about into great marketing.
How to Make Your Brand Stand Out
Whether you’re an edgy diaper brand or a SaaS startup, here are a few more ways to make sure your brand story lands with the right people.
- Focus on becoming a human-first, not product-first company. No matter what you do, you are doing it for real people. Find out how to put this thinking front and center in your marketing.
- Create a strong visual identity. An eye-catching design will always help you grab attention, but to do this effectively, you need an identity that accurately reflects your brand personality. See our guide to build a brand identity to make sure you have all the tools you need to create on-brand content.
- Get more real-life inspiration. See our deep dives to find out how brands like Liquid Death, Zendesk, and Canva are making waves in their industries.
And, of course, if you want to be a better marketer, you want to stay on top of the best tips and trips from the pros. Start by subscribing to our Best Story Wins podcast to find out how marketing expertise are winning hearts, minds, and market share.