Top Companies Report

49. Method

June 29, 2012

San Francisco, CA
Sales: $112 million (estimated).

Key Personnel: Drew Fraze, chief executive officer; Adam Lowry, co-founder and chief greenskeeper; Eric Ryan, co-founder and chief brand architect.

Major Products: Laundry detergent; home cleaning products including all-purpose cleaning sprays, dish soap, bathroom cleaners, floor cleaners and antibacterial cleaners; and personal care, mainly in form of gel and foaming hand washes.

New Products: Antibacterial Kitchen Spray (lemon verbena + orange zest), Antibacterial Bathroom Spray (spearmint); Antibacterial Toilet Cleaner; Wood for Good Polish, Daily clean Spray, Dilutable Oil Soap, Squirt + Mop Floor Cleaner and Wipes in almond fragrance; Hand Soaps in watermelon patch, daffodil bouquet and coconut grove; Pure Naked body wash in magnolia, olive leaf and white tea; Laundry Detergent in spring daisy fragrance; Lime + sea salt kit (hand soap, dish soap, all-purpose cleaner).

Comments: Method turned 11 in 2011, and with more than a decade under its belt, this eco-minded and design-savvy firm rolled out its first global brand campaign. The colorful and quirky Clean Happy campaign, which features a 90-second brand anthem music video, has been followed by a series of consecutive Method of the Month music video vignettes.

A shot from Method’s new Clean Happy campaign.
According to the company, the video portrays the fun side of cleaning with Method products and highlights the brand’s key product attributes. The anthem, set to the song “Young Blood” by indie rock band The Naked and Famous, includes an internationally competitive drum and bugle corps, a world champion female skateboarder skating in a giant sink, and a 40-foot light installation made up of thousands of Method hand wash bottles.

The 60-second monthly music videos set to funny original songs are inspired by and showcase Method products, including cleaning spray, hand wash, dish soap and laundry detergent.

The web videos are being distributed primarily through Facebook, YouTube and an influential, handpicked blogger network that Method dubbed “Method Mavens.” The campaign is also supported with online advertising on Facebook and YouTube, and will have global reach with Method audiences in North America, Europe and Asia.

“We are bringing our brand mission of inspiring a happy, healthy home to life with this campaign,” said Eric Ryan, Method’s co-founder and chief brand architect. “Method stands for a more enjoyable cleaning experience, and we want to show that cleaning doesn’t have to be such a chore—it can actually make you feel good and at the same time be safe for you, your family and the planet.”

Better for the planet is a key part of Method’s strategy, and along that line, last September, the firm unveiled a 100% post-consumer polyethylene bottle of which 25% is plastic collected from the North Pacific Gyre, often referred to as the Great Pacific Garbage Patch. The firm partnered with Envision Plastics, on the project, in which the duo pioneered an integrated recycling process to engineer ocean PCR plastic that is the same quality as virgin HDPE plastic. The process allows the plastic to be cleaned, unwanted contaminants removed completely, blended and then remanufactured into high quality plastic.

While novel packaging is part of the process, so are ingredients. In the fourth quarter of 2011, Method announced a partnership with Amyris, Inc., a renewable chemicals and fuels company, to generate novel molecules from Biofene, Amyris’s renewable farnesene made from plant sugars.

Under the agreement, the two will collaborate to evaluate and develop multiple ingredients such as surfactants and solvents. Upon successful development of an ingredient and incorporation into a Method product, Amyris and Method will pursue a supply agreement for Amyris to supply the ingredient to Method for use in its products.