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Defining the Sweetspot



Mars Petcare is a business with multifaceted needs.

The FMCG petfood market is fast moving, and consumers expectations are developing at a rapid pace. It was clear that Mars were losing out on revenue and market share because of their lack of the intelligent, personalised experiences that consumers now expect as standard. The owner of several major pet food brands, Mars knew that it needed to evolve into providing services in addition to manufacturing physical products - services that would create meaningful connections with existing and new customers, opening up new revenue streams and access to a wealth of mission-critical data and insights.

Pet wellness is a universal, pervasive pain point for pet parents. They are often reliant on trial and error even when working with vets to resolve problems and (in spite of their great love for their pets) there is a surprising and serious lack of education around vital, preventative activities. How could Mars alleviate this pain, greatly enhance the wellbeing of pets and, in doing so, create those meaningful, lasting connections with its customers? How would we help Mars build empathy?

The size of the opportunity in this still-emerging sector amounted to hundreds of millions of dollars across gut, skin, oral, mobility and more, and Mars had already begun developing a home test kit and drafting early concepts for a Miome brand.

But how would a full end-to-end health testing service work? How would it generate revenue and collect data? How might it become a companion to having a pet, a service so integrated into home life that it gets relied upon and enjoyed every day?

Meanwhile, in Mars’ product development labs, it had also created an API and image processing tool, and wondered whether this system might form part of the quest for a valuable consumer-facing proposition.

With Mars’ vision, big questions, API lab tool and test kit concept laid out before us, the Candyspace team focused on designing and building a rapid proof of concept (MVP), which would define the sweetspot where their customers’ demands aligned with their business needs, and where real value could be delivered to both sides of the equation.







• Establish Mars as a trusted expert in pet care

• Devise a new service-driven proposition
• Generate new revenue streams
• Gather data and actionable insights
• Create deep, long-term connections with customers





• Enhance the wellbeing of my pet

• Empower me with knowledge, reducing my anxiety and guesswork
• Help me prevent problems


miome sweetspot

Research and Discovery




Understanding the pet health market through primary research


Our defining of the sweetspot began with a need to understand the problem space and the actors within it: Mars, its competitors, vets and pet parents. Making economical use of time, we ingested Mars’ existing, great-quality market research to look for pain points, structural breakages and opportunities through our own Candyspace lens, and to learn as much as possible about the world of pet care before talking to pet parents.

It was clear that this emerging market presented Mars with the opportunity to establish itself as the class leader. In order to ensure we created something unique and of substance, we conducted a review of competitors and comparators. We performed detailed reviews of their strengths and weaknesses, making note of what not to do, and saving inspiration for later.

Highlights from our findings included:

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