In this Q&A, you’ll hear from Brian McGrath Davis, co-founder & co-CEO of Parable, a braincare company. Brian details the difference between popping nootropics and proactive braincare. Plus, he shares how Parable plans to stand out in the billion-dollar supplement market.
Can you tell us about what you’re working on at Parable?
Brian McGrath Davis: Parable is a science-backed braincare company. Our goal is to demystify brain health and make everyday braincare a simple and effective part of the wellness journey.
Our flagship product, Daily™, is a powdered supplement developed by neuroscientists for long-term brain health. With a powdered oat milk base, it blends easily with coffee, tea, smoothies, and other beverages.
Caring for the brain itself is a novel approach. Daily™’s formulation is specially targeted to care for the whole brain—supporting cognitive, mental, and neural health—whereas the vast majority of brain health supplements address the symptoms of a neglected brain (like fogginess, forgetfulness, and fatigue) and ignore the brain’s foundational needs.
The trend in nootropics is to treat the brain like trying to amp up a computer rather than as a fragile and complex organ that needs daily support and nourishment. Daily™ provides support at the source.
How did you come up with the idea? What key insight led you to pursue this opportunity?
BMD: Study after study shows that brain health is a top concern for people at every age. Everyone wants a healthy brain, but few of us actually know how to care for them — we know more about skincare and haircare than braincare.
The disparity between interest and education inspired us to fill the gap by creating a brand that stands for consumer brain health.
We created Parable to demystify a healthy brain, but what we’re really up to is helping people human well. This thing we’re all doing as humans is hard. We believe that the greatest good we can do in the world is to help one another with the art of being human.
A healthy brain thinks clearly, manages stress, and processes strong emotions. In short, it helps us human well.
How did you turn your idea into a company?
BMD: It was important for co-founder Cristina Poindexter and I to ground the business in scientific efficacy. Neither of us is a scientist or physician, so we partnered with the foremost nutritional neuroscientists — the ones who have quite literally written the studies and the books on brain nutrition.
We worked closely with them over several months to formulate a product that could be easily added to a morning routine, making the adoption of braincare something both simple and effective.
At the same time, we invested early in our brand. We have a new message to tell, one that isn’t yet a central part of the wider wellness dialogue. So, a great deal of work needed to go into everything that wasn’t the supplement — especially content and education. Plus, our mission goes well beyond selling just supplements.
All told, we spent nearly two years in stealth developing the product and building the brand.
How big can this get? What’s the addressable market and how do you go about capturing it?
BMD: Well, everyone has a brain!
The global brain health supplements market is about $8B, but more specifically, we see our path as a decidedly new and emergent category: braincare. Many of our customers tell us that they never thought about taking care of their brain before, so the size of the opportunity goes well beyond the designated market size of brain health supplements.
For now, our focus is developing our direct-to-consumer channel, but we expect to grow the business beyond DTC in the future.
Who is the core customer? How are you acquiring customers? And how will you grow the customer base?
BMD: We set out to make braincare simple and effective for as many people as possible. That said, the average brain begins to atrophy around age 30, so we designed Daily™ with the midlife adult in mind. This is a period of life when braincare is essential.
Looking at your road map, what are some of the milestones you’re targeting over the next 3-6 months?
BMD: We’re still very much in our launch phase and will be for a few more months. However, we’ve also just kicked off fundraising for our seed round, so we also expect to be meeting with prospective investors for the next few months.
Related content from Fitt Insider: Issue No. 171: The State of Supplements
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