Every year thousands of new products fail to make it big. The rationale is simple and one that is starting to gain more attention. Most consumers don't have the time or the inclination to analyze the pros and cons of the products they see in online catalogs or departmental stores. They use the product's packaging to make that decision for them.
So, what does your packaging say about you? How does it make you different from the rest? Here are 3 tips to keep in mind when designing your product packaging for it to be a winning product.
Safety and Hygiene
Keeping in mind legal requirements and safety guidelines is a sign of a reputed company. A great packaging design ensures:
- Hygienic standards abide by food safety regulations
- Prevents product damage during transportation and inclement weather
- Child safety by doing away with small parts and sharp edges
One good example is Panera’s "Food You Can Trust" initiative where they worked with roost designs to reduce ink coverage and use of colors. They aimed to achieve a packaging design that is clean and minimal, yet functional in terms of food hygiene and freshness.
Innovative packaging strengthens a company's logo, message or tagline. These features reinforce a brand by increasing consumer recognition in marketing forms such as stores, billboards, flyers and mobile platforms. Brand identity emphasizes a story and creates an emotional connection between a company and its customers. It is always present, both subconsciously and consciously.
In the case of Under Armor, as opposed to selling an image or a lifestyle, they market its garments as problem solvers. Whether it's moisture wicking to keep you feeling fresh and dry, or compression garments to reduce inflammation, Under Armor unique brand identity helped it to distinguish itself from rivals such as Nike. The company reported sales growth by more than 20% regionally, and an incredible 65% internationally.
Eco- Friendly Options
Nothing sets a company apart from its competition then its commitment to the environment. 52 percent of consumers make purchase decisions partially based on the packaging that shows a positive social or environmental impact. Investing in compostable, biodegradable or recyclable packaging is a creative way to be green as well as stand out from the crowd.
One such company is Seventh Generation, which banks more than $200 million in sales. They sell a line of products including biodegradable, vegetable-based cleaning products, chlorine- free tampons, and natural lotion baby wipes. It ranked first amongst 84 companies considered best for the environment.
Nowhere else is the power of packaging more obvious than in the minimalist designs of Apple, a reflection of the philosophy of its founder, Steve Jobs. Walter Issacson's biography of Jobs quotes Apple's Jonathan Ive: "Steve and I spend a lot of time on the packaging," said Ive. "I love the process of unpacking something. You design a ritual of unpacking to make the product feel special. Packaging can be theater, it can create a story."
Creative packaging does not always require great designing or technical skills. Often, innovative ideas are the product of passion and personal style. Packaging design needs to address clientele requirements, reflect the latest industry trends, and not compromise the product you are selling. All it takes is a little bit of brainstorming to help you come up with a packaging design, which sets your business apart from the competition.