Today’s packaging is evolving to become uniquely appealing to sensory cues. Consumers react more quickly to images than to text according to a recent consumer report. Other studies which track eye movement have found that very few words are actually interpreted while shopping, meaning sensory appeal is spurring unconscious buying. This in turn leads designers to think about new, innovative ways to capture attention, stir emotions and sell product via packaging.
Packaging Then & Now
Post World War II consumers embraced every imaginable form of packaged foods, beverages and cleaning products. Longer shelf life became crucial as manufacturing became more centralized. Goods traveled longer distances to reach retailers and then sat for months on store shelves until the lady of the household sauntered by. Although great care and respect went into developing packaging, it was primarily designed to meet functional requirements and clearly communicate the product’s brand. Every few years, consumer packaged goods (CPG) companies would tweak their product’s formulation or their packaging and splash copy on the package proclaiming “New & Improved!” or “New Packaging!”.
Present-day packaging goes beyond perfunctory changes to capture the attention of females alone; for today’s diverse consumer, package design must be a bridge between the brand and the consumer.
As a child, do you remember eating a frozen treat and discovering a joke on the stick or unwrapping a piece of chewing gum and finding something written on the inside of the wrapper? The goal with all these campaigns was to drive engagement and create emotions beyond the physical product itself. Ivie Asia recently created interactive kid’s meal buckets and found great successes, both in Children’s Meal Buckets for Chinese New Year and in a fictional trip from farm to table. Brands across the world are paying special attention to exclusive packaging design opportunities because of the way they impact consumer perceptions. Done correctly, engaging consumers and entertaining them translates to better sales.
What’s Now, What’s Next?
Other innovative retailers and fast moving consumer goods (FMCG) companies have created beverages with peelable labels that look like a fruit skin, tennis shoes in a pocket of air – playing off the name of the shoe – and waterproof watches that come in a pouch of water.
When it comes to packaging, some designs come and go, while others have found longevity. So whether you’re looking for a short-term campaign to promote a limited-time event, or investigating ways to make a lasting connection with your customers, packaging presentation is a great place to start.
To discuss how your brand can better engage and entertain through packaging, contact firstname.lastname@example.org