First impressions matter--a lot! That's why packaging in marketing can make such a difference for your overall brand. A package that doesn't wow its recipient with its look is just a package.
It might even sit on a desk or a kitchen counter unnoticed without anyone being curious about what's inside.
What is packing something even for, if it's only to be covered or boxed? A great package needs to announce itself. And just how it does so is the subject of this article.
So, keep reading to discover the amazing potential of packages!
Know Your Brand
A brand is something that captures the essence of a product, or group of products, to the extent that people know and recognize it and have developed their own unique ways of defining it.
Yet a brand is eminently recognizable due to the many tools used in reinforcing its existence and positive qualities. A business must cultivate a brand and reimagine it in ways that make it fit its era.
Probably the most familiar and memorable aspect of a brand is its logo. In some cases, though it's a color scheme. When the two work in sync, especially when people consider it a household word, the brand has put down roots.
But like a flourishing plant, a brand must be tended by its owners and creators as well as allowed to draw nourishment from its environment--meaning, it must absorb cultural inputs.
How Effective Packaging in Marketing Builds Your Brand
Along with telling and reinforcing its story, a brand's "caretakers" need to give it exposure and sensory appeal. We all have branded trinkets, caps, or tee shirts that we picked up at trade shows or public events.
But another major avenue for branding is communication from the company that owns it. For example, letterhead with a splashy logo and color scheme is sure to garner more attention than a tiny logo on otherwise black and white paper.
And any merchandise ordered from a retailer should shout their brand all over the packaging. So, now we'll discuss the importance of packaging as a significant component of branding.
A lot of companies have caught on to the idea of splashy letterhead. What about packaging, though? Even the most humdrum letter arriving from a law office should come in an envelope that engages and energizes its recipient.
Example 1: College Recruiting
And a college recruitment office would be foolish not to follow an on-campus interview with a desirable student prospect with a package containing a couple of branded items--say a shirt and a coffee mug.
And that college should go all out in packaging these fairly inexpensive items (that, themselves, brand the college) by having them packed along with additional brochures in a brightly-colored box in the college colors.
Example 2: A Non-Profit
In some cases, an envelope will be the first message the recipient reads about its sender. For example, what might a major healthcare facility soliciting donations have on its envelope?
We might recommend an image in the lower-left front corner of the envelope featuring a lab-coated person's torso leaning over that of a young child in a bed. On the envelope flap would be this type of statement:
"Little Ashley just wants to get back to school. Scenes like the one on the front of this envelope should not end in tragedy."
Example 3: Retailer
The best and most consistent package-based branding campaigns have to be those of Apple Computer. Computers are important products for their users. Apple makes sure they're fun products, too.
All parts that come packed with a computer (and there are fewer and fewer of them) come individually packaged in branded bags or boxes inside a larger branded box. The color scheme is consistently gray on white, with a judicious number of images.
Opening or unwrapping each part reminds the consumer of the care that was put into the packaging, and this immediately evokes the notion of "quality product." The packaging isn't hard to reassemble for transport, either.
So the branding experience can be rekindled if the computer's owner moves--by which point that person might already be thinking it's time to purchase a new computer.
What Are the Components of a Stellar Package?
Depending on the size and content of a package, any combination of the following materials might be used--and branded:
- Tyvek envelopes in various sizes and colors
- Illustrated, heavy paper presentation folders
- Printed cardboard boxes
- Shipping bags
- Corrugated print mailers
- Cardboard inserts or small boxes
- Gift card holders
- Tissue paper
- Packing tape
- Address labels
- Wrapping paper
- Hangtags (for clothing)
- Discount cards
- Header cards
You can see that each of these materials or items, in and of itself, constitutes an invitation into the life of your brand. It says, "Remember me." When combined with other items, you'll have a fun, enjoyable, and memorable customer experience.
Where Can I Get Branded Packaging Materials?
There are more companies now offering customized products of various types every day--ranging from practical items such as desk accessories to ones like customized chocolate) for pure enjoyment to fun (but disposable) packaging materials.
A web search for "customized items" or "promotional items" will pull up dozens of businesses that will customize anything from pencils to high-end coolers.
If you're looking for letterhead, most printing businesses can take care of this. And if you're looking for branded packaging supplies, these too are readily available by searching for "custom packaging supplies."
Go ahead--give it a try!
So What Does Retail Packaging Mean?
We hope we've convinced you about the many benefits of packaging in marketing materials. We hope you understand better what a difference creating a package experience, as opposed to just shipping a package, can be.
The next time you receive a package or large envelope, examine it carefully starting with the sealed box. What (if anything) gives a first impression of the brand inside? What says, "Open me"?
Then look inside and observe how the contents are wrapped. A well-packaged item is wrapped in branded tissue paper or contained in small, branded boxes. The way something is packed can make opening it a joyful experience.
Especially if it's something you've been anticipating.
So, if we can help you with any branded packaging supplies you might need, let us know. We're waiting to hear from you!