The best salespeople are those who can quickly and easily communicate an idea or message that hooks the buyer. They don't need to deceive or coherse; they let the message do it's psychological work and the buyer does the rest.
The best packaging does the exact same thing. Packaging can communicate so many things about a product without speaking a word: This product is...fun, helpful, refined, youthful, irreverant, expensive, affordable, funny, sporty, or anything else you're hoping to convey about your product.
Developing packaging that communicates the message you want without speaking a word to your target customers takes some planning and consideration. Here are a few ideas and tactics you can try out as you hone and improve your company's 'silent salesman'!
1. Develop Packaging that Triggers Emotional Engagement
Consumers act when a brand makes them feel something. Package structure, imagery, color, and fonts work synergistically to appeal to consumers. But what we really need to do is to evoke positive emotions, memories, and personal context in a conscious and subconscious manner. The question is: What appeals to consumers on an emotional level, and where does that emotion come from? Having an understanding of these key questions about your target audience will help you develop packaging that triggers an emotional response.
2. Develop Packaging that Engages the Senses
Developing packaging that is visually interesting, has a unique and appealing to the touch, or incorporates fragrances can help appeal to buyers, depending on the product, target customer, and market. This is especially true for childeren's products. Children respond to emotional cues more than adults do. Yet it’s more challenging to reach kids than adults when they’re easily distracted by limitless options. Engaging their senses and offering tactile sensations encourages kids’ interaction with packaging at a deeper level when they’re confronted by a plethora of busily packaged products in toy aisles.
3. Tell Your Brand's Story with Packaging
Your packaging will be able to sell more convinsingly and efficiently if people understand your brand's story. Packaging that tells a story can create a significant amount of new interest in a new product, as well as in a venerable brand where there is a desire to increase brand awareness and the size of the company's geographic scope of coverage.
Not only can new packaging teach current customers something interesting about your brand, but it can also improve the likelihood that new customers will decide to try what you're selling.
Humans are impacted significantly by what they see, and new packaging may not only appeal to a customer's emotions, but a story can also build trust and appreciation in your brand and products.
4. Using Visual Zones
According to Packaging Gateway, packaging as a marketing tool works best when it is designed around the visual zones within all retail environments. These can be defined by proximity to the product:
- The recognition zone begins at 12 feet away. This is the initial zone in which to gain the consumer's attention, through the use of bright colours or familiar icons. This can be the initial entrance into a specific aisle or area of the supermarket. Getting the shopper's attention with bright bold colours and visual display is the objective here.
- The buy zone begins at three feet away. This is the zone in which the consumer is getting closer to the product. Package shape and style combined with colour and unique graphics now come into play
- The curiosity zone begins at one foot away. This is the zone in which, hopefully, the consumer is drawn to the product and is now holding it in their hands for closer inspection. This is also the time when the consumer is looking for specific information, including ingredient statements or more details regarding the product.
Each zone plays a critical role in getting your product into the hands of the consumer and ultimately into the shopping cart. More and more companies are designing their packaging to respond to the various visual zones.
5. Packaging Can Facilitate a Purchase Decision
Many customers are now looking for products that reflect a social conciousness. For example, packaging could convey that a product is vegan, glueten free, made in america, sweatshop free, made from recyled materials, locally sourced, contains no GMOs, and much more.
This information can help to sell the product because it allows potential customers to quickly obtain the information that may differentiare your product from others. This type of information contained on a package may propel the reader to buy the product without ever having to speak to a store clerk.
6. Keeping The Message Simple
While the last point about providing certain information that differentiates your product is helpful, it should be used discerningly. Relish Marketing notes that,
"It’s very tempting to want to pack everything there is to know about your brand onto the back or inside of your packaging; after all, you want your consumers to absorb the passion you have for it and this may be your only chance!
However, in reality, that can often be counter-productive. Overloading the pack with information will just leave the consumer confused and even sometimes a little irritated that there’s so much to wade through just to find the cooking instructions, for example.
Keeping things clean and streamlined with a focus on branding is often a better route than trying to fit sales copy on your packaging! Let the messanging that you DO have on your packaging stand out and do the heavy lifting.
Attract New Customers With Custom Packaging
Are you interested in updating your company's product packaging? Are you interested in methods that are easy to adopt and offer additional benefits for branding and marketing? Learn the benefits of working with Howard Packaging for your packaging. Find out what Howard Packaging can do for your business. Request a Free Catalog and Sample Kit Today!