Managing Director of BoxMart, Joanne Offord, explains the importance of packaging that is not just functional, but also extremely eye-catching…
Creating eye-catching packaging has always been important, but it’s no longer limited purely to shelf- appeal. Today, packaging is instantly shared on social media, streamed on You Tube as it’s unpacked and blogged to a global
audience of like-minded consumers. To be successful, packaging designers and marketers need to create packaging that’s not only protective, informative and appealing, but also extremely media friendly. So where should you start on your quest for media-savvy designs that really stand-out?
BoxMart works with an array of companies, large and small, across a broad spectrum of industries. We always suggest starting with your corporate or brand identity, as if you stay true to that you can’t go far wrong! But the addition of unique elements that wow consumers and bring a smile to their face is the real secret to transforming a product from acceptable into exceptional.
So, for example, you might want to consider different box shapes rather than conventional square or rectangular packs. Not only does this create stand- out but it’s more memorable and can even become as iconic as the product or brand itself (think triangle and Toblerone). This is ideal for generating lots of ‘likes’ on social media!
One of the more outlandish shapes we’ve created was a double pentagon gift box complete with a retro geometric design and gold glitter varnish for extra bling! By developing this as a flat- pack solution, BoxMart’s structural
designers were able to reduce storage space from 84 pallets down to six. This gave a remarkable saving in the shipping and storage costs.
The addition of specialised inks, such as neon colours or glitter inks, and different materials or finishes are all great ways to transform packaging from ordinary to extraordinary. We recently created an over-sized version of Benefit Cosmetics’ iconic Hoola Box complete with metalised board to replicate its internal mirror. The promotional bloggers’ box gained such extensive coverage that customers wanted to buy a large-scale box for themselves!
But, it’s not only the appearance of packaging that is important, textured materials or other tactile effects achieved through specialty inks or finishes can also create a point of difference. TIGI required a unique sales tool, resembling a wooden beer crate. To give a lifelike wooden texture we used the latest digital technology to build layers of ink in specific areas. TIGI adored it so much they asked us to replicate the mock- up in the full production run of the crate. Customers also found it irresistible and simply had to touch the box to see if it was a real wooden crate.
The trend for digital print technology is positively shaping the future of packaging design. The challenge is for designers and marketers to fully understand the creative freedom and cost-saving potential it has to offer. Without
origination costs, digital print is far more appealing for lower quantity print runs. There is also freedom to print multiple versions within the production run at no additional cost. So, for example, versions might be created for seasonality, a particular sporting event, to market test a subtly different brand identity or to appeal to a new target market sector. Similarly, there is no origination cost if you were to completely change the print on the next production run.
The unboxing experience is something that we see as a growing trend. Printing inside the box, as we did with New & Lingwood, also adds to the sense of luxury, and creates a real sense of theatre when opened. Incorporating a magnetic closure extends a pack’s life with less risk of damage that can be caused with repeated opening and closing, whilst a gentle ‘click closure’ exemplifies the feeling of luxury. We have also created novelty packs such as a promotional gingerbread house and even created a gift box where removal of the lid triggers a surprise confetti shower!
The environment is an increasingly important consideration too, and packaging can have an extended life, either by being suitable for use as a keepsake box or by incorporating a board game printed to the inside of the box. Of course, we can and do use recyclable and recycled materials.
The possibilities are endless, the most important thing is to dream big and work with a packaging specialist who can transform your vision into a practical, cost-effective product that wows every time!
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