Shelf Wars

Blog | by Norman Kay | 05.13.2020

Raising a family, working, commuting, exercising, resting, eating, and sleeping absorb the available time and energy to purchase anything other than basics.

We are pressured into making impulsive choices at retail.

And, an increasing percentage of the population routinely search, select and buy online. Yet most online shoppers also appreciate or crave the experiential – the ‘touch n feel’ that a store provides.

Let’s talk about the consumer experience for packaged goods.

In store, our sensory filters are glutted with information. Less gets through, and it takes an extraordinary visual or other sensory spark to break through the clutter and seize our attention. With approximately 4 seconds to capture the consumers’ eye, the package must have phenomenal impact, clearly triggering brand recognition, while providing instant engagement.

If not – No notice, no grasp, no buy, no sale – poof.

The package designer must deal with overcrowded shelves, a throng of branded options, private labeling by the retailer, an indistinguishable sea of SKUs, substitute categories, and price pressure.

Marketers invest significant time and funds developing their brand statement; heritage, authenticity, name, logo, structure, narrative, tone, the overall persona, plus abundantly implied benefits.

Advertising, PR, traditional & social media have conveyed that message: buy me, take me home, improve your life… at nauseum.

At shelf the package has to anchor the brand team’s vision, amplify that margin of influence, and arouse a decisive argument for the brand. It must illuminate the company’s depth of conviction regarding the unique attributes it places on its product.

So….how do we maximize packaging’s impact, thereby retaining loyalty and persuading transition and cross-over from the surrounding competition?

Where’s the magic?

How do we close the deal – all within that synapse?

It’s accomplished by creating emotional, evocative connections with the consumer.

  • Stimulating taste via clean design.
  • Leading with the strength of the Mark.
  • Engaging the eye: color, typography, photography, neoteric shape & structure, and selecting from a myriad of extraordinary decorative techniques.
  • Igniting touch with material and texture that echo the brand’s fiber.
  • Provoking scent with micro-encapsulated coatings.
  • Technology brings light, sound and movement into the equation for repurposing and single edition keepsakes.
  • Embedding QR and RFI coding to initiate mobile apps, leveraging the package’s reach and gathering data.

All the pieces that influence our senses must be orchestrated in harmony.

With the growth of online purchasing, transparency, and the effects of social media, the impact of packaging on the consumer experience is essential to supporting the claims and promises of the brand

Thanks for visiting with us today!

Norman Kay, CEO

IBC Shell Packaging

International Business Communications, Inc.