Visual Intelligence delivers package power for our clients. They know their packaging is the ultimate brand-building tool. For example, a snack package can signal texture, temperature, aroma, and taste appeal. It must feel real in order to serve as a beacon of trust that communicates, invites, persuades, and even inspires. Yet, safe design can also be risky design. In other words, if the design is unexciting and ordinary, there is the risk the design will convey no message at all and thus the package will fail to stand out. If it’s too busy and includes every so-called important claim, the noise of the design will discourage consumer from picking up the package. Most clients tells us they want “to look like Apple’s packaging,” yet few have the courage to try.
Our clients’ packaging design is a handshake to their customers that introduces and compels action to purchase or simply reinforces the influence of their brand. For whatever reason, they pick it up and don’t let go.
Does the perfect package exist? Probably not, but that doesn’t mean you can’t create a package that perfectly delivers the best a product has to offer. Somehow the ubiquitous egg secured the coveted spot as the “perfect package.” Yet, we all know it must be handled delicately and be continuously refrigerated for extended shelf life. It doesn’t sound all that perfect after all.
The perfect packaging needs only to perfectly deliver its message to stand out from nearly everything that is, well, perfectly unremarkable. You see, packaging design unlike all other functional aspects of branding and CPG marketing, can and should deliver the entire brand position in one very small footprint. It’s the operations manager, the product development manager, the sales manager, the customer service manager, the channel manager, and the brand manager all wrapped in one cohesive marketing tool that screams, “Pick me up, hold me, turn me over, read me, and then drop me into your basket and take me home.” And, if you’re really good, the consumer will be so excited that you’ll be opened in the car.
It’s a tricky balancing act between form and function—the relentless commitment of thinking strategically and executing creatively, understanding the hierarchy of design by sacrificing the less important for the more important, and remembering you have just 2-3 seconds to capture the buyer’s attention. Sound tough? It is indeed. However, the vast majority of packaging design never takes the time to consider the power of singularity and instead creates a retail billboard that tries to be all things to all people and ends up meaning nothing to anyone. Don’t be that guy…or gal.