One vital ingredient in the branding mix is packaging, particularly for consumer goods.
In today’s Brandchannel feature, Brandspeak, Ted Mininni writes a commentary called, Advertising Is Dead, Long Live Packaging. It’s a well-reasoned argument for more attention to packaging as an integral branding element, and worth reading.
Packaging is obviously important in consumer purchasing of foods, cosmetics and health products. I’ll bet every one of us have stood in the grocery or drug store isle looking for a particular brand, only to have to ask an employee to point it out for you.. It’s embarrassing, but it’s not my fault. It could be my choice is packaged like all the rest. Or my choice might be so popular that others think they can “steal” sales by copying the familiar package. Or my favorite might just be packaged poorly.
But other product categories, from auto parts to computer printers, can be differentiated through packaging. HP – Hewlett-Packard – does a pretty good job of identifying their products through the multi-color package designs. Their HP blue, logo treatment and placement, product illustration and type selection are consistent throughout their product line. But they’re the exception.
“Packaging” for personal and business service companies is expressed through signage, décor and arrangement. It’s best known in the service industries as “trade dress”.
It is just as vital an element to service providers as packaging is for consumer goods.
So, as you develop your brand, as you build your branding platform, be sure packaging is an integrated element, not just an afterthought.