Tis the season of packages..just ask UPS, the United States Postal Service and FedEx. If I could sing I would break into song: “brown paper packages tied up with strings, these are a few of my favorite things.”
But what about packaging your product or service offering? Are you delivering the complete package?
Consider the following for your business:
- Do you deliver a physical product?
- Are you delivering a service?
Either way, you may be missing out on an opportunity to tie your product or service up in a bow – literally and figuratively.
Now is THE PERFECT time to take note of what retailers do so effectively with their packaging. Learn from their ideas to help your business improve the delivery of your product or service. There are many creative and cost-effective ways to deliver the complete package to your customers or clients.
- Brooks running shoes: Fabulous packaging! Love how they leverage product ‘real estate’ including inside the shoe on the heel of each sneaker to convey their message (Carpe Diem, Run Happy messages in my pair). While every pair of sneakers comes in a box, Brooks has fully leveraged the entire box to build and reinforce their brand. A message in the interior of the top of the box, a run happy sticker on the corner, and the box itself has favorite running routes in Seattle that make up the design of the box cover.
Brooks has effectively converted their required packaging for shoes (the good ol’ mundane shoe box) into an effective marketing element. They have put creative thinking into the shoe box to tell more of their story and to build their brand. Smart. Clever. Well-done!
- Vineyard Vines: Two guys quit their corporate jobs to start this company in Martha’s Vineyard. You may or may not care about their story, but they effectively tell their story in their catalogs and in the interior flap of their shipping box: Very smart to convert the shipping box into an opportunity to tell their story. They need to have a shipping box anyway so why not make it a vehicle to build the brand!
Below is one of Vineyard Vines’ gift boxes. The boxes are of high quality (they should be to support their brand) and the interior of their apparel boxes are brightly colored and convey their tagline: Every Day Should Feel This Good. Note the tissue paper and sticker. The packing slip is accompanied with a larger signature whale sticker for the Thule or car. Brilliant way to increase awareness of their brand.
So you may now be saying, geez, these examples are big-time retailers. She wants me to learn from them and their big marketing budgets? Humor me and keep reading. Packaging does not need to be extravagant.
- Rose & Dove Specialty Gift Shop: a fabulous gift shop located in North Andover, MA. Kellee Twadelle, the proprietor, established her packaging signature style years ago and has stuck with it as it is efficient, highly recognizable, simple and festive. As shown below, the packaging is a branded brown paper bag in many different sizes – she leverages ribbons and tissue paper for the event, season or holiday (e.g., Mother’s Day) for a ready to give gift, eliminating the need to gift wrap at home for no additional cost. Below is an example of her signature packaging:
Being a gift shop, some sort of packaging is expected. Rose & Dove delivers the complete package while managing packaging expenses.
What can you learn from these 3 examples to help you deliver the complete package in 2017? As you scramble to buy and wrap gifts, take note. B to B can learn from what B to C companies are doing when it comes to packaging! Take note as the UPS or FedEx delivery person comes! Think about how and where you can improve your packaging of your product or service.
As you work on your 2017 marketing plan ( you are working on it, right?) think about opportunities to incorporate your messaging into your packaging including the following:
- Does your packaging have space that could include key aspects of your brand’s message? Look at the exterior and interior packaging – are there blank/unused areas?
- Could a simple sticker with a message help? (See above and the Run Happy message on the Brooks shoe box)
- What accompanies your product or service that could be better branded? Think packing slips, installation instructions and invoices. Does the wording and visuals really represent your company’s values and beliefs?
As you wrap up the year and plan for 2017, shift your mindset. To deliver the complete package to your customers, stop thinking of packaging as an expense; view packaging as an integral part of your marketing investment to build your brand and separate you from your competition.