You’ve spent countless hours getting your product packaging right. You know the market, you’ve done months of customer insight gathering, invested in top-notch photography and design and have fine tuned every letter of the messaging to get that perfect tone. You’re convinced that you have packaging that’s going to make your premium product jump off the shelf. Now it’s time to press the button and start producing the packaging by the tens of thousands.
Now, one of two different scenarios unfolds. Care to guess which one has a happy ending?
“We’ve used these guys before – great printers, great quality for the price…”
For budget reasons, you decide to skip making a fully worked up sample. The packaging producer has done good work for you in the past and you feel confident that he will not let you down.
Somehow, the 12 week delivery time has turned to 16 because a number of small issues came up along the way. Finally, there is nothing to do but wait. Will our great idea on sustainable materials really work when 10,000 units are printed and folded? Will it look as good on the shelf and in the shopping cart as it did when it was approved?
Finally, the packaging is finished and I race out to the shop to buy the product. It looks awful. The green is more turquoise than green, the material has absorbed the ink and it looks washed out. Not quite the premium look we were going for. The client says, “It’s fine. It’s not great, but it will do.”
“Let’s spend a little more to get it right before it goes away…”
12 weeks – time to deliver. We can’t wait to see the first samples. We’ve seen fully worked up mock ups with real materials and our packaging consultant has managed the process impeccably ensuring us that there will be no surprises.
Voila – products are in my hand, sent to me by a very happy and proud client, and I can’t wait to show the rest of the creative team.
THE MORAL OF THE STORY
There is no substitute for a seasoned technical packaging consultant. He or she will partner both the client and agency to make sure that the finished package is worthy of all the work that went into it. A good consultant understands all the details, both big and small: supply chain, sustainability, usability, profitability. I think production leadership is as critical to the final product as insight gathering, brand strategy, market investigation, design and copywriting.
We partner with Tracy Sutton from Root to offer our clients tailor-made packaging solutions with a special interest in technical and sustainability issues. Root work with future-focused brands to combine technical savvy with inspired creativity to make desirable, ethical and profitable packaging.
Check Tracy’s work out, she has some super credentials with brands such as Innocent drinks, StarBucks and Jamie Oliver. www.root-innovation.com.