While food packaging is meant to protect the product you’re putting out, it’s also meant to attract ready and willing buyers. You want aesthetically pleasing packaging and that sells itself. To do this, you need a strong brand identity. You need packaging that properly communicates your brand and your brand’s values. It needs to demonstrate what your product is all about and be relevant and engaging to your target market. The branding of your food is essentially the driving force to the success or failure of your product. It can be a key factor in whether or not you get retail buyers to purchase your product.
1. Understand Your Brand Identity
First and foremost, you need to understand your brand’s identity. Your brand’s packaging is the first thing a prospective customer interacts with. It’s their introduction to your brand. Because of this, you need it to create a good first impression. It needs to demonstrate what your brand is and what your company is all about. When designing your food packaging, you want to start with a design that conveys what your brand is all about.
You want to look at your brand and compare it to the rest of the marketplace. Think about your unique value proposition. What makes your brand different from the rest of the marketplace? Think about your target customer. These questions will lead to your branding success. Having the answers to all of the important questions can help you design packaging that resonates with your audience. You want your food packaging to align with your brand’s objectives, goals, and values. You want the packaging to showcase what your brand message is, and how you want to position your products in the marketplace.
2. Form and Function
The packaging of your food products will showcase the aesthetics of your brand. However, it will also play a critical role in preserving your food and protecting it. Thus, you need to establish packaging that keeps your product well protected such as folded plastic cartons. You want your food to arrive fresh. Thus, the function needs to be a priority. You cannot sacrifice function for aesthetics. Any grocer that you sell to, will send you an invoice for damaged products they’ve received. To minimize these issues, create strong and functional product packaging.
You want the packaging to also carry a message of the features that the buyer is going to get. Keep in mind, consumers are constantly being engaged. Thus, you only have a few seconds to capture their attention and retain it. You’re competing with hundreds of other brands in the same aisle. Thus, you need to ensure that you are doing it quickly and effectively.
3. Key Questions About Packaging
You should look to ask yourself some questions the next time you are about to launch a new product.
One of the first things you need to focus on is the packaging materials that you will be using. Think about what materials make the most sense. Think about preserving your product. What is going to keep your product as fresh as possible? Think about your brand and how you want to position it from an Eco-friendly standpoint. Are the packaging materials you are using consistent with your Eco-friendly message?
You also want to factor in the construction of the packaging. You want to think about whether flexibility or rigid construction would work best. How much space do you need for brand messaging? Will your product be standing up well on store shelves? Is your brand a Direct To Consumer brand so you don’t have to worry about retail shelves?
– Secondary Packaging
Another thing that you need to consider is how well your product can be case-packed for shipping to retailers. This can contribute to your cost of goods sold if not carefully considered before the design process is complete.
– Storage and Distribution
You need to think about how much it’s going to cost to distribute your products to retailers. How long can it be stored? This will be essential if your product doesn’t have a long shelf life.
– Shelf Life
You need to factor in the time it will take to get your product from your manufacturing center to the customer.
You need to think about all of the information that needs to be accurately displayed on your packaging.
– Design Considerations
You need to factor in a lot of other design considerations that can impact how well your food stands out in the marketplace.
– Materials Will Drive Costs
As mentioned, you will have a lot of considerations to make when it comes to designing the right packaging. The materials and everything else will contribute to the total cost of your end product.
Key Cost Drivers
As mentioned, you need to think about the material makeup of your packaging. You will find the more traditional materials include glass, aluminum, plastic, and paper. There have been plenty of advancements in the space with more Eco-friendly materials. If you decide to go the green route, GreenBlue can be an incredible resource to use.
Once you have the packaging design, you are going to have the majority of the costs embedded into the packaging. Only around 20% of the excess cost occurs in the actual manufacturing stages of your product design. Because of this, the design process will present numerous opportunities for you to maximize cost savings in your packaging. Spend enough time, energy, and resource on this and you should be able to secure the best possible price on your packaging.
3. Printing and Production
You can make some tradeoffs when it comes to producing your product’s packaging. However, you need to be aware of the implications that come with the tradeoffs.
One of the best ways to maximize savings long-term is by automating the packaging process. However, this will mean you have to spend more during the initial stages. After all, you’ll need to invest in a machine, but you can save a lot on labor over the lifetime of the machine. You may even get more retailers to purchase your product because of the consistency of your packaging.
As you can see, the choices you make about your food packaging can be significant. Avoid rushing the process and ensure that you are investing heavily into the research and development of it to get it right.