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Delivering new levels of engagement for packaging and labels

Delivering new levels of engagement for packaging and labels

Delivering new levels of engagement for packaging and labels

Infigo Software

We’re excited to introduce our first Infigo View blog post, in collaboration with the charismatic Peter Lancaster, from the award-winning Documobi. Pete has a wealth of experience in the world of web to print and brand engagement, so we’re delighted to be working with him as our first guest blogger!

In 1909, Henry Ford famously said ‘you can have any color of car you want as long as it’s black’. Mass production was born. You could now ‘keep up with the Jones’’

That was then. We now live in a different world where ‘Digital Natives’ create and drive marketing, advertising and PR. So how is Print, particularly in the form of packaging and labels, coping with the onslaught of digital media in this era of instant, always on and hyper-personalised retail experiences? Unlike brochures and newspapers, which can be replaced in part or in whole by digital media, packaging is, and will remain, absolutely necessary. You can’t wrap a burger or a new toaster in pixels, you need to protect the contents and show legally required information.

Fast forward to 2014 and Coca-Cola Australia launched the ‘Share-a-Coke’ campaign with hundreds of first names on printed labels. Mass Customisation finally arrived.

I say Customisation and not Personalisation because it was Coca-Cola that decided what names appeared, then printed them digitally in batched versions and delivered them to store. Staff then had to constantly monitor which names appeared on shelf and restock frequently. Reputedly, sales increased by 2%, which is colossal!! Such was the success and demand (especially from people whose names were not included), Coco-Cola then allowed consumers to commission their own personalised version online.

In 2015, Nutella (Ferrero) allowed 10,000 consumers per day to create their own personalised labels (with a unique proof of purchase code on pack) free of charge. Consumers were encouraged to do the following:

Once you get your own jar, take a photo of it, of you and your jar, of your kids and their jars, of the whole barangay with their jars, share a story on why you love this hazelnutty-chocolatey spread, and share on Instagram. Please tag @NutellaSEA and use the hashtag #YourNutella

In late 2015, Marmite joined the fray, offering consumers the ability to put their name on a jar and have it delivered. By the time you’d paid £4.99 for a 250g jar, a further £1 for a generic gift box and £2.99 for delivery (up to 7 working days), it would cost you £8.98. You can buy a jar for £2.27 in Aldi. Marmite has more than 1m likes on Facebook.

The Next Level

The sophistication level of personalised packaging is increasing all the time. To complement digital media, in this age of photos and videos (think Instagram, Facebook, Snapchat et al), Packaging is now embracing the idea of printing personalised photos and text on gifts such as chocolate boxes (Cadburys, Hershey’s and others). This model is tried, tested and proven on flat paper products like Greeting Cards from MoonPig, Funky Pigeon and many others. These cards will probably stay on your mantelpiece far longer than a traditional card. It says that the sender put some real effort behind the thought.

Of course, the technology behind this consumer driven revolution has to be simple, intuitive and primarily a mobile first experience. It is what the Print Industry calls ‘Web2Print’ or ‘W2P’, but very few of the current solutions in the market can truly be classed as mobile friendly. The target market for personalised printed products skews very much to the under 35s. The photos (and videos) this demographic takes will almost certainly be on their smartphones, so creating any photo-enabled product MUST be a mobile friendly experience.

Perhaps, for the benefit of the Print Industry, we should now call systems like Infigo’s Catfish and MegaEdit Pro ‘M2P’, ‘Mobile2Print’ or ‘M2Print’.

Peter Lancaster
February 5th 2017