May 30

Advertising & packaging principles

Posted by Packaging Sense in Advertising | Design | Typography | Uncategorized

Advertising Advice

  • • Typography in advertising:
  • – avoid reverse type
  • – avoid script
  • – avoid too long lines
  • – avoid trendy typefaces
  • – avoid fat typo if message is light
  • • Most of the consumers will only see picture + headline + brand and do not read body copy.
  • • A poster should have maximum 3 elements (2 would be even better).
  • • Important: word and picture should not say the same, but achieve interest thanks to tension/intrigue/surprise, i.e. a dynamic situation.
  • • Don’t do the expected!
  • • Advertising only works when the consumer discovers something relevant.
  • • Say the same thing over and over again… just in a different way.
  • • In an advertisement always show the package with imagination.
  • • A poster has no time to explain itself.
  • • If you establish a strong emotional link between the brand and the consumer:
  • • you’re increasing the brand loyalty;
  • • the consumer is willing to pay a premium price.
  • • Advertising style is an essential element of brand personality. It has to be consistent.
  • • Advertising has to be ‘entertaining’ because the public expects it to be.
  • • Advertising is not about ‘sending messages’, but ‘establishing contacts’.
  • • No two markets are the same, but lifestyles are the same in all markets.
  • • Pauses are illusions… it makes your mind imagine things that give you a fuller/richer message.
  • • Big ideas are born as good ideas and then grown into big ideas by working on and nurturing them over a period of time.
  • • A brand manager should not be judged on how much he changes advertising or packaging, but on how much he improves and develops the existing ones!
  • • True originality is a risk… take it!
  • • A strong brand can make a product literally taste better than another.
  • • A strong brand carries with it added values in the consumer’s mind.


Packaging Advice

  • • Consider packaging as the best communication medium.
  • • Design for the consumer first, for the legal, technical and other people second.
  • • Watch out for wrong savings! A white shipper is great, selling graphics (2-4 colours) cost very little more than a one-colour brown box.
  • • Don’t forget the tactile role of packaging.
  • • Think total packaging, i.e. retail package plus display and shipper.
  • • Big branding is a must. It is important to be seen.
  • • Reduce the amount of text!
  • • Always question if you have the best solution. What was best yesterday may not be good enough today.
  • • Update continuously.
  • • Packaging is teamwork (designer, product manager, copywriter, purchasing, production/technical/legal people).
  • • The cheapest solution seldom adds value.
  • • Exploit modern technical possibilities and print in seams, under seams, close to photocells, etc. Don’t take a ‘no’ for a ‘no’ from your technical advisor; there is a difference between what a package engineer wants and what a consumer would like to see or not.
  • • Strive for less colours. Practically everything can be printed in 4 colours.
  • • Try to switch from rotogravure to flexography to save money.
  • • Improve the intensity/strength of the inks used for brand colours. It increases impact. The Pantone number should be considered as the reference, not necessarily the ultimate.
  • • Interpret the legislation more creatively. We are often more driven by what we can’t do rather than what could be done. Bring technical and marketing people together at the conceptual stage of a project in order to avoid a “no, it can’t be done” later on.
  • • Use only the best opening device (tearstrip or thumb-press). Always indicate how to easily open/cut a sachet.
  • • Start with the ‘big one’ on the front panel and then design the rest in order of importance (information hierarchy is a must).
  • • Analyze if a ‘portrait’ design would not be better than a ‘landscape’ or the opposite.
  • • Embossing of brands or illustrations are today achieved without extra costs on cardboard.
  • • Trays and shippers are today too technically- and cost-driven. Make them advertising-driven.
  • • We do not work enough with ‘loaded words’, i.e. action oriented texts. Don’t just print statements! Think communication, not just information.
  • • The tactile role of packaging materials is important. Does your package ‘feel’ good?
  • • We must be more pro-active in package development to avoid the need for more than 4 approval visas (marketing, trademark, legal, technical) before a package goes to print.
  • • Collect ‘best in category’ packages as inspiration. You learn from the masters (bench-marking).


The 5 myths in Advertising and Packaging

1st myth The eye pattern from top left to low right. It’s the IDEA that decides the layout

2nd myth Visual impact should be EMOTIONAL impact. The IDEA will dictate the impact. Headline must intrigue and captivate

3rd myth Mnemonics or mnemonic devices. A gimmick is not a true memory trigger. True ones are Ronald McDonald, the Lilac Cow, etc. The mnemonic must involve you. Quality of message is superior to frequency.

4th myth Don’t print your copy strategy like a book title. A headline must be an intrigue between text and picture. A headline should invite the reader to draw his own conclusion.

5th myth Don’t let typography be a design tool. It is a communication tool. Always columns. Avoid trendy typefaces. NEVER negative copy!


A small comparison

Always set out to reduce the word count in any commercial presented to you; The copy on the front panel should only have key words!
Be an absolute maniac about imaginative and inspired casting; Food styling is like God, in the details;
If you have something you can dramatically demonstrate, use it to its full effect; Exaggerate and highlight product taste, structure or advantage
Never allow a slice-of-life commercial to become a slice-of-non-life; Copy on back: consumer language is superior to producer language!
Make each commercial in a campaign be an evolution of it, not just a mirror image of the last commercial. Rejuvenate your pack design constantly!

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