Whether or not a person buys your food product hinges on one important thing: packaging.
“As the main (and often only) physical interaction with a Direct to Consumer brand, packaging is the most important touchpoint in the customer journey.”
For any business that sells real, tangible products, packaging design is always a crucial piece of developing a brand and resonating with customers.
Even when you’ve worked hard to establish a brand identity online and connect with customers on social media, packaging can still be a deciding factor for consumers at the moment they’re weighing their options at the store and comparing different products side-by-side.
Your product needs to stand out on the shelves. It needs to spark an emotional reaction; the consumer’s got to see it and be instantly drawn in.
After all, you have mere seconds to catch someone’s eye across the aisle.
This all begins with knowing your target audience and what makes tick.
Is it the desire to feel energized and healthy? The urge to indulge in something sweet, to reward herself after a day of hard work?
Understanding the kinds of emotions that are tied into consumer choices helps you create packaging that resonates with your target customers and build an effective marketing strategy.
Nearly twenty years ago, Oskar Blues did something bold: They put their craft beer into cans. The industry was skeptical about moving away from glass bottles.
But now, for reasons like convenience, sustainability and consumer preference, canned craft beer is becoming more and more the new norm.
This shift isn’t really about the beer. It’s about the container that holds the beer. This huge shift in consumer mindset is all about packaging: the way it looks, feels, and works within consumers’ daily lives.
The shift is happening within the wine industry, too. According to the Washington Post, “canned wine accounts for a tiny fraction of the market, still only about 1 percent. But sales of cans increased 69 percent in 2018, with volume up 47 percent over the previous year, according to Beverage Media, citing Nielsen statistics.”
It all goes to show that food and beverage products evolve overtime alongside consumer needs, cultural changes, and trends — and so do their packaging.
Reaching Millennials with food packaging
How do you attract Millennials? This is a question that is (or should be) on every producer’s mind.
Why? Millennials are the ones spending money on food and dining out.
Millennials are open to new trends in packaging and are looking for the perfect Instagram pic. They’re interested in experiences, and whether you like it or not (we do!) packaging creates an experience.
We had the opportunity to create some gorgeous canned wine packaging for KC Wineworks, who successfully launched their canned sangria in 2018. Our intention was to design a label that felt bold, fun and playful while inviting consumers to engage by using the hashtag we printed on the label: #ShowMeSangria.
Who’s your target audience? Design for them.
Of course, intentional packaging isn’t just for targeting Millennials.
Take Smoked Iguana for example.
Smoked Iguana is a small batch Barbeque sauce company located in Trenton, Missouri. We worked with this food brand on logo, illustration, and packaging design.
We wanted the label to feel clean, sophisticated and enticing to people who love to cook. Adding the metallic shine to a black, red and white color scheme created the exact feel we were going for.
Our work with Maruhon Sesame Oil was centered around bringing this Japanese product to American consumers.
One of the most significant steps a company can take is entering into a foreign market. If it’s going to be successful, it requires research and a clear strategy.
Armed with a thorough understanding of Maruhon’s goals, Bauerhaus then crafted a market research survey. It was distributed to food bloggers as well as a random audience of consumers. The results produced valuable information on how to proceed with a marketing strategy for the brand.
Packaging gives you the opportunity to connect with your audience in new and exciting ways. It should never be an afterthought! Packaging contributes to the experience your customer has with your product and, ultimately, influences their decision to buy.