In the real estate game, the key to success is location, location, location. In designing packaging, a similar rule applies. The location of where and how your product will be merchandised is also important.
In our work with Lone Star Growers Texas on their Winter Sweetz brand (see my Work tab for the case study), retail visits in their key markets revealed that 50% of the time, their grapefruit brands were merchandised in ‘portrait’ and 50% of the time, they were merchandised in ‘landscape’. Since most bags were graphically designed for portrait, one way for my client to stand out and grab more shelf space was to design their new packaging for landscape. This gave us more room to convey the brand story and encourage produce managers to merchandise their bag in a different way.
Visiting stores and understanding where and how your product is merchandised is really important to packaging design.
With this in mind, today we look at La Colombe cold press coffee. This is an established brand with a range of products, from cafes to coffee beans and more. So it becomes more complicated, when you have a brand across many channels, to design effective packaging.
This is their coffee in the chilled department where the emerging category of Cold Press coffee is growing. What do you notice about this pack in this merchandising environment? Here is what stands out for me.
1. 1/2 the can is taken up with the brand and brand image. 1/2 the can! That’s a big commitment of space and most of that is white space.
2. Given 50% of the can has now been used up, key ‘buy me’ messages have been relegated to small type or non-impactful placement. For example, look at the very bottom of the can – see the 120 calories? For some buyers, this is important so would have had more impact at the top of the can where it could be seen.
3. Flavour is repeated twice – and both times in a very small, hard to read size.
4. And the statement, “Real coffee drink” has been relegated as a side bar story. Without fully diving into their competition, if being made with real coffee differentiates them from competitors, then this statement should be placed in a more visible area and be made bigger as is a key ‘buy me’ message.
Today’s lesson: Always know how/where your product will be merchandised before you start designing a brand and packaging. Knowing this in advance will help you create a design and pack that optimises its location, location, location and contributes to driving sales.