11 September 2012

Opinion Piece - What's In The Box

What's In The Box?

Brad Pitt kept repeating that question in the movie Se7en. What’s in the box? What’s in the boooox? Yep, even in thrillers, packaging gives off that mystique.

Go to any grocery anywhere and the first thing you will notice is packaging. Everything sold is packed in all shapes and sizes with a sizzle of bright colors on the side. How something so simple can be so important in marketing a product?

Let’s take the simplest thing one can buy in a store; water. Water by any other brand is still that, water. It will taste the same. It will look the same. And all of those fulfill the same purpose, rehydrate our bodies.

So, what makes one brand of water different from the other? Packaging.

Packaging of bottled water epitomizes how important this process is. We as a consumer would choose a bottled water product based on how it looks like. Prefer a square bottle? How about one with pink labels and an orange cap? The packaging will dictate our choice and determine the success of the product in the consumer market.

The number one juice drink in the Philippines (Zesto), attributes its success on their foil packaging. When it was introduced in the market, foil packaging was new. People equated the product as an imported juice drink.

Nissins Ramen scored a success in the global market with its cup noodles. Even in Japan, the cup noodle has garnered tremendous acceptance despite the initial perception that it would fail miserably. What’s not to like about a cup noodle. Open top, add hot water, close top. Wait 3 minutes and enjoy.

Video: Packaging Design

Even with water, Evian scored big by touting its product as all natural (how much natural can water get?) and packaged at source. They justify the premium price because of the quality of the water and how modern they package the product. But basically, it’s still water.

How the product looks like in the eyes of the consumer is a very important process in product development. We buy at best sight. It’s not unheard of to attribute a huge chunk of the budget to packaging.

Even Steve Jobs knows this. His iPod had a simple design and an initial unique packaging.

So the next time you go shopping and end up in the bottled water section, remember water is water and just let your eyes do the shopping.


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New Eye Scan Data Uncovers How Menus are Read

Originally Printed in AdEdge Magazine
Written by Jonathan Vizcarra