Packaging Has Strategic Role in Brand Refresh/Renovation

There’s an old marketing adage: when a new brand manager arrives, get ready for a package design change.

While there may be some historical truth to that expression, its use typically conveyed a sarcastic, shallow and derogatory view of marketing. Hopefully, such thinking has dissipated, because packaging is a critical success factor to maintain brand health and relevance. And, those marketers and business leaders who take a disciplined, strategic approach with packaging have a distinct advantage.

This brings me to Arrowhead Mills, a brand of Hain Celestial.

While brand management personnel may have changed over the years, the company’s view of packaging as a strategic, brand-management driver has not. This year, Arrowhead Mills has been phasing-in a complete redesign across categories, including cold cereal.

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“See Thru Can” Is Vivid Example of How Packaging Can Drive Marketing

Despite the yearning for disruptive marketing ideas, the challenge in much of the day-to-day world of marketing is identifying and applying new ways of thinking about existing products or services.

Take canned vegetables. The process of canning goes back about 200 years. So what’s the marketing team assigned to launch a new brand of canned vegetables to do?

Use packaging innovation as a marketing change agent.

South Carolina-based McCall Farms has introduced a new brand of ready-to-eat vegetables called Glory Farms. The kicker: the products are packed in “see thru” composite containers.

Credit: McCall Farms/Glory Farms.

Credit: McCall Farms/Glory Farms.

The packaging innovation achieves three crucial, marketing and sales objectives: Continue reading

Take Poll on New March Madness Basketball Courts

Notice anything different with the basketball hardwood this March Madness?

The NCAA has implemented a complete “packaging” change for this year’s men’s basketball tournament.

2016 NCAA men's basketball tournament. Dunkin Donuts Center, Providence, RI. Credit: Connor Sports.

2016 NCAA men’s basketball tournament. Dunkin’ Donuts Center, Providence, RI. Credit: Connor Sports.

The most important new design feature is highlighting the “March Madness” brand with a giant center court logo. It replaces the blue, circular NCAA logo. That’s a smart brand management marketing move. Continue reading

Focus on Customer Content Drives Costco Marketing Strategy

Credit: Costco.

Credit: Costco.

Take a spin around costco.com, and you’ll find a website loaded with consumer-friendly product information designed to inform, persuade and generate “Add to Cart” shopping clicks.

Costco utilizes a consumer education strategy online, particularly for many of its OTC healthcare and dietary supplement products.

Pay attention, B2B and DTC marketers. Shoppers desire complete product information and accurate photos as part of their research and purchasing process. I can’t quantify the benefit, but it stands to reason that investing to upgrade the content for your communication platforms will pay-off, and effectively differentiate your company and brands.


Recently, Costco added a consumer website called TreatMyHeartburn.com to promote its Kirkland Signature branded acid reducer product.

Credit: Costco.

Credit: Costco.

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Domino Confuses and Optimizes with Sugar Package Change

Converting a product from a resealable pouch to a flip-top canister is a dramatic packaging change.

Different enough to confuse the shopper that brought it to my attention.

Too buried among tens of thousands of SKUs for the in-store customer service team to know the scoop.

Finally solved by calling Domino and getting the explanation.

Photo/Graphic Credit: Harvey Chimoff.

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