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Bespoke Chilled Packaging: An Additional Business Marketing Channel

In 2023, digital communication is a core function of every day life. Social media, email marketing and e-commerce often sit at the forefront of many business’ marketing strategies, with the key goals being to increase sales, generate leads and enhance brand awareness. However in modern times of mass consumption have businesses forgotten the major role that physical brand assets can play in achieving long-term goals? In this article, we discuss ways to use bespoke chilled packaging as an effective marketing tool.

 

What is the purpose of your packaging?

Image adapted from ‘Packaging as an Effective Marketing Tool’

 

In his book ‘Packaging as an Effective Marketing Tool’, Bill Stewart proposes that there are 3 core purposes of packaging. Containment of the goods in transit is the first and most obvious function of packaging to many. The second; protection, is particularly relevant to Sorbafreeze customers. Not only does Sorbafreeze chilled packaging protect from impact, it also offers protection against external climates, keeping your goods chilled for up to 48 hours.

The third core purpose of packaging, identification and communication, is often overlooked. Packaging is perceived by many people, in many different contexts and as such can be seen as a blank canvas to communicate both conscious and sub-concious messages to potential customers.

 

If packaging is theatre, then where is your stage?

World-renowned Apple CEO Steve Jobs once said “Packaging can be theatre. It can create a story.” At Sorbafreeze we agree with this concept, and encourage you to ask “if packaging is theatre, where is my stage?”

Consider the various environments in which your packaging will be seen by potential customers. This could include:

  • In transit via the courier network
  • In retail outlets
  • In supermarkets
  • At trade shows
  • During sales pitches to potential stockists
  • In customers’ homes during the un-boxing process

According to research from the American Institute of Packaging, the average package is handled 5-20 times during its supply chain journey, and visually observed many more times. So ask yourself, am I maximising the opportunity to communicate with people at every stage of my packaging’s journey?

 

What is your story?

Every business owner knows the story of their business, the unique selling points they want to communicate and the actions they want potential customers to carry out. Packaging can assist in communicating these messages.

At Sorbafreeze we believe there are 5 main ways in which packaging can communicate your business’ story:

 

Colour psychology

Colour psychology and branding are two disciplines that work together hand in hand. Every colour subconsciously evokes feelings within potential customers. For example, if you’d like customers to associate a sense of calm with your product then blue would work well for your brand. Conversely, if adding an element of excitement and danger, red would be the more obvious choice. Countless psychologists have analysed the feelings and thoughts generated by various colours within the packaging industry and information on the topic is widely available to research online. We recommend this article from Hubspot to get started: Color Psychology: How To Use it in Marketing and Branding (hubspot.com)

 

Typeface and Graphics

In a similar fashion to colours, typefaces and graphic design play a huge role in the impression potential customers will have about your business when looking at your bespoke chilled packaging. Fonts and formats can have a subliminal emotional impact on consumers. Consider the example in the image below, and how the words ‘chilled packaging’ are displayed. The first font at the top of the image may solicit thoughts of luxury and sophistication, whereas the typeface on the lower part of the image may appear to be more fun and informal. For more information on the psychology behind typefaces and graphics, see this article from UX planet.

 

Written messages, calls to action and interactivity

The most obvious way in which to tell your story via packaging is to include written messages about who/what your business is, your USPs and your company values (as well as technical information about the product itself).

However, as well as including written messages it is also possible to include calls to action or interactivities within your packaging. This allows the physical packaging to connect with your digital marketing efforts and work together to achieve your business goals. An example would be having a QR code to enter a competition on your website, which would assist with lead generation, or having links to social media and websites on your packaging to stimulate digital engagement and brand awareness.

 

Sensory factors

Sensory factors (ie how your packaging looks, smells, sounds, feels and even tastes) play a huge role in communicating your business’ story with your customer. Using the example of a butcher offering at-home deliveries, consider a product arriving to a customer in environmentally un-friendly plastic packaging, with a strong artificial smell. This may be off-putting to customers who have received the message that the packaging is not environmentally friendly or safe to have around food items.

Conversely, consider the butcher using chilled packaging for their products during the summer months. If the customer receives a package on a warm day and can see that gel ice packs and insulated packaging have been used to keep the meat cool, and the package still feels very cold to the touch, this is likely to leave a positive impression on the customer and promote an image of freshness and food-safety.

Fore more information on the sensory aspects of packaging, we recommend this book by Velasco & Spence.

 

Added value elements

In 2023, the impacts of the cost-of-living crisis are plain to see. Consumers are now more focused than ever on receiving as much value for money as they can with every purchase. Businesses have therefore had to ‘add value’ to their goods in creative ways, offering customers more for their money whilst still trying to turn a profit.

According to Bassin’s article ‘Packaging: A Key Element in Added Value’  in the Journal of Food Distribution Research, a great way to communicate added value via your packaging is to consider secondary functions of the packaging.

As mentioned previously there are three core elements to packaging: containment, protection and communication. However, you can add value to a customer by providing a secondary use for the packaging. An excellent example of this would be cereal boxes, which remain useful long after the product has been received by offering entertainment and games for children to play on the back of the box.

With Sorbafreeze chilled packaging, our customers are able to offer added-value with their products for a low price. Our pre-hydrated gel ice packs are reusable, meaning that customers feel they are receiving more value from their packaging, and can repurpose them for future use.

 

How can you get started?

We can help you to bring your business’ story to life and use bespoke chilled packaging as an effective marketing tool.

Learn more about our design services on our parent company website.

For advice on bespoke chilled packaging or to receive a free sample of our gel ice packs, insulated boxes or insulated bags, please reach out to our Sorbafreeze team today.

You can also shop our off-the-shelf chilled packaging range here.

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