‘Made to stick’ packaging success:

In 2007 brothers Chip and Dan Heath published their powerful marketing book Made to Stick: Why Some Ideas Survive and Others Die.  The book describes the key factors in making a message memorable and engaging. “Succes”. (the last ‘s’ being omitted) is the acronym formula used by the authors for making an idea “sticky” . This same “sticky”success formula can also be applied to creating effective packaging design that sells. This is the Made to Stick Packaging Success Formula.

The Heath brother’s Made to Stick “Succes” formula:

  • Simple — find the core of any idea
  • Unexpected — grab people’s attention by surprising them
  • Concrete — make sure an idea can be grasped and remembered later
  • Credible — give an idea believably
  • Emotional — help people see the importance of an idea
  • Stories — empower people to use an idea through narrative

This powerful SUCCESS formula for creating “sticky” messages can also be adapted to increasing the engagement quotient of your packaging design.This is the “Made to Stick Packaging Success” formula

Do your packs on shelf demonstrate  “Made to Stick” Packaging Success?

S – Simplicity in packaging design is all about ensuring the prioritization, front-and-centre, of the core message. This means focusing on one concise message and driving that message home powerfully. Simple means using minimal ingredients, lots of white space and streamlined packaging to create emotional connection with the targeted consumer.

U – Unexpected means grabbing the consumer’s attention. Catching their eye on the retail shelf and making the targeted consumer stray away from their traditional purchasing habits long enough to pick up your product. Consumer purchasing decisions are not based on logic and rationale, but rather based on instinct and reactivity. Eye-tracking studies show consumers read on average only seven words during an entire shopping trip. These studies demonstrate that consumers buy instinctively based on color, shape and familiarity of location.

C- Concrete means ensuring the design can be easily grasped and easily remembered even after the consumer has moved on past the shelf. To be concrete, the design must create a sensory experience. It must paint a clear mental picture.  Anyone who has ever opened an iPhone box understands the value of how branded, premium packaging creates a memorable experience. Right from the time of purchase to the moment of opening the pack, great packaging elevates the product and creates high levels of emotional connection with the brand.

Credible — means being believable. Due to the fact that consumers, in most cases are unable to see “what’s inside” the pack, a well-designed and branded pack can communicate a sense of trustworthiness, authenticity and credibility. Simply stated, when companies or people are credible, they are more persuasive. When a brands message, portrays the company as competent, expert or knowledgeable, it portrays that company as trustworthy. This trustworthiness ensures  the  message on the pack will be more persuasive.

Emotional — Effective packaging design builds emotional connection into the pack design. “Made to Stick” successful packaging design houses use proven and tested strategies to engineer emotion into the packs they create. The package design, it’s message and the visuals on pack serve to both  communicate and engender an emotional jolt with the consumer. To do this means the designer must clearly understand how the target consumer languages their needs, their wants, their desires and lifestyle preferences. The designer must understand all the explicit emotional sensibilities that will evoke memories, trigger desires and create an itching to own or try.  The greater the emotional connection.

Stories — Stories drive action through simulation (what to do) and inspiration (the motivation to do it). Roger Schank, artificial intelligence theorist, cognitive psychologist, and former Northwestern University professor said: “Human beings are not ideally set up to understand logic; they are ideally set up to understand stories.”  The stories we tell with our pack designs serve as the link between our ideas, our design and the transportation of the targeted consumer to the experience they envision.  So rather than assaulting the consumer with all the facts and figures and rationale about the product, effective designers create packs that tells stories transporting the consumer to the farm yard where the animals are waist high in lush green grass.  T

The Second “S”

Whilst the authors Chip and Dan Heath only spell success with one “s”, effective packaging design spells success with two s’s. The second “s” in the “Made to Stick Packaging Success” design formula stands for SMILE.

Smile – In the highly competitive retail market a pack only has one chance to make a great first impression. Marketing and designers have the power to grab consumer interest on shelf with creative use of illustration, colour, typography and the use of different packaging materials to help them stand out from a crowded shelf.  Where appropriate being a little tongue in cheek with packaging can create a sense of fun. Hey, if you can make your targeted consumer crack a smile when they see your product on shelf…. Why not?

 “Made to Stick” Packaging Success? Example Fruit Juice Packaging

Below are some fun examples of packaging design that provides the consumer with the instant awareness of what’s inside the pack and making them smile inside. (Image Source: Toxel);(Image Source:http://www.designboom.com/design/moustache-paintbrush-packaging-by-simon-laliberte/Image Source:junfei176)

You can see more fun and unusual packaging designs by CLICKING HERE