Designing packaging and labels for shelf shout!

How do you attract the attention of a consumer who is brand loyal? The answer is simple. Design and develop packaging and labels that resonate with a consumer’s lifestyle. The effectiveness of a label is that it should be judged on its ability to incorporate great design, relevant and legislative data, and functionality.

“As a customer, the label should always make me want to grab the product for a closer look,” says Susan Ellison, joint MD at OPM (Labels and Packaging) Group (‘OPM’). “But as a printer of labels and packaging , I must study every millimetre of the packaging and label for visual appeal, originality of decoration, and overall quality. This is where a printer becomes a key partner to the brand owner: to create a printed label or packaging that resonates with the consumer and encapsulates the brand narrative of the product, while making it stand out among its competitors.”

Enhance the consumer experience

Consumers care about provenance and brand narrative. They want to understand more about how a product is made, along with the values and principles held by a brand. Incorporating these messages on to a label or packaging is key to consumer engagement in today’s competitive retail environment. Additionally, brands are always looking to extend consumer engagement beyond the point of purchase.

Clever and smart labelling tactics can bring all the above together. Peelable labels allow a larger amount of information – more selling space, to be included but if carefully curated, a label can say a great deal about a brand through graphics, texture, substrate with very few words required.

“A label will be successful if it works on three levels. First, when you see it across the aisle, you must be drawn to the brand’s personality. Secondly, the label should be clear, simple, and have a hierarchy of information, and lastly, the consumer should be able to engage when they reach for their smartphone or laptop to learn more about the product and its history. If the brand owner achieves this, then they have created a great label,” Susan enthuses.

The finished label

So, how should the brand owner determine the best label for their product? “If possible, it is ideal to bring your printer on board from the concept stage, because they can encapsulate your brand designs into the ideal label solution,” Susan explains. “Do not leave the labelling stage until the end; it should never be an afterthought, but an integral part of product development.”

Working with an expert labelling partner pays dividends in the long run because the label determines how professional the product looks on the store shelf.

“The label is the first part of the product the customer will notice, and the label choice reflects what brand owners want to say about the product, what the product says about the brand, and how the product will make you feel. Imagination separates great labels from average ones, so discuss your options with your printer,” Susan concludes.