JoAnn Hines, The Packaging Diva

JoAnn Hines
The Packaging Diva

Other Articles By
The Packaging Diva

  • 13 Packaging Trends to make consumers buy in 2006

  • 10 Packaging Tips That Will Make Consumers Buy Your Product

  • 10 Tips on Packaging That Sells Product To Boomers

  • 9 Packaging Problems That Lose Sales

  • A Bad "Wrap" For Packaging

  • A Brand Is A Package Too

  • A Valentine Heart Should Be More Than Just A Box of Chocolate

  • Bombed Out With BOOMERS? Your Package May Be The Problem

  • Desperate Housewives.... What's for Dinner????

  • Don't Think Like A Package Designer. Think Like A Customer.

  • Earth Day Battle: Packaging VS. The Environment

  • Fear Factor Packaging

  • Food Packaging Trend Ė 100 Calorie Snacks; Smart or Stupid?

  • Has Your Packaging Gone To The Dogs?

  • How To Make Your Product Packaging Newsworthy

  • Is Your Package a Candidate for the Oyster Award?

  • It's Easy Being Green - Packaging Your "Green" Brand

  • Launching a Brand at the Super Bowl With Dreadful Packaging

  • Packaging By The Numbers: Demographic Challenges 

  • Packaging Design For Overworked, Time-Crunched And Over-The-Edge Consumers

  • Package Design That Connects with Consumers 

  • Packaging Made Frozen TV Dinners Possible  

  • Packaging Myths and Realities for Women over 50

  • Packaging Trends You Cannot Overlook

  • Packaging Your Product for Thunder Thighs And Big Butts Too

  • Retail's First Moment Of Truth - The Package

  • Should I Think Pink On My Product Packaging?

  • The Death of Packaging as We Know It

  • The Outside Of The Box Is As Important As What's Inside

  • Tips For Packaging Products SHE Will Buy?

  • Todays' Consumer Is A Moving Target

  • What Can NASCAR Teach Us About Packaging?

  • What's In Your Bottle? What Wal-Mart Wants Wal-Mart Gets

  • Wooing Women With Packaging

  •  

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    Hot Packaging Trends

    The Packaging Diva's predictions on "hot"packaging trends.

    Baby Boomer Products

    Women & Product Packaging

    Environmental Sustainability And Packaging

    Labeling And Ingredients Statements On Packaging (ongoing)

    RFID And Packaging

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    Green Packaging Noise

    I just got a call from Brandweek to comment on green product packaging backlash. I've been writing about it for a while but this week reading about square milk bottles brought it all to a head. While the idea of a square milk bottle looks good on paper and its attractive financially to the retailer, a lot of consumers hate it. It's just like the bag of milk I discussed earlier its cumbersome and very consumer unfriendly and mostly likely will never fly here in the US no matter how environmentally friendly it is.

    To Read The Rest Of The Article Fill Out The Form Below


    Bad Things Happen to Good Packaging

    Last week, I got a call from Japan News reporting here in the US.  They wanted to know what was happening regarding the use of the words "China Free" on product packaging and labeling. The plans were for a big expose of "contaminated" products coming out of China. I'm sure you have seen the news and are concerned about possible contaminates. But what about the consumers’ perspective? A negative ground swell of public opinion could dramatically influence your product sales if it’s coming out of China.

    That's a bad thing and it could happen to your product.

    To Read The Rest Of The Article Fill Out The Form Below


    Packaging Valentine's Day for Profit

    Holidays are a great time to market new packaging innovations.  Consumers look for that special something to celebrate the occasion and prowl the isles for that unique gift that means you are special to someone. Valentine's Day is one of the best holidays because it’s emotionally connected to the heart; and the heart is at the crux of what connects product packaging to consumers. If your product packaging cannot "connect" to the consumer, then it will never make its way out of the door.

    So what is the emotional connection that says to consumers “buy me or pick me up for a closer look”?

    To Read The Rest Of The Article Fill Out The Form Below


    10 Easy Packaging Improvements For More Sales In 08

    Well, we are into the New Year and everyone is making resolutions on how to improve in 08.

    In fact I just provided some easy packaging resolutions that you CAN keep. It's time to seriously think about your product and it's packaging too. Just like we do with our mental, emotional and physical aspects of our lives at this time of year, think about improving, updating or changing your product packaging. You want it to mesh with your consumer wants and needs. Consumers are a moving target and what worked last year may not work in the years to come or something may have changed externally that might influence the consumer such as the move to green and environmentally friendly product packaging.

    To Read The Rest Of The Article Fill Out The Form Below


    Not Ready For Prime Time Packaging

    It's 08 - Are your packaged products ready for prime time? Here are a few insightful tips to help you out.

    There are many packaging issues afloat in the minds of the consumer.

    We just came off the traditional "wrap rage" cycle that stirs everyone into a frenzy around the holidays. Be aware that it's still an issue to contend with in the minds of the consumer. Clamshells, twist ties and difficult to open packages still get mileage in the media.

    To Read The Rest Of The Article Fill Out The Form Below


    Packaging Resolutions You Can Keep

    Take a moment to reflect on the past year from a packaging perspective. There were lots of stories in the news about the role packaging plays in our society—from less packaging to “wrap rage.” One thing we have learned is “negative” packaging gets lots of press and in most cases “good” packaging gets none.

    Let’s think about how we can positively promote our industry and your products in the minds of the consumer for 08. Set your sights on a few resolutions to create a more lasting impression with the ultimate market for your products: the consumer.

    To Read The Rest Of The Article Fill Out The Form Below


    I Want More Packaging—Not Less!!

    Wow, what a statement! I’m sure I’ll be excoriated for this opinion.

    But seriously, this is how I make my living. I understand and analyzing how the packaging industry works. It’s complicated and it’s big business. To be cost effective consumer products companies have been forced to use packaging as an integral part of their marketing campaigns. Remember the salesperson? When was the last time you saw one who actually knew anything about the products inside the store? Selling – that is one job of product packaging. It has to tell the customer all about what’s inside the packaging. It helps you make an informed purchasing decision too.

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    Your Brand Is Your Personal "Package"

    What is a Brand? Webster defines a brand as a characteristic or distinctive kind of mark. In contemporary society, a brand is the essence of what people believe or think about you, your product, service or your company. Branding is that touchy-feely good stuff that translates into the way people feel about products and services. There are also negative brands out there, but we won't go there except to mention that strong brands can very quickly become negatives ones. Consider all the negative publicity about Mattel and all the flak around that brand with the lead paint issue.

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    Is Your Product Packaging Newsworthy?

    I see hundreds of releases on product packaging every week. For the most part I read the headline and say to myself ďwho cares.Ē That in itself is very telling because I am a packaging junkie and Iíll read almost anything that has to do with packaging.

    Recently, mainstream media coverage of the packaging industry has been more in-depth than usual. I see dozens of articles about packaging each week. Unfortunately, the vast majority of the news articles deal with negative perceptions of packaging and its influence on society.

    To Read The Rest Of The Article Fill Out The Form Below


    How To Find A Packaging Supplier For Small Quantities

    This will probably be one of the hardest tasks you have associated with getting your product to market. Many packaging manufacturers simply don't handle small quantities so itís important to find a supplier that works with minimum quantity or small quantity orders at the very beginning. Fortunately there are now many resources available to someone starting the process of packaging their product.

    To Read The Rest Of The Article Fill Out The Form Below


    Is Your Packaging In The Pink?

    I'm sure you are aware of the fact that October is National Breast Cancer Awareness month. Itís interesting to see how much awareness the consumer goods companies have taken in this as a marketing ploy since I started writing about cause marketing packages a copy of years ago.

    This week, I received no less than five press releases about pink product packaging coinciding with the Susan Komen Race For The Cure and breast cancer awareness month. It ran from cereal to pasta. Heck, General Mills is partnering with Ellen DeGeneres to support the Race for the Cure this year and last year NASCAR was in the pink.

    To Read The Rest Of The Article Fill Out The Form Below


    External Influences Will Impact Product Packaging

    Consider this recent headline "Tesco pledges to cut packaging by a quarter...."

    Supermarket giant Tesco today pledged to reduce by a quarter the amount of packaging used in both branded and own-label products within the next three years. Uh-Oh! Are you worried? Well, you should be.

    To Read The Rest Of The Article Fill Out The Form Below


    5 Things Every Business Needs To Know About Packaging

    When you are getting started it's so hard to understand the integral role packaging has to play in marketing and selling your product. Put simply, itís one of the most important product decisions you will have to make. There is a universe of packaging suppliers, materials and even regulations. Not to be overwhelmed, it is easy to navigate if you take it one step at a time. It is a process just like any other component in product development. They key is to know which packaging factors will influence your productís success --or failure.

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    Outpackaging The Competition Before They Outpackage You

    Does a productís packaging count or make a difference in the eyes of the consumer? Traditional advertising and marketing methods are under attack. They just aren't working anymore. Is your product packaging prepared to take their place? The important issue to recognize is that the package is in a position of power. It can capture a consumer at the first point of contact in a retail environment.

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    Packaging That WORKS

    What product have you purchased lately that you really loved the packaging?

    One that you have not complained that itís over packaged but felt like the package really worked in conjunction with the product inside.

    There have been lots of great new packaging innovations that have made our lives easier. There are also so many packaged products that we simply take for granted never understanding that the packaging make it possible. These are everyday items that we never consider how they got to us.

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    Packaging Is Our Friend

    Packaging: I looked the term it up in a couple of online dictionaries. In my opinion, none of the definitions truly represent what packaging is today nor did they address where we would be without it.

    With all the flurry of activity around the plastic bag and water bottle bans at airports, I thought it was time to reiterate the positive role packaging plays in modern society. The role of the package has changed over the years from functioning as a simple container to becoming an integral part of our society. Yet most people aren't aware of the packageís important aspects or don't understand how it works. They just know that it exists especially when they perceive it as a problem.

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    Packaging Inventions That Save Lives

    I just returned from speaking at the invention show, http://www.inventionshow.com/, on how to package your invention to sell. I saw a lot of great, innovative products that had a lot of merit. Some of them could become the next, new, "hot" consumer product. However, what struck me the most was that everyone focused on what they were developing not whether it would appeal to the consumer. They seemed to even ignore a consumer need for their product.

    To Read The Rest Of The Article Fill Out The Form Below


    Baseball, Father's Day And Packaging

    With Father's Day coming up, I have been on the lookout for innovative packages on products for dad. One of the most interesting was a head of iceberg lettuce wrapped in baseball graphics by Tanimura and Antle. I liked the concept and it made the "buy me" connection yet Phil Lempert, "The Supermarket Guru," thinks the connection is tenuous at best. With over 60,000 products in the average US supermarket I'll take any connection that works.

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    Packaging Your Products for MOMS

    So what does Mom really want on her product packaging? What will entice her to pick your product off the shelf? What siren screams "buy me" as she walks down the isle? The answers are not what you might think. Women perceive products differently than their male counterparts. They have different expectations of products. Women say that they product manufactures don't understand their wants and needs either. In fact 59% of women feel misunderstood by food marketers.

    To Read The Rest Of The Article Fill Out The Form Below


    Packaging Snafus And Problems

    What is your worst packaging experience? A lot of people say itís getting the toys out of the box at Christmas or getting those blankity-blank plastic clamshells open. Itís a fact that hard to open plastic clamshells have been so maligned that there is even terminology given to that product category: ďWrap-Rage.Ē

    There are lots of reasons why a plastic clamshell is a great solution to your product packaging, but plan to give it some thought before choosing this solution. The consumers hate clamshells so consider that when developing your product packaging. At the very worst, you donít want to end up as an award winner in Consumer Reports Annual ďOyster Awards.Ē ........

    To get the rest of the article and many more order Do It Yourself Packaging at http://doityourselfpackaging.com/


    Packaging As A Marketing Tool

    Thousands of new products are introduced every year, more than 15,000 to be exact. How can your product compete, not only with established brands but with the plethora of new products that are being introduced? The answer of course is THE PACKAGING. The right packaging with the right message will rise above the competitive landscape. But how many companies understand the value behind packaging as a marketing tool? Most just look at as a way to convey the product or recycle tired images and product packaging that doesnít work.

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    I Was Attacked By Predatory Packaging

    Predatory packaging itís out there -- and itís everywhere. It could be targeting you, your family, -- your loved ones. We have heard those terms bandied about, but just what exactly is predatory packaging?

    It seems everyone has a different perception what this means. Similar nomenclature could include the terms misleading or deceptive packaging or packaging that promises one thing and delivers another. But simply put itís when any group or person deems a package is using unsavory marketing/advertising practices to lure consumers to purchase their products -- and it has been going on for a long time.

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    Is What's On The Outside Of Your Packaging What is Inside?

    The Prevention Institute, a nonprofit health advocacy group out of California, studied 37 heavily marketed foods with pictures of fruit on the packaging. Fifty-one percent of the products contained absolutely no fruit, a few had minimal amounts! Yikes, you have to be vigilant on all of these fruit claims. Just take a stroll down the fruit juice isle and try to figure out which product is real 100% juice.

    We all have had that experience of buying something based up its package or label and then find out what is inside is not what we expected.

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    How To Avoid Costly Packaging Mistakes

    You invest so much time and money in product development, why not invest a little more and protect yourself from making a bad packaging mistake? It is easy to make a packaging error that comes back to haunt you after you have packaged the product and sent it on its way to the retailerís shelf.

    We think about bad packaging when they hit the news. For example "Ecoli Outbreak Attributed to Packaging." Packaging that on the surface seems like a good idea but then backfires due to some unforeseen circumstance that takes place. Why wait until it becomes an issue?

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    Packaging Valentine's Day for Profit

    Holidays are a great time to market new packaging innovations. Consumers look for that special something to celebrate the occasion and prowl the isles for that unique gift that means you are special to someone. Valentine's Day is one of the best holidays because itís emotionally connected to the heart; and the heart is at the crux of what connects product packaging to consumers. If your product packaging cannot "connect" to the consumer, then it will never make its way out of the door.

    To Read The Rest Of The Article Fill Out The Form Below


    Ten Packaging To Doís In 2007

    Well, we are into the New Year and everyone is making resolutions on how to improve in 07. Itís time to think about your product and itís packaging too. Just like we do with our mental, emotional and physical aspects of our lives, think about improving and updating your packaging. You want it to mesh with consumer wants and needs. Consumers are a moving target and what worked last year may not work in the years to come.

    Here are 10 simple things you can do to ensure your product packaging is on target and delivers the right message to the right audience.

    To Read The Rest Of The Article Fill Out The Form Below


    10 Packaging Trends That Will Make Consumers Buy In 07

    People are sick of conventional advertising. Letís face it, most of todayís ads aren't working or, at best, aren't generating sales. So marketers need other methods of communicating the productís worth to the consumer. The package becomes an obvious and valuable means to that end. The point is if someone doesn't pick up your product they are never going to buy it. That's where the packaging as an advertisement comes into play. How can you engage the consumer at the beginning of the product relationship? The package is your silent salesperson and it better have the right message delivered to the right audience -- no matter what product is inside. It's all about the package (or should be) and who buy's it and why is it purchased.

    Understanding and cultivating the consumer is an ongoing task. Consumer preferences can change on a whim. When it comes to product packaging, itís important to understand the mindset behind consumer decisions. Each year new trends move into the foreground. Yet, while some are here to stay others move on as quickly as the came in to being. Some trends become mainstream across all industries, ethnicities, and generations. Trends have power. Use them wisely and you will reap the rewards. Here are 10 packaging trends that will impact whether the consumer will purchase your products or not.

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    Politically Packaged Packaging by JoAnn Hines Packaging Diva

    I know I promised my trends piece this week, but I just read an article about polar bears and how they may be placed on the endangered species list. Do you know that there are more polar bears now than there were 20 years ago? You wouldn't know it if you listened to the news. According to the media, polar bears are on the brink of extinction. That premise got me thinking about political spin and how it relates to what happens in the packaging industry. How packaging initiatives with the right spin can become "political" issues.

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    7 Packaging Resolutions for the New Year

    I'd like you to take a moment to reflect on the past year from a packaging perspective. There were lots of stories in the news both good and bad about the role packaging has to play in our society. One thing that most consumers will think of is the "spinach crisis and plastic clamshells."

    But let's think about how we can positively promote our industry in the minds of the consumer for 07.

    Set your sites on a few resolutions to create a more lasting impression with the ultimate market for your products: the customer.

    To Read The Rest Of The Article Fill Out The Form Below


    The Death Of The Plastic Clamshell

    Spare me, please. I'm sick of hearing about "wrap rage." Itís worse than ever this year and itís not even Christmas yet. Despite all the publicity surrounding all the good things packaging does, keep the product safe and secure, the media is on the attack. It seems that this is a subject the public can really get in to (no pun intended). If you are into blogging, check out the words "Wrap Rage" and you will get an earful.

    I faithfully respond to the blogs with one or two of my articles explaining the role of packaging in modern society to no avail. People just love to rant about the problems of packaging foisted upon them by the product manufacturers. As if we deliberately made these things difficult to open. Are we advocating increasing the amount of pilferage so we can pay more at retail? I guess we intuitively know what's inside because we don't have to actually see what we are buying. But seriously, don't forget we the "packaging people" are consumers too. Products are packaged a certain way for a reason and its not to make it more difficult.

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    I Hate Packaging

    It's that time again (the holidays) when packaging will be getting top media coverage by its detractors. Those would be the people looking to complain about product packaging because itís too difficult to open or there is too much of it or they think it doesn't do its job properly. I always read a slew of articles on how many people were injured or had to go to the hospital trying to open a package. Raps on the packaging industry appear in the news all year but with the holiday and all the gifts giving itís a natural topic to get additional publicity. Just check out my website www.PackagingUniversity.com  to read a few of the most infamous cases. I have been interviewed several times to explain the other side of the story: The role packaging has to play (the good side).

    Consumer Reports just put its annual call out for the "Oyster Awards" given to the worst packages out there. You can bet consumers are lining up to rant about various problems with packaging and how packaging is the bane of the public.

    To Read The Rest Of The Article Fill Out The Form Below


    How Packaging Can Transform An Industry

    Some industries are keeping current with innovative packaging technologies better than others. Packaging innovation can move your business from a commodity driven product into a premium product category. Not only that, it can build sales and create its own unique niche with little or no competition. Entire new categories of product have been created around a single niche market that may not have existed a few years ago.

    Why are so many companies not paying attention to this? They rely on the old industry standbys or packaging campaigns that are "tired" and "trite." Remember "Beer Profits Drop: Could It Be The Beer Bimbos?Ē (Yes, I got a lot of readers who wrote to me indicating that they liked the beer bimbos). Businesses tend to stay with the tired campaign and then wonder why sales are in a slump, or at the best, a status quo.

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    Baby's Got Bling - You Can Package Anything

    Recently I've seen a host of new product introductions and I wondered who is going to buy that? But there are products out there for everyone. After reviewing the items I got thinking these are great examples of the "Power Of The Package" you know packaging as the silent salesperson. After all its the packaging that going to sway you or not to consider purchasing these products.

    When I read about Bling H20, I initially thought what a great marketing ploy but then I realized that primary target demographics: boomers and women would be the ideal audience. These groups have money to spend and are willing to spend it for the right products. The luxury consumable market is also on the rise and product are being created to meet the demand. (Ask me about DIVA vodka) People are willing to invest in themselves with a little luxury spending so why not luxury bottle water.

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    Packaging: A Cause For Profit

    Recently I wrote the article ďHow to Package a Cause to Sell More Products.Ē It was one of my most popular ones. If you missed it you can read it archived at http://www.packaginguniversity.com/blog. As it turns out many new companies are jumping on the "cause marketing" bandwagon in conjunction with National Breast Cancer Awareness Month.

    Right now breast cancer is the most popular cause used at market because it is October and it can be closely identified with marketing to women. (80% purchaser and decision maker.)

    So companies are thinking itís a win-win to both audiences.

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    The Perils of Packaging Junk Food

    We all know that headlines can put a scare into manufactures and processors, but lately it seems the food industry is being bombarded with positioning and marketing statements about the role of food in healthy eating and lifestyles. I, in fact, spoke about the growth and potential of this market at the Health and Beauty America (HBA) in my presentation "Boomers Are a Booming Business." Believe it or not, healthy lifestyles are an important issue to Boomers.

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    Marketing Showdown: Mainstream Methods 0 Ė Packaging 10

    Mainstream marketing and advertising is dying. That's the cue for packaging to step up to the plate and take its rightful place as a powerful product marketing and branding tool. "Ad Age" recently reported that a newly released book reports that 37% of all advertising is wasted. Quite frankly, I agree. I have been studying this issue for a while and examining advertising/marketing messages (especially on packaging) and it is apparent that the new generation of advertising is weak.

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    Boomers Are A Booming Business-Why Boomers?

    Boomers are people just like you and me.

    Boomers are a prime and growing target audience. Does your product speak to them? Does your productís packaging compel them to buy it? If not, you are missing a very important market segment. According to Rick Adler, founder of The Senior Network: "Simply based on population growth trends, if a product is marketed to the 50-plus audience and maintains its market share, it should increase in sales by 35 to 50 percent in the next 20 years. Conversely, a brand targeted at the zero to 50 age groups will be flat in sales."

    Do you know these important facts......?

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    Produce Packaging Crisis by JoAnn Hines Packaging Diva

    It's sad to say but it takes an event like the ecoli outbreak resulting from tainted spinach for the media to take notice of the role packaging has to play in our society. Now itís coming under some serious scrutiny. I was surprised to hear network TV mention the packaging and food security this week and tie it to the threat of bio-terrorism. Are they finally waking up to the role packaging has to play in modern society?

    To Read The Rest Of The Article Fill Out The Form Below


    Wooing Women With Packaging

    I've seen a host of recent articles about how to package products for women.

    It's an interesting read about what consumers good companies think will appeal to 50% of the population. Duh!

    From cute cuddly critters to pictures of exotic and glamorous movie stars or even basic pink product packaging the message is the same: We think this is what women want. But is it?

    So what's the driver behind all these new offerings? Quite simply, it is the demographics. Women either make or influence 85% of the purchasing decision and companies are finally waking up to that fact.

    To Read The Rest Of The Article Fill Out The Form Below


    Personal Care Products Gearing Up For Baby Boomers. What About Your Packaging?

    I got this headline this week along with the following description:

    PMMI Study Indicates Personal Care Products Gearing Up for Baby Boomers.

    International brand-owners are marketing to the baby-boomer generation now more than ever. Baby-boomers are becoming increasingly aware of the connection between a healthy diet and lifestyle. Consequently, as this generation ages, they face several issues associated with aging. Anticipating the needs and demands of the aging consumer, the North American packaging machinery manufacturers are creating new, innovative machinery to support new and redesigned product packaging that are marketed to the baby-boomer generation.

    Surprise!!! Manufactures are finally waking up to this fact. I have been speaking and writing about it for over a year.

    Here is a portion of my article "How to Sell and Connect with Boomers."

    Every seven seconds someone turns 50 years old. With 76 million Baby Boomers in the United States, it is safe to say that Boomers are in command of todayís buying decisions. The potential for profit and growth from this group is enormous.

    To Read The Rest Of The Article Fill Out The Form Below


    Controversial Packaging Topics Make Great Media Fodder

    Packaging is in the news almost every day. Not in the obvious sense where the package is the focus, but behind the scenes playing an integral role in the story. The problem is most people aren't aware of packaging component and don't understand the importance of its function.

    Consider these recent headlines.

    • Consumers Want to Know What's Sweetening Their Foods
    • Nanotechnology Passes First Toxicity Hurdle
    • Aquamantra Gives the Gift of Luck to This Yearís Nominees

    There is nothing mentioned about the packaging in the headline, but when you delve into the article you find out that packaging has a role to play in the outcome.

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    Packaging: The Hidden Power Player In A Global Society by JoAnn Hines Packaging Diva

    Recent international events got me thinking about the role of packaging around the globe. As a result of the recent terrorist plot in the UK, I became more aware of how packaging really impacts our global society in many unique and hidden ways. Putting the nay-sayers aside, (The I Hate Packaging Club is not yet dead. In fact I'm adding a space for this very topic on my new website) packaging really is a major player in a global economy. Yet its role is either unknown or misunderstood by the vast majority of people.

    How can you bring your packaging products to the forefront in the consumersí eyes?

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    How to Package A Cause To Sell More Products

    What is ďcause marketingĒ anyway? I think it is a misunderstood concept for the vast majority of people. The definition for this type of campaign came from the Cause Marketing Forum. <<Cause marketing (also known as cause-related marketing) is an umbrella

    term that covers a rich range of marketing activity. Central to its definition is the idea of a marketing partnership between a business and nonprofit entity for mutual benefit.>> Note: It is not the endorsement of a product by a celebrity to sell more products. We will touch more on celebrity marketing and product packaging in a future issue.

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    It's The Packaging That's Making You Fat

    So what else is new? We blame packaging for just about everything including global warming (tee hee), so why not accuse it of making us FAT too?

    It's hard to buy a food product without some type of "fat" marketing message. Low fat, less carbs, sugarless and so on, but are these claims accurate? Are people getting fatter because they can't read the package? Is the packaging making them fat because it misleads the consumer? Can't we understand portion control or are we all slaves to the "supersize me" trend that permeates marketing messages?

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    The Power of the Package

    Hey branders, marketers, product development managers and packaging pros. It's time to step up to the plate with your product packaging. Mainstream advertising is losing ground. No one is paying attention to it any more. That puts packaging in line to take its place and capture the consumerís attention and get up close and personal.

    So what are you waiting for?

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    Packaging That Sells Products or Not

    For the last couple of weeks I have been covering the negative impression that consumers have about packaging. I have tried to dissect all of the ranting and raving from nay-sayers about packaging that doesn't work. Just last week Britain's National Federation of Women's Institutes (NFWI) launched a campaign highlighting supermarkets wasteful packaging policies. Granted this was in the UK, but similar initiatives could happen here. I checked it out briefly and I don't get it.......

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    It's Easy Being Green - Packaging Your "Green" Brand

    Find out why the packaging industry is at a critical juncture whether to go "green" in package development or not. Read about some of the latest innovations in "green" packaging. Click Here to read more.


    What Wal-Mart Wants Wal-Mart Gets

    Wal-Mart, the world's largest retailer, has decided that it wants to sell organic food. They made the "big" announcement last week. Having shopped Wal-Mart looking for a natural or organics food section, I find this declaration to be long overdue. Currently, most of the nation's major food producers are hard at work developing organic versions of their best-selling products. Look for new organic products from as Kelloggís Rice Krispies or Kraft macaroni and cheese later this year.............. To Read The Rest Of The Article Fill Out The Form Below

    What ever anyone says the topic of Wal-Mart is hot. Order this article and then read what others had to say:

    Entitle one Wal-Mart Environmental Sustainability Principles

    Responses to "What Wal-Mart Wants Wal-Mart Gets"

     

    How To Become A Wal-Mart Supplier

    Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. is the world's largest retailer, with $218 billion in sales in the fiscal year ending January 31, 2002. The company employs more than 1.3 million associates worldwide through more than 3,200 facilities in the United States and more than 1,100 units in Mexico, Puerto Rico, Canada, Argentina, Brazil, China, Korea, Germany and the United Kingdom. More than 100 million customers per week visit Wal-Mart stores worldwide.

     

    Now, imagine having your product sold in their stores.

     

    From time to time we have customers ask us if we know how to introduce products into Wal-Mart or other large retail stores.

     

    The answer we provide is: visit Wal-Mart's corporate site and look under "Supplier Information": http://www.walmartstores.com .

     

    There, you will find a complete guide to becoming a Wal-Mart supplier. Some of Wal-Mart's requirements include:

    • Completing the Supplier Questionnaire available on their web site

    • Listing your most recent financial information with Dun & Bradstreet (D & B)

    • Providing a copy of your most recent financial statements

    • Providing Wal-Mart with a copy of your product liability insurance

    • Providing your Uniform Code Council (UPC) information

    In order to allow you the proper opportunity to formally analyze if your product or service fits within Wal-Mart's corporate strategies or the market as a whole, Wal-Mart requires that you answer the following key questions. These questions are great questions to ask yourself prior to bringing any product to market.

    • Who is the customer with regard to age, average income, median family size, geographical location, population size and expected growth?

    • Where is the demand for your product going to come from in the future?

    • How will this product help position Wal-Mart to take advantage of this future demand?

    • How can Wal-Mart gain market share with your product and, at the same time, control the cost of doing business to maximize sales?

    • Who is your direct competition in this market?

    • Who is your indirect competition in this market?

    • What added value does your product have over your competition that can be passed on to the customer?

    • How will your product impact other related products in Wal-Mart's stores?

    • How does your packaging enhance the image and appearance of your product as compared to the current Wal-Mart assortment (i.e. how does the packaging sell the product)?

    As you can see, there is quite a bit of legwork that has to take place prior to having your product sold at Wal-Mart... but with more than 4,300 stores world-wide, even a small order from Wal-Mart would have to make your day!

     

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    Are You Wanted By The Packaging Police?

    I finally had to speak out. The packaging industry is under attack by the "packaging police."

    There have been dozen of backlash articles about it in the news recently. To tell you the truth I'm sick of all the articles talking about freeing Barbie from her packaging prison and how may people went to the hospital because they injured themselves trying to open a plastic clamshell and other esoteric "packaging adventures." These issues about packaging have been beaten to death and then some. And don't forget the blogs. Some of the worst venting about packaging appears on personal blogs under the I've had a bad day column.... To Read The Rest Of The Article Fill Out The Form Below

     

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    How To Package "Skinny"

    I'll be the first to admit I not much for dieting as you probably guessed from reading last week "Beer Profits Drop Could it be the Packaging?". I do watch my weight, exercise daily and try to eat well balanced nutritious meals, But I'm still tempted though by products that say thin, slim, low calorie or even diet (yikes) on the package hoping to find a product that actually tastes good or resembles the real thing.... To Read The Rest Of The Article Fill Out The Form Below  


    It's Easy Being Green - Packaging Your "Green" Brand

    Last week, I wrote about packaging and the environment. Since then I have been flooded with a host of interesting new packaging and product introductions. Surprisingly much of the packaging innovation is coming from outside the U.S. than from our own national companies.

    It seems that there is much more going on in environment legislation about packaging in other countries. In fact, at the World Packaging Organization meeting in Beijing last week it was announced that China is working to develop "green packaging" as part of its efforts to build an environment-friendly society. I also have had the opportunity to read some very interesting facts including this tidbit: the world consumes 25 billion pizza boxes annually. So, if your pizza box is "green" you can save the world............ To Read The Rest Of The Article Fill Out The Form Below


    Earth Day Battle: Packaging vs The Environment

    This is the week we celebrate Earth Day. Each year there is plenty to talk about besides global warming, although in this case the packaging lids are doing the talking. This from Stonyfield Farms-On April 22, the 36th Earth Day will be celebrated around the world......... To Read The Rest Of The Article Fill Out The Form Below


    Package Your Products for Thunder Thigh Women - Big Butts Too

    Wake up women (and you men too). I think we are seeing light at the end of the tunnel. Madison Avenue is getting real about advertising campaigns for women. Following the unparalleled success of Dove line of personal-care products sold by Unilever, the company introduced what it calls a "campaign for real beauty." I predict others will follow suit.......... To Read The Rest Of The Article Fill Out The Form Below


    Retail's First Moment Of Truth - The Package

    What is a package any way? We all know it conveys a product from point A to point B. Besides the obvious of getting it there undamaged or not broken, what's a box supposed to do? That job has changed dramatically in the last decade. The package has become the ďfirst moment of truthĒ at retail. And now, especially itís going to decide whether someone will by your product, or not. So you better pay attention to not only what goes inside but whatís on the outside of the box.............. To Read The Rest Of The Article Fill Out The Form Below


    How To Make Your Product Packaging Newsworthy

    Recently mainstream media coverage of the packaging industry is more in-depth than usual. I see several articles about packaging every week. Unfortunately, the vast majority of the news articles deal with negative perceptions of packaging and its influence on society. In fact, dozens of articles were recently written in response to the Consumer Reports "Oyster Awards" with such titles as: ďToday's Packaging Can Drive The Mild-Mannered To Rage" and "Open UP." Most of what was written in these articles did not bode well for packaging.......... To Read The Rest Of The Article Fill Out The Form Below


    10 Packaging Tips That Will Make Consumers Buy Your Product

    The customer is king/queen. We have all heard this mantra. Itís up to you, the supplier, to prove it so. With these ten tips you will be a lot closer to proving that you are on top of industry trends and technologies for the packaging industry........... To Read The Rest Of The Article Fill Out The Form Below


    100 Calorie Snacks; Smart Or Stupid?

    We all know that snacking can be good or bad for you depending on the amount of calories you consume. It is well documented that eating six small meals to maintain blood sugar levels is healthier than eating three large ones. Included in a healthy eating regime are snacks. The problem is what kind of snacks. Most of what we consider a snack is very high in caloric content. Itís hard to find a satisfying "low calorie" snack............... To Read The Rest Of The Article Fill Out The Form Below


    Beer Profits Drop. Could It Be The Beer Bimbos?

    I have been tracking the beer industry for a while and am wondering why they just don't "get it" in their marketing efforts. They continue to fail to package products that are appealing to seniors and women. Itís not just the calories that make this product less appealing to women and seniors (even with an overflow of tasteless low carb, low calorie introductions)............

    The product offerings simply don't "connect" with a target audience other than men. Now that's a great marketing ploy. Market to men, but guess what? By doing this they miss more than 50% of the potential market. It's not going to get any better no matter how many "beer bimbo" advertisements they generate. With all the beer giants scrambling for a market share, it is remiss and an opportunity lost not to market to women and seniors.......... To Read The Rest Of The Article Fill Out The Form Below

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