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Perfection—The Devil is in the Details

By: Des McEttrick
Posted: July 13, 2011, from the July 2011 issue of GCI Magazine.

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The true opportunity for creating more meaningful consumer experiences lies in developing a product and package that go beyond expectations and give the consumer something extra. If that extra is completely consistent with the brand message, it becomes even stronger.

Often the first things done to create a “perfect” product are visual—impactful graphics, unique colors, use of metal to create a prestige or high-tech image, or use of colorful plastics to create a sense of fun and youthfulness. Visual impact is very important, and high quality, or perfection, is a driver in creating the overall visual impression—colors that are dead on, smooth finishes with no imperfections.

Beyond visual, there are many things that can be done to create a more “perfect’ product. Textural differences can have a big impact because they are less expected and so often more noticed, especially if that texture connects to a brand promise. Soft finishes can add a luxurious feel to a package, or reinforce a message of softness and moisturization.

The feel of a package in the hand can make a difference, so ergonomics becomes really important. The weight of a package can create specific feelings. Exceptional lightness can be a big consumer benefit in categories such as sportswear and electronics, while weight can create a luxurious feel for beauty products.

As a manufacturer of packaging, Aptar Home + Beauty exerts tremendous effort to both minimize any potential issues that could cause a negative experience and even more effort on small details that can have an impact in the product experience. To minimize any negativity, we do obvious things like work toward excellent and reliable quality, but we also do things like work to make our packages easy to open and close and easy to use. Toward enhancing the consumer experience, we spend a lot of time on details that will make a difference—like creating softer and smoother actuation when the consumer is dispensing or developing a fragrance spray that is lighter, more even and has a mist like feel. Admittedly, these are small differences, but these are the kinds of details that will lead to the perfect product experience.