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Packaging is Critical to Brand Identity

By: Karen A. Newman
Posted: February 27, 2009, from the March 2009 issue of GCI Magazine.

Luxury, specialty and mass beauty brands all know packaging’s power to project an identity and move product through the till.

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Given all the thought that goes into packaging by the brand owners and their suppliers, the remaining questions is: Do customers respond to packaging? “Absolutely,” says Dirr, and Tarte’s Sansotta agrees.

“We see an overwhelming response from our customers each and every season,” Sansotta says. “We recognize that our customers are women looking for that little piece of luxury that won’t break the bank, which is why we’re constantly scouring the market for chic, eco-friendly fabrics and materials that are the ultimate in green glamour.” And they know when they get it right, she says, because they see its brand packaging components such as compacts being reused as business-card holders, or gift cases reused as clutches. Sansotta says this kind of nonverbal feedback is valuable. “Not only are we offering affordable glamour, but we like to say that we do all the legwork to help our customers reduce their carbon footprint by reducing environmental waste.”

Finally, Samuels at Mode Cosmetics knows that her customers appreciate the brand’s clean, luxurious packaging that leaves off frivolous, bulky and unnecessary excess because they tell her so. “The feedback we receive is proof positive that our marketing efforts are resonating with the consumer, and our future is to continually build on what we have already established,” she says.

Whether or not your brand has an eco-friendly directive, there is little doubt that wise packaging decisions will go a long way in supporting its mission and identity.