Integrated Packaging Management

What is the right method for successful packaging? As a rule, individual design and standard packaging are shown as opposite poles and the only alternatives. This perspective gets in the way of understanding the complex correlations. Conclusive packaging solutions are created through an integrated approach.

Strategically oriented packaging companies that comprehend design as a primary component in brand development can contribute to the expansion or relaunching of brands. They have the potential to act as brand consultants because they go a decisive step further than the classic packaging producers or design agencies. They deliver ideas, concepts and plans—as well as realizing the comprehensive packaging solutions.

In integrated packaging management, the components of competition, brand, product, distribution, logistics and target group are considered in their interplay and not as isolated factors. At the same time, special attention is paid to the complex interrelations: Which factors mutually influence each other? Where can synergy be applied? Where are the redundancies that cost time and money? When all of the relevant factors are considered at an early stage, companies gain capacities and can concentrate on their core competencies: promoting and further developing their brands and products.

After initial analysis, a decision must be made on the basic type of packaging. The possibilities range from individual design to standardized packaging. In recent years, the mixed forms and all of their different characteristics have become considerably more important. Ideally, packaging developers should openly advise their clients about all possible approaches to solutions, as well as the pros and cons. Cost, volume, time and brand image play the largest roles in this decision. The basic principle can be formulated as follows: There is an appropriate packaging solution for every need; whether a new launch on the market or an established premium brand, whether a discounter or selective marketing—the design suggestions must match the concept, the target group and the price structure.

Within this context, the required legal protection of the design and/or the exclusiveness of the right of use is a critical point. Even for standardized designs, there are now options for guaranteeing the protection of design patents or exclusiveness for a user during a limited time period or area. It is essential to overcome outdated thinking and keep a constructive eye on the most current possibilities.

Good Design Requires High-level Consulting Skills

Recently, DieterBakicEnterprises developed a tailor-made design for Nivea Beauté. When making the decision in favor of an individual design, the significance of the brand plays the decisive role. The design reflects the long tradition of the Nivea brand and emphasizes its authenticity and quality. The well-known visual key elements of the brand—the clear blue and the round form—are mirrored and translated to the product world of decorative cosmetics. The bridging of the packaging design and marketing communication in terms of content and form has been developed in detail in a creative marketing story that serves as the basis for the integrated brand communication.

The decision between individual and standardized design is not always as obvious as in this case. The number of possibilities has further increased with the concept of mass customization. As a result, the integrated approach is vital for clearly organizing the large number of options. In addition to the strategic and conceptual level, comprehensive packaging management is related to the operative implementation in the many individual production steps: Is there a well-coordinated design for the bottles, tottles and jars in a line? Are all of the components technically compatible? Do the colors match exactly? Are there possibilities for a more sophisticated look through surface effects? Which form of printing is selected?

A great deal of time and patience is necessary if these questions are left up to individual specialized suppliers. Handling all these aspects through one company that covers all of the development steps with full service packaging saves capacity and money, offering the client considerably more value. The cosmetics industry is changing at a fast pace, which is currently one of the greatest challenges for the packaging management. All processes must be continuously monitored for possible time-saving potential.

For the U.S. salon brand Joico (Shiseido Group), DieterBakicEnterprises translated the ambitious slogan of “art and science bottled” into eye-catching packaging. Within a time period of eight months, the complete packaging line was developed for approximately 100 SKUs. In December 2005, the new packaging was introduce to the U.S. market. In 2006, the relaunch was promoted in Europe. The new key element of the product line is a slender, asymmetrical bottle from the DieterBakicEnterprises’ range of standard designs. The new color code for the product line includes six different metallic colors for the bottles and 12 for the caps. The complete delivery process—from design to tooling and color coordination to production, decoration and logistics—has been managed by DieterBakicEnterprises. Joico proved to be a successful example of the enormous potential of integration of standard solutions toward accelerating development cycles.

More in Packaging