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    Packaging for the Modern Consumer: How Can Brands Stand Out?

    Packaging, transparency, sustainability are key

    By Matthew Brogie, COO of Repsly

    In today’s grocery stores, walking down any given aisle can be overwhelming. According to the Food Marketing Institute, the average number of products in a supermarket has grown astronomically in the last four decades, from 8,948 in 1975 to nearly 44,000 in 2013. With countless products to choose from, brands face a difficult challenge standing out on the shelf and attracting consumers. At one point loud, colorful, crowded packaging may have been the best way to appeal to shoppers, but this is no longer the case in 2015. Shoppers want to discover non-traditional, interesting products.  

    So how can brands best catch consumers’ attention? 

    Challenge the Status Quo: Today, people are all about rooting for the underdog and rebelling against large corporations. Non-traditional, homemade or “I got it at a thrift store” products are what resonate for consumers. Packages that use unusual materials, have funky shapes and include a degree of artistry pop. A company that has had success in breaking the norms is Boxed Water. Boxed Water provides a sustainable packaging alternative to bottled water and its unique packaging also serves to separate it from competitors. 

    Think Simple: Shoppers are attracted to simple but polished packaging. Muted colors and minimal writing can go a long way. This is especially useful when packaging products that are supposed to convey a high level of quality or are more expensive. Izze is one example of a company who did simple right: within the first two years of introducing their sparkling juice drink to the market, they were experiencing 450 percent growth per year without any TV, print or online advertising. 

    Go Green: Modern consumers are activists, and one of the most common trends in consumer activism is going green. In fact, in a recent study by Nielsen, more than 55 percent of consumers globally admitted they would pay more for products and services provided by companies that are committed to positive social and environmental impact. Products and brands that boast about their efforts in sustainability or environmentalism as part of their packaging appeal to today’s earth-conscious shopper. Method is one such brand that incorporates its eco-friendly mission into its brand packaging. Method touts not only environmentally conscious soaps and cleaning products, but also the recycled materials used for all of their packaging. 

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