Page 16

message about cleaning power. On each redesigned container, a yellow swatch asserts the specific benefit (e.g., “Kills Germs,” “Wipes Out Clogs Fast”), while a common tagline (“Unbeatable Clean”) conveys the brand promise of the line as a whole. Research had indicated, says Nelson, that users readily agreed with statements such as “this stuff really works” when asked about the effectiveness of the products. The same praise could be given to the effectiveness of HBN’s visual makeover, which Home Care Labs credits with a 20% increase in dollar sales for The Works in the first quarter vs. the previous year following the redesign. When it’s time, it’s time

Chipman says that HBN’s business is about evenly split between initial design for new products and redesign for existing ones. In the latter category, she says, when a package begins to look dated or when sales have begun to decline, that’s when the brand owner realizes it may be time to “strengthen the brand story.”

Taking a proactive approach, the firm periodically surveys its client base to see which brands may be in need of improvements or extensions. Nelson says that although the attitude of “if it’s not broke, it’s okay” may make some brands slow to change, that resistance disappears when sales fall or market share has stagnated. Other factors that prompt brand review are changes to products that necessitate changes in packaging; intensified pressure from competitors; and the addition of distribution channels ( for example, club stores) that require packages specific to those environments. But, retooling the image of a branded package is never simple. An overabundance of choices and the “much shorter attention spans” of today’s message-bombarded consumers make it harder than ever for packages to be effective as promotional vehicles for their brands, Chipman says. Shoppers examining a package implicitly ask, “What can you for me? How can you solve my problems?” The package, Chipman says, must be prepared to “reach them emotionally” and provide the answers. “If your product doesn’t connect with consumers, they will pass it by.” These days, agrees Craig Harbauer, senior designer, “brands have to work harder to be distinctive on the shelf,” and they have more to communicate in terms of product information than they used to. That can mean adding words to the packaging, and words, he says, “are always the hardest things to get people to look at.” Fortunately, according to Judy Driscoll, production artist, one of HBN’s strengths is simplifying and organizing the brand messaging. “We’re really good at the visual audit,” she says.

This 22-oz. seamed foil bag conveys the snack food’s Indian roots and ingredients with lotus flowers, a cobra snake, and pastel colors.

14

NOVEMBER 2010 | PackageDesignMag.com

Package Design - November 2010  

In this issue: Meet the 2010 Makeover Challenge Winner: HBN Brand Design accelerates brands through strategic design and simplified commu...

Package Design - November 2010  

In this issue: Meet the 2010 Makeover Challenge Winner: HBN Brand Design accelerates brands through strategic design and simplified commu...

Advertisement