In today’s highly competitive regional and global markets, nothing stays the same for long. Packaging for consumer products needs to stand out on the shelf and reinforce your brand image. At the same time, you need to respond rapidly with new packaging for product launches and line extensions, and to address – or introduce — innovation in the marketplace. Getting a new product to market first, with winning packaging, can give your brand an edge and leave competitors playing catch-up.
How can you keeps costs in line, deliver the top quality your brand image and consumer tastes demand… all while minimizing time-to-market? Here are six secret weapons to employ:
1: Choose a single-vendor solution
A single-vendor packaging solution offers a seamless integration of package and structural design, printing and production that simplifies project management and logistics, resulting in a finished product in less time.
From conception to realization to final product, a single-vendor solution means dedicated technical expertise focused on providing you with a total solution to all your packaging needs. It also means a coordinated organization functioning with the overarching goal of maximizing your production efficiency and accelerating your speed-to-market.
2: Think beyond the box
A fully integrated packaging approach from a single, trusted vendor can deliver compelling “retail ready” innovation that maximizes supply chain efficiency and yields the fastest possible project turnaround time – harmonizing eye-catching design with structural integrity to promote your products and get them to the point of purchase and into counter displays looking their best.
Retail ready packaging not only improves brand visibility, but also improves transport efficiency as well as storage and stocking efficiency. So even when you’re product sells fast, they can be replenished quickly and easily.
3: Innovate faster
Packaging innovation is the key to your brand’s shelf impact, strongly influencing if not making a consumer’s purchasing decision. But how much time and effort spent on design is too much?
The most experienced and creative teams can deliver a home-run package and structural design in less time, while optimizing the relationships among the corrugate to be used, the printing, the footprint requirements, the legal/regulatory requirements, the shelving constraints and more. As whether a prospective vendor’s creative team can leverage 3D software to quickly mockup a complete, three-dimensional image of your design, for instance.
4: Choose a local partner
The longer the supply chain, the more can go wrong and the more it costs, especially with rising fuel prices. A shorter supply chain makes it easier to monitor production and respond more quickly to whatever production problems might arise. Proximity lets you respond faster to the need to innovate as well. The result is greater efficiency and faster time-to-market, as well as reduced costs and risks.
5: Choose a partner with quality certification
Cost is important, but nothing can derail a product launch like quality control problems. Make sure a prospective packaging vendor is certified for quality management (e.g., ISO 9001 registration) and adheres to quality control best practices.
6: Choose a partner that has invested in your success
Besides choosing a single-vendor solution, make sure your vendor has invested in state-of-the-art prepress and high-speed printing facilities. This will shorten your project timeline, while also ensuring an outstanding final look-and-feel.
What other “secret weapons” do you leverage to accelerate time-to-market for your packaging?
Flickr Photo Credit: by ToniVC