Packaging Design Objectives

The marketer provides detailed information outlining the goals of a packaging design project. Packaging design objectives are then framed by the marketing strategy, with a focus on discovering a unique and distinctive space for the brand to live in and own.

Design objectives articulate the product's positioning, define the design assignment, create the foundation for the visual expression, and frame the creative strategy. The how-to process is often dictated by whether the objective is to develop a new product or products, extend an existing brand(s) into new product lines, or reposition brands, products, or services.

DIFFERENTIATION AT RETAIL is different from that in advertising, because the competitive brands are immediately next to one another on the shelf—and because the shopper is often spending less than ten seconds comparing products and making a decision. Given these realities, it does not pay to be subtle. Differentiation must be immediate and intuitive. Ideally, it should be visual, via the look and feel of the package itself. As a rule of thumb, if people have to actively read the label to find your brand's point-of-difference (vs. the package in her other hand), you are probably in trouble. If she has to read the back label, you have lost the overwhelmingly majority of shoppers in any category.

Scott Young,“Breaking Through the Clutter,” available online at:

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