I know that on Unfinished Man, I often like to talk about what to do when buying a product or starting a new project. Well today I’d like to discuss what to do when you’re selling one. Now for demonstrations here I assume you actually have a product for sale. If not, don’t look to me. My ideas are golden, and you can’t have them!Pure genius.
Today we’ll discuss what the marketing folk call Branding. Whether you’re selling a creme to stave off a winter cold, or your all natural fair-trade organic enhanced homeopathic coffee, you need packaging. It’s the first thing your customer sees, their first interaction with your product, and a shoddy job can lead to shoddy sales.
Good Packaging is kind of Important…
This is important no matter where it is you decide to sell your items, whether it be a farmers market or a chain retailer. Professional packaging projects an air of professionalism. It tells the consumer “I’m not just someone trying to make a buck. I’m someone who’s trying to make a business. I care.” It’s the little details that count, and though the customer may not realize that you decided to use high quality water proof labels, I guarantee they’ll notice something special about the presentation.Because Bananas needed a non-biodegradable wrapper.
So onward to the HOW of packaging. Now of course you can do this yourself and save a few shekels while doing it. If you’ve got an eye for graphic design then by all means give it a go. However, if you find yourself uninterested in entering the packing business for yourself, there is always the professional option. Start with subscribing to industry publications, both in packaging as well as the market you plan to enter. With over 10,000 packaging manufacturers in the U.S. alone these publications will help to narrow the field.
When starting your product on the market, a simple label is a great way to diversify your retail base. Perhaps you’re attending a professional trade show, or a new market place and want to highlight a key feature. Simply applying a new label to existing packaging can change the tone and presentation of your product. The best part, is that it’s really not that difficult. It’s easy to find high quality printed labels in a variety of styles, ranging from water proof labels and flexible labels, to the ever pervasive QR code we see adorning the footer of advertising banners.
Lastly, take the advice of professionals when you’re in doubt. I know, this product is your baby and you love it. Unfortunately you can’t be an expert in everything. Try not to get caught up in your own idea of what your packaging design should be. Listen to what the expert has to say, because if they were bad at their job, chances are they wouldn’t be the expert.
[Photos by Jennifer Feuchter, Citizen, and unknown]