You might not think at first glance that “packaging” and “social media” go together, but that all changes when you consider the huge trend of social media “unboxing”.
With 500,000+ Instagram posts tagged #unboxing, and an over 800% increase in YouTube video searches with unboxing in their title – the power of packaging on social media is bigger than you might think.
But, what is it that makes packaging share worthy on social media?
It’s important that your custom packaging creates a visceral first impression that ties in perfectly with your product, creating a seamless transition from unwrapping to enjoyment – all part of the ever important unboxing experience. Easier said than done, we know.
Here are a few creative ways to drum up online engagements, until your custom packaging finally reaches social media shareable status.
The best unboxing experiences begin with a box or package that is designed specifically for the target customer that’s opening it. Here, knowing the demographics of your audience is crucial. Not just their age and gender, but also things like what they believe in and what they struggle with.
Your package can, believe it or not, communicate to the user through the proper use of color, typography and even material to show them that you believe in the same values as they do, and that your product will help them address whatever is keeping them up at night with worry or otherwise causing them to struggle.
For example, soothing pastel colors and cursive fonts can evoke a sense of luxury or playfulness, while bold colors and serif fonts can give a sense of tradition or heritage.
But boxes are much more than the color or font used on them. The shape and style of the box also lends itself well to creating the full experience.
Companies often understand the essentials of box design for remarkable product packaging when it comes to the outside of the box, but leave the inside barren and plain.
What kind of impression does that leave on the customer? Will they share the package on social media to their followers and fans?
While you don’t want to cover up every available inch of the box to the point of looking cluttered, customize your box design with just as much care and attention that you did when designing the product itself.
That might mean looking for a packaging firm that allows for double-sided printing, on both the inside and outside of the box. Or, consider featuring your logo on the outside, with an inspirational or funny message on the inside – something that makes the customer feel even more like “this company totally ‘gets’ me!”
There is a ton of packaging inspiration out there, start exploring! Just remember that the unboxing experience is a carefully orchestrated ceremony in a sense, with your product playing center stage. Little details can make a big difference and resonate with your audience.
Keep in mind that people who are less familiar with your brand are seeing first-hand how that brand treats its customers on social media. Based on what they’re seeing, would they feel more inclined to buy from you?
We’ve talked about color above, but I want to make a special mention of not just the role that color plays psychologically, but also in terms of how it is received by the audience.
Large companies know just how important stunning product photography is, but let’s face it. Not every social media user has access to professional photo gear, and fewer still will use anything other than their mobile phones to shoot their unboxing videos and take their pictures.
With that in mind, having strong colors that show up and reflect the brand well in a photo or video is a major selling point. When users are scrolling down their social media feeds and see a product that they’re interested in, the more memorable and impactful your design is, the more likely it will be remembered and engaged with.
Beautiful packages aren’t designed overnight, but now, more than ever, social media is playing a key role in how packages are being designed and developed. Packaging has the dual purpose of wowing customers, as well as protecting the products throughout the shipping process before reaching the eagerly waiting customer’s hands.
Consider, for example, perfumes and cologne. Commercials and social media posts alike don’t focus on the spritz or spray. They focus on the body and sensation that the scent evokes, but more importantly, they also focus heavily on the packaging. The shape and elegance of the bottle. The placement of the logo. The color and style. Everything lends itself to the brand and the impression that you want to create. That’s why successful companies choose custom branded packaging – and now, with social media, it has an even greater layer of importance.
So far, we’ve talked a lot about imagery and font, but what about texture? You may be surprised to learn that texture, although not a prominent piece of the packaging process, is vastly more important to men than women. Texture tends to lend itself well to products that want to present themselves as more natural, rugged and “of the Earth”. And although the details of a package’s texture may not show well on video or snapshots, it’s nevertheless present, and gives a sort of tactile impression to the user which clearly stands out from among the everyday packaging material they know.
That’s why it’s so vital to have packaging that’s shareable whether it’s on the shelf or on the screen. People have an insane amount of choices in this day and age, and both the big and small details that you can incorporate into your packaging have to work all the more hard to make your product stand out from the competition. Texture is just one facet that works to nudge your product out and away from its competitors.
Remember that at the core of the unboxing experience isn’t just the technical aspects of the packaging that make it social media shareworthy. It’s the social part of social media.
People like sharing positive experiences that they’ve had. When customers unbox a product, they’re taking the time and making the effort to showcase these products, often without prompting or sponsoring from the brand itself, while still helping to propel the brand even further through their efforts.
It can be helpful to look at unboxing experiences, on Instagram and YouTube especially (look for videos tagged #unboxing and you’ll find hundreds of them), to help inspire you. Even if you have a concrete idea of what you want your brand to convey to the customer, you may be surprised in watching the videos that sometimes the feelings and senses you want to be associated with your brand and product don’t even come to the forefront of the customer’s mind. In other words, there’s a clear disconnect between what you want your customers to notice, and what they actually notice (and their reactions as a result).
The right packaging can help prevent this, but also having a proper alignment of the brand, audience, packaging and social media presence makes this process far less likely to occur. Through your packaging itself, you can help guide the user into creating the kind of response you’re looking for – not directly, but rather subtly.
Making your packaging social media shareable involves a wide range of design and fabrication points to take into consideration. It requires some marketing know-how, some branding experience, and the expertise of a packaging company that understands how valuable your brand is, and the type of personality you want your product package to convey.
Fortunately, at Refine Packaging, our years of experience, combined with our proven customization process for companies and brands large and small makes us the perfect choice to trust with your brand’s packaging process.
From our dedicated artists to our proficient printers, packaging professionals and branding specialists, we’ll work with you to help create a packaging “presence” that perfectly combines the attributes you want to have shine from the moment your package arrives to the moment the product is taken from its confines.
We’re ready to help you make your packaging social media shareable. Contact us today by phone or online to learn more about our many custom packaging options. We can’t wait to learn more about your brand!
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