Our stomachs are a little bigger and the bruises from Black Friday shopping are still fresh which can mean only one thing: the holidays have arrived. Everywhere you turn, products are donning new looks with special holiday themed designs. Nowhere is this more evident than the grocery store. From dairy to liquor, and even pet food, consumer-packaged goods are different.
But, why should brands embrace the holiday season?
In short, holiday-themed packaging can help a brand:
- Remain relevant
- Catch consumer’s attention
- Increase brand value
- Capitalize on impulse shopping
- Connect to consumer emotions
The best bet for brands wanting to remain relevant during the holiday season without accumulating added costs and risks, is a seasonal package. Quite simply, the brand retains its same year round products but with fancy new exteriors. A new package design may be all it takes to catch a consumer’s attention and remind them of your great product.
Consumers who regularly purchase Garelick Farms milk are more likely to purchase Garelick Farms milk through the holiday season, even without holiday packaging. However, there is always the very real possibility an impulse shopping consumer may be attracted to another brands’ holiday package and switch brands as a result. In order to combat this possibility, Garelick Farms utilizes family-friendly holiday designs on all their milks. The brand not only keeps its legion of fans during the holidays, but it increases the consumer’s emotional connection by associating the brand with good times.
Earlier this year Wellness CORE Pet Food introduced a new line of treats, CORE Superfood Protein Bars. Instead of releasing a limited edition product, which would be both costly and risky given the infancy of the line, CORE chose to dress up one of its established products with a holiday themed design. The package maintains the brand identity while giving it a festive holiday touch. Opting to do a seasonal package will help draw consumer’s attention, allowing the brand to compete during the busiest time of year, as well as create loyalty. If the consumer enjoys the Chicken and Turkey with Sweet Potatoes recipe flavor, they have the ability to purchase it year round.
For only a few months out of the year, customers are able to purchase these special seasonal products. Limited timing forces a higher percentage of impulse buys at shelf and thus, increases sales. Having a shelf-ready seasonal product is one of the more advantageous and risky strategic decisions a brand can make. From time, planning, and production to design, marketing, and advertising, the costs are substantial. However, if successful, a seasonal product can increase brand value and maintain relevancy in the mind of the consumer.
Seemingly overnight, the Garelick Farms Egg Nog appears on shelves across the Northeastern US just in time for Thanksgiving tables. Introducing a new, limited-time flavor to its normal line of dairy products adds excitement and anticipation for consumers waiting year round for the novelty drink.
Another brand expanding their flavor portfolio during the holidays is TruMoo. Known for its flavored milk, Trumoo adds a twist to its Chocolate milk with the Chocolate Peppermint edition. The eye-catching designs of the package and playful flavor help grab the attention of the impulse shopper looking for a fun, limited edition product for their family.
Old Mother Hubbard Baking Co. started over 80 years ago and remains a top choice for pet owners wanting to provide wholesome, all-natural snacks to their pets. Knowing pet owners want to spread holiday cheer to every member of their family, Old Mother Hubbard introduced Jingle Jangle P-Nuttier. These crunchy dog snacks come in holiday shapes with a taste of peanut butter & molasses.
Known for crammed houses filled with kids, friends, and relatives, the holidays are the time to stock up on consumer product goods. Companies wanting to differentiate themselves beyond new flavors may introduce larger quantity packaging, such as value packs. YoCrunch offers a special 12-cup Holiday case pack, with seasonal designs on the cups and red and green M&M toppings alongside Oreo toppings.
Giftable/Collector’s Edition Package
As one of the most giftable items and a decorative addition to most dinner parties, alcohol and liquor brands must differentiate themselves against their competitors and their own year-round packaging to snag invites to all the best parties. One of the more unique, time consuming, and costly executions with arguably the most long-lasting effects is the giftable/collector’s edition package.
Many years ago Smirnoff, the largest vodka brand in the world, introduced the Smirnoff Nutcracker as a special collector’s edition bottle. With a new structure of a nutcracker, utilizing the hat as a decanter, Smirnoff was able to reintroduce its classic vodka in a convenient, gift ready package. Having a collectible package creates an emotional experience and ongoing relationship with the consumer. To this day, the Smirnoff Nutcracker package can be found in online auctions, ready to delight its next brand loyal consumer and their home.
With the National Retail Federation projecting this years’ holiday spending to total $619.9 billion and households spending an average of $1300 on gifts, food, decorations, and more*, the question isn’t, should you do holiday themed packaging, but really, why aren’t you?
[Disclosure: Hughes Design Group designed all packaging used in this article]