Packaging buyers for brands and retailers are continuously looking at ways to improve market share for their consumer products, and seek to align themselves with suppliers who can deliver a more efficient and effective means of packaging production.
Here are five ways to create sales for Packaging:
1. Focus on existing customers – business owners and retailers understand the importance of branding their products and marketing their company story. Identify your existing retail customers. Rest assured, they are buying packaging today, but are they buying it from you? Do your homework and research the retailer’s distinct market position? What consumers are they trying to reach? What sort of targeted marketing are they using? Also, take the time to research the retailer’s most common shelving dimensions, stacking practices, and product delineations, and of course, how your packaging offering can fulfill their needs. Armed with that knowledge, you can weave your story into theirs and begin the process of successfully acquiring new packaging sales.
2. Learn the lingo – this is a two-part selling tip. As a PSP, you need to learn the various packaging styles, structures, and assembly requirements (Gable Boxes, Auto Bottom, Straight Tuck, etc.) to speak intelligently with suppliers and customers alike. Of equal importance are the relevant terms used by brand owners and retailers, such as Shelf Impact, First Moment of Truth, Billboard Effect, and Destination Effect, among others. These terms are used frequently to gauge the market effectiveness of a package design, as well as the brand loyalty it can ultimately earn from the consumer.
3. Think seasonal – seasonal packaging is a major driver for retail sales, yet is typically planned well in advance. Try to plan two to three seasons ahead, so begin asking your customers about holiday packaging in the early spring. Consider how you can help fulfill seasonal initiatives, such as POP packaging, kitting options, or gift packs.
4. Add value – these days most retailers have several tiers of brands and some may have private-label products as well. They are constantly looking at ways to compete on price, so be prepared with a list of value propositions to differentiate yourself. Leverage your ability to supply boxes “just-in-time” with low order minimums, or offer free spot color matching. Hidden (or unforeseen costs) are a common problem in Packaging, such as die charges or set-up fees, so reassure your customer that your quotes are all-inclusive. Lastly, have an environmental story to tell. Retailers are keenly interested in making environmental improvements to their packaging, but be sure you can offer the metrics to prove your story.
5. Prototypes – prototypes sell packaging yet they are often difficult to obtain for brand owners and retailers. Whenever possible, offer prototypes for proof of concept or market testing. Prototypes can simply be blank samples on job stock, or short-run printed samples for deeper analysis. Simple, inexpensive prototypes can provide valuable insurance prior to a longer-run production order. Plus, the extra effort will earn you credit from your customer, as they will appreciate your investment in their packaging success!