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power of packaging

The Power of the Package

If you’re an environmentalist, the topic of gift wrapping might ruffle your feathers. Fact is, Americans generate 25% more trash during the holiday season from Thanksgiving to New Years. We spend close to $4 billion on gift-wrapping paper, bows, boxes, and ribbon; the vast majority of it headed for the landfill.

As a marketer, you might argue that there are few more effective ways to enhance the value of a purchase or gift than by enhancing the packaging. A (not too) recent survey by Dotcom Distribution found that 52 percent of consumers are likely to make repeat purchases from an online merchant that delivers premium packaging. In that same study, Dotcom also found that nearly 4 in 10 consumers would share an image of a delivery via social media if it came in a unique package.

Then there’s the emotional element of adding on a note card, envelope or other forms of thank you, all of which have proven worth well above their material cost.

Of course, the mother of all package icons, Tiffany, is in a class of its own. The company blazed its own trail from the onset, first by clearly pricing its jewelry in 1830 for all to see, never negotiating one iota. The second by accepting only cash in the early days; no store credit like the other jewelers. The third (at least the third in my book) was in protecting its packaging by trademarking the robin’s egg blue, box design and white ribbon. (The company uses red during the holidays.) Its proprietary Pantone Blue No. 1837 coincides with the date of their founding and is not commercially available. Not even in the Pantone PMS book.

As I write this, there are 62 Tiffany boxes for sale on eBay. Boxes mind you, not products. And don’t ask me why I looked.

Happy Holidays.

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