We can’t look to packaging trends without first considering who will be buying the products and brands of the future.
Just as we become familiar with the word Millennial it’s time to welcome Gen Z or Gen Real. It was a sobering moment for some of the team on realising they were no longer the youngest consumer demographic.
Bella Towse from Bulletproof design agency highlighted some of the key attributes of the next influential consumer group. Gen Z is described as relentless individuals, with uniqueness being of utmost importance to them.
According to Bulletproof, this generation wants to be invited in, rather than talked at, with your brand and product needing to lend itself to their own customisation. As the most highly educated and digitally savvy generation, it’s not surprising that 72% of Gen Z want to start their own business when they leave school.
Another key seminar highlighted the importance of packaging design in the ‘goldfish era’. According to research we are now so bombarded with information our attention spans are shorter than that of a goldfish. Asa Cook of Design Bridge reiterated how packaging must capture, inspire and motivate to purchase in a matter of seconds.
Sustainability was a huge buzzword of the show. Not only across all products and brands exhibiting but an influential topic in seminars and panel discussions over the two days.
Companies such as Just Eat were openly tasking the packaging industry to help them develop more sustainable and environmentally friendly packaging as the food delivery market sector booms.
DS Smith also highlighted environmental concerns driving their ‘scenarios of the future’.
We popped into a great seminar by Kate Shaw, Creative Consultant and Designer, who shared some of the key trends developing across high-end packaging.
Examples of products using natural materials, colourways and simple branding were displayed that exemplified the growing consumer demand for natural, eco-friendly products. There was also focus on how next-generation nutritional brands were using inspiration from food photography and food brands in their wider marketing.
There was a big emphasis on experiential, multi-sensory packaging. “In this age of augmented reality, consumers will desire more physical experiences. Three-dimensional and tactile qualities will become more important.”
At Law Print Pack, we have been developing multi-sensory applications and finishes for a number of exciting projects launching next year.
The general feeling across Packaging Innovations 2017 was the continued importance of packaging in an increasingly digital world. Packaging is hugely important for overall product experience and will be a crucial focus for brands across online and offline channels for many years to come.