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Creative News . Commercial Printing

09 Jul 2019

The never-ending quest for novelty…

If you work as a marketer or as a designer, you’re accustomed to seeing innovative brand messaging. But so too are the consumers you’re trying to reach. Today’s consumers have become cynical due to their constant exposure to new ways to try and persuade them to spend their hard-earned Rand.

Your challenge is to engage with them in ways that are more meaningful than simply encouraging them to spend. This is further complicated by the fact that today’s consumers are highly sophisticated and brand-literate.

Also, there is no such generic person as ‘the consumer’. In today’s increasingly individualistic society, there are almost as many types of consumer as there are people. What works for one, may only work for them – and won’t necessarily work for anyone else.

Set against this are budgetary and physical constraints which may place limits on just how creative you can be – or at least, on the extent to which your creativity can be put into production.

Fortunately, technology has now all but caught up with your imagination, in the shape of digital printing presses and associated software and applications. Whereas with conventional printing, single designs had to be produced en masse to make economic sense, today’s digital printing presses do away with these constraints.

Don’t just think digital – act digital

With digital printing technology, brands can not only be more responsive, but they can get ahead of the curve and anticipate and even drive trends. The possibilities are endless.

Because there is no need to create plates, start-up times are no longer an issue. Changing designs is simply a matter of uploading a new file – or instructing software such as HP Mosaic to create infinite variations on a theme.

This means that you can riff on your brand identity, adapting it to make it more relevant without compromising the heritage and authenticity that add value to your brand equity. Today’s consumers take themselves seriously, and increasingly each person is becoming a brand. This trend is being driven by social media which enables people to precisely curate their online image. Increasingly, they expect to be able to do this # too.

Consumers are designers too

Digital printing technology lets you align with social media by adding user-generated content to packaging, whether for sale to the general public or for delivery to specific consumers as part of a free or paid promotion.

Being able to integrate a consumer’s name, message or artwork into packaging creates a special bond between the consumer and the brand or product, and creates the potential for the consumer to share this event (which is what the product has become) within their own online circle of influence.

Mass customisation is just one way of engaging consumers. Spend any time on YouTube and you’re bound to come across ‘ videos. That is, content uploaded by consumers that focuses on not just products, but the way that they are presented.

Online or in-store, packaging counts

While packaging contributes to consumer experiences in retail settings, the growth of online shopping means that a shopper’s first encounter with brand packaging is now just as likely to be in their own home.

In either case, innovative packaging plays a vital role – either by helping a displayed product ‘speak’ to consumers or by creating an immersive experience before they even use the product.

Current packaging trends focus on addressing consumer concerns (minimalism, reduced plastic, sustainability) and ‘premiumisation’ (using advanced production techniques to create a more luxurious look and feel). Scodix, Foil, embossing, glitter and saturated colours on a variety of media are just some of the effects that can be created using digital presses.

To learn more about how digital printing can transform your ideas into reality – and transform the sales achieved by your clients – visit the Kemtek Creative section of our website for inspiration, information and case studies.