These days, packaging is so much more than a means of containing and protecting the contents of a beverage. It communicates the identity of a brand through artwork, colours, materials, and more. It helps consumers recognise products, guiding them to try a new product or repurchase one again and again. It can even be an opportunity to show values and commitment to the environment, winning the favour of eco-conscious consumers. If you get it right, it draws shoppers’ eyes to your product and tells them it’s the best choice. If you get it wrong, your product may taste delicious but it becomes just another can or bottle on the shelf for consumers to walk past.
With packaging linked so closely to sales, the choice of which vendors to work with along the various stages of idea generation, conceptualisation, design, testing, and supply are important. Even more important may be finding one company that can do it all, a partner rather than a vendor. Someone with whom you can build a close, collaborative relationship to yield the best solutions for your brand. Enter CANPACK, to help you achieve just this.
“At CANPACK, we want to go beyond mere packaging supply. We collaborate closely with customers, far before the packaging execution, to assure the best business-fit,” says Stephen McAneny, Group Commercial Officer at CANPACK. For a company that built its name supplying aluminium beverage cans in the 1990s, this approach has enabled CANPACK not only to redefine its own service offering but to also work with brands to push the boundaries of what is possible in product packaging. The new goal? To collaborate with more companies from the very beginning of packaging creation, helping them to design and execute packaging that creates a feeling and communicates a message.
Why partner with CANPACK?
For the client, there are several advantages in this approach. Before a final design has even been created, CANPACK can foresee and avoid manufacturing challenges or disappointing results. “Sometimes the customer creates a design and, when a test batch of cans is produced, it turns out that the special effect, varnish or even range of colours that they would like to use don’t give the expected result,” explains McAneny. “CANPACK’s partnering approach gives us the possibility to advise on special effects that match the design, helping the customer make the right decision.”
High-quality packaging is associated with premium-tasting contents in consumer’s minds. CANPACK’s focus on the quality of execution along the whole process naturally yields top-quality results. The company’s approach leverages every aspect of the available technology. “We focus on the quality of lithography preparation, making sure that the graphic designs are not only good and correct, but that they are of the highest possible quality, refined in the smallest details. Final artwork enhancement is the manual work of a dedicated graphic designer to ensure the best quality of the print,” explains McAneny.
For the team, it’s all about squeezing the maximum potential out of each project and making sure the best end-results are delivered. As McAneny adds: “Our multi-stage print approval process and a wide range of testing possibilities allow our clients to feel fully cared for and confident about the best possible final effect on the packaging they receive.”
A recent success story involves CANPACK’s collaboration with Kompania Piwowarska, who selected the company to design and print personalised beer cans for its Tyskie brand. In the context of social distancing, Kompania Piwowarska wanted Tyskie’s packaging to bring Polish beer drinkers together. The goal was to create the feeling that “there is more that unites, than divides us”. The result was 64 different designs created and manufactured by CANPACK, each replacing the Tyskie brand name with a popular Polish first name. The project’s success was only possible thanks to CANPACK’s agile approach to production and the use of its unique Quadromix printing technology, which helped the company achieve personalisation at scale.
“CANPACK’s Quadromix printing technology was the key to delivering our brand message to our consumers in a memorable and conversation-provoking way. Intense market research proves that this personalised approach resonates with our consumers,” says Paweł Półtorak, Senior Brand Manager, Tyskie.
Packaging’s role in new product development
Over the past few years, we have witnessed the emergence of many new beverage categories. Think hard seltzers, functional drinks, non-sugar soft beverages, and blended drinks. Many of these were the results of meta trends such as health, wellness and convenience. According to McAneny, the upheaval caused by the pandemic further accelerated some of these trends, at the same time bringing to the fore topics such as mental health, immunity, and the need for relaxation.
“When combined, all those trends may give rise to a number of new beverage categories and we have noticed the increasing number of such drinks in our customer portfolio. When a new product comes to the market, its packaging plays a tremendous role,” he says. The perfect packaging will secure safety and quality standards, while enabling the right route to market, fitting the brand storytelling and consumption occasion, and catching the attention of the shopper. All the above, argues McAneny, means packaging becomes the ultimate sales tool for new products and should never be an afterthought in the product development process.
Essentially, product and packaging are not separate entities. Alongside decisions about the new drink’s flavour, texture and formulation, beverage companies need to be considering packaging materials, pack sizes, and opening styles. “It all matters for the final security of the product, the stability of the taste, the colour. What follows? The satisfaction of the consumer,” states McAneny. New products only have one chance to enter the market, so close collaboration on the packaging side of things becomes even more valuable. Once early decisions have been made, CANPACK is here to assist with the rest.
McAneny is clear that CANPACK understands different customers will want to deploy his company’s services in different ways, utilising different elements of the services they provide. But while each such arrangement is welcome, the CANPACK team encourages customers to fully utilise its capabilities, and that’s something that is possible only through close collaboration.