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Strategic planning critical for successful on-pack campaigns

Strategically planned on-pack campaigns have the power to boost sales during a promotional period and yield return on investment for brand owners. This is according to Stephen Beattie, Sales and Marketing Manager of Pyrotec, the privately-owned South African company that specialises in providing innovative and top quality product identification solutions.
Strategic planning critical for successful on-pack campaigns
Research conducted by Fix-A-Form International in the UK supports this assertion showing that 60% of all buying decisions are made in store influenced by the appearance of the product, free gifts, discounts, or competitions, which are all promoted on-pack.

"Many brand owners realise the potential impact that a well-executed on-pack promotion can have for their brands but are daunted by the amount of planning, sourcing, labour and time required to achieve this," explains Beattie. "However, like communicating through any other media vehicle, there are essential factors that need to be considered, planned for and adhered to for an effective on-pack promotion," he advises.

Draw up clear Campaign objectives
Before embarking on an on-pack promotion, it is crucial to have clear objectives for the outcome. "On-pack promotions can be utilised for a myriad of objectives that could range from encouraging purchase and boosting sales, encouraging brand loyalty, to collecting customer information for CRM purposes or for simply informing consumers about the brand," says Beattie. "Knowing the objective of the campaign is the first step in determining the best methods to roll out the campaign," he explains.

Strategic planning critical for successful on-pack campaigns
Draw Up a Budget for the Campaign
The next phase, once you have clear objectives and goals for your campaign, is the careful planning for the campaign roll out. "This includes figuring out whether you have the adequate budget for the promotion. The budget will determine the reach of promotion, the number of packs that will be involved in the campaign even the number of prize redemptions," says Beattie. "Also, once you have your objectives and budget figured out, you will be able to ascertain the form of promotional mechanic to be used as well as the best on-pack device to do so. A "scratch-and-win" label for example is better suited if the objective is to increases sales but also for consumers to interact with your product," he continues.

Work out a Campaign Timing Plan
Timing for rolling out an on-pack promotional campaign is crucial. In fact, a huge component of a campaign's success or failure lies in how well it has been timed. "Brand owners need to think carefully about when their promotion should take place. Timing it according to product seasonality and tactical calendar dates such as Mother's day is part of this. However, production lead times are just as important," says Beattie. "Product packaging and retailer demands can mean a lead time of nine months or more which is why an on-pack promotion cannot be embarked on impulsively," he continues. Calling winners and sending out prizes to them within the period specified on the terms and conditions need to be factored into the campaign's timing plan.

Communicating the promotion on pack

The communication of the promotion has to be clear, concise and relevant. "The information on the promotional device should be targeted, informative and should grab the consumer's attention," says Beattie. "Whilst on-pack devices such as Fix-A-Form labels provide ample space for vast forms of text, the space should be used cleverly with the aim of keeping the information simple and relevant," he continues. Consumers do not want to go through information that is confusing, complicated or requires too much of them or they will not participate in the promotion. Another crucial consideration is that the text should be legible and clear for them to read.

The design of the on-pack device has to be bold enough to attract consumer attention but also needs to compliment the product's packaging. "The colours, graphics and general aesthetic of promotional device has to work with the brand ethos as well as appeal to the target market," says Beattie. "There is a lot of room for creativity and innovation when designing the aesthetic of the on-pack device. Many traditional mechanics have been re-invigorated through clever creative twists. Pushing the boundaries and thinking laterally will ensure you product will stand out from the competition," enthuses Beattie.

Other Considerations
Promotional Prizes: The prize behind a promotion is the main incentive for consumers to participate in a campaign. The prize should therefore be desirable to your target market and reflect its aspirations. To increase the appeal of the prize, theme the prize to something topical and current such a new movie or a big sporting event. "In addition, the prize should be congruent with the brand ethos. One way of doing this is by linking it to the use of the product," advises Beattie.

Campaign Support: The thrust of the promotion should not rely on on-pack activity alone to raise awareness. "In store elements such as pop up banners, shelf strips and hang tabs can be used to highlight the on pack promotion," says Beattie.

Legal Requirements: Promotion dates and terms and conditions are a mandatory part of on-pack promotions. "If you do not have enough space to include all of the text, direct consumers to a web page where they are listed or consider using a multi-page Fix-A-Form label™," says Beattie. Make sure that the terms and conditions are clear, simple and free of legal jargon. If the promotion makes use of a famous personality, character or image sourced online, make sure that the appropriate license and rights to these have been obtained.

Conduct Pre and Post Campaign Analysis
If you have run an on-pack promotion before, it is advisable to conduct a post-campaign analysis examining what worked or not. Also, examine your competitor's campaign for its strengths and weaknesses and seen how you can learn from them or set your campaign apart.

"On-pack promotions can yield phenomenal results in line with a brand's objectives if brand owners are willing to implement meticulous planning, strategic thinking and innovation, before rolling out the campaign," concludes Beattie.

2 Aug 2010 07:43