Overall, the packaging world is insanity, when did we become a culture of more is more? This photo is the aftermath of attending the Chicago Sweets & Snacks Expo today and it is a noisy mess. I keep focusing on the Million Dollar Chocolate Bar because: money. There aren't many days in the month that I am weak enough to indulge in that much chocolate, but I highly doubt it tastes like a million bucks. It is a cute marketing scheme and stands out among the crowd, but does it feel genuine?
Overall, the trend in packaging seems to be the use of loud colors. Colors evoke emotion within the consumer and the package is essentially the final attempt at making a sale. I am happy to report that we are reducing the number of ingredients in our snacks. Every American can afford to reduce their sugar intake, so it was nice to see a variety of natural fruit infused/organic candies this year.
However, there are only a few products that cut through the visual noise for me today. For example, this Chef's Cut Jerky is an easy read. The hierarchy is spot on, the brand name takes precedence and the gritty sans serif typeface feels appropriate for jerky. The vector illustrations give me a quick read on the protein options and the colors represent the variety of flavors. An uncluttered design like this is useful to successfully convey a brand message. Whoever designed this package understood that by minimizing elements and mastering hierarchy the product will be elevated. Our attention span is too short these days, your brand has a few seconds to make an impact!
Martin's brand voice is much softer than the voice of Chef's Cut — these apple chips successfully tell a story about a time when ingredients were locally farmed. There is still a hand lettering trend in 2017 and I don't expect that development to leave us anytime soon.
I noticed a surge in spot gloss and foil this year (see: gloss on the reflection in the word Crisp). I don't have much to report on that, just an observation that companies are either investing more in their packaging, or these print requests are more easily obtainable. But this oversized apple image is a language that resonates with everyone. It feels like an illustration you would see in a children's book and customers seek comfort in that. (see: ingredients listed on the back).
It is hard to distinguish the foil detail in this image, but Joe's Chips have a nostalgic way of feeling wholesome. This package includes a vector illustration of a vintage truck, ornate detailing and color scheme reminiscent of the 50's. The retro, oversized block type helps illustrate Joe's characteristics of a loveable-grandpappy. Did I mention the type is huge? These design elements are intentionally clunky and take up ALL the space because it feels appropriate.
Interesting brands invest in a lot of research. This consumer-driven world can be confusing to navigate so like your mom said, be yourself. Your brand needs room to grow, but if you're honest about who you are then your messaging will remain consistent.