Packaging Innovation
January 10, 2014

How damaging are packaging design mistakes for brand equity?

Creating valuable and effective packaging for your product is a big investment and requires a lot of work. Yet, even with all the energy that goes into designing, producing and testing packaging formats, mistakes often go by unnoticed. So then what? How can you save brand equity when a flawed packaging design hits supermarket shelves?

Brand equity in danger

Is it ‘over and done with’ for your brand when a packaging design contains an error?

Perhaps reassuringly, packaging designers and producers all over the world have made mistakes, from simple spelling and grammar issues on packages to severely flawed technical failures and design malfunctions. The good news is that most of these brands survived their mistakes … and probably got stronger because of them. As long as you haven’t seriously offended your customers, brand equity will probably be ok.

Hershey’s packaging design mistake

It’s probably comforting to know that even the big brands sometimes make poor judgment calls. A famous example is Hershey’s “Ice Breaker Pacs”, a breath-freshening item consisting of a kind of minty, sweetened powder that the user was supposed to allow to dissolve on the tongue. Launched in 2007 the product was marketed at young sporty teenagers. The candy came in separately wrapped packets of white powder, giving it the look and feel of narcotics. Protests against the drug-like packaging and presentation concept quickly rose and the product was taken off shelves within a year.

Setting matters straight to restore brand equity

Yet, that one mistake didn’t destroy the brand. In fact, packaging imaging debacles aren’t the end of the world. Some marketers even argue that a bit of controversy can be good for brands, as long as it doesn’t happen too often. So rest assured, packaging design mistakes are all but the end for your brand, as long as you can set the matters straight quickly!

Source: Smashbrand