‘Augmented reality’ will ultimately merge the real world with the virtual world.

Packaging experts from around the UK got together at the recently staged Denny Bros Open Day 2011 event to discuss the future of packaging, brand visibility, product functionality and sustainability with contemporary packaging ideas covering food, pharma, household, DIY and public sectors.

The On-Pack Communication event looked at the production and supply of new packaging ideas, futuristic concepts and on-pack enhancements such as the multi-functional booklet label Fix-a-Form. The event looked at branding, innovation and creative strategies that can help to maximise sales and achieve brand loyalty. Keynote speakers Chris Penfold of Design Cognition and Chris Sherrard of LILITHdm examined how companies can meet consumer needs in an increasingly web-enabled world; and how effective brand loyalty can be secured through clearer, smarter and more strategic marketing.

Chris Penfold set out the challenges and opportunities that both consumers and the packaging industry would be facing in the future. He set out the issues concerning the evolving environment in which we live, where we have developed increased mobility and yet are time poor but have the benefits of greater computing power, Smartphone capability and Wi-Fi almost as standard.

He explained the theory of the web’s evolution, from its early days through to the ‘Big Bang’ phenomenon, explaining how the web has grown rapidly and exponentially, starting to ‘learn by itself’ and went on to explain the concept of ‘Augmented Reality’ which sees the real world merging with the virtual web world through the clever use of technology in futuristic marketing campaigns.

Looking at the infinite possibilities, Chris, who referenced the Minority Report film of 2002, says: ‘Not only will this emerging technology see the widespread use of mobile phone apps with packaging but also the development of materials technology enabling possibilities such as moving pictures on packaging through the use of paper thin flatscreens mounted on flexible and rollable substrates, which have already been developed by the likes of Sony, but are presently too expensive for use in packaging applications. It’s all on the horizon and it’s not a matter of if but when we will see these exciting initiatives in our shopping baskets.’

Chris Sherrard, a Marketing Strategist from LILITH, looked at the nuances of brand loyalty across a range of market sectors. She explored how, while loyalty starts and ends with product and service, not all retention is good. She also illustrated how marketing communications, including on-pack, can contribute to loyalty and protect the future success of a brand. Speaking about the challenges brand owners face today she said: ‘It is essential for brands to step back and take a strategic look at how their product or service meets customer needs. Marketing communications should reflect this relationship between brand and customer, and evolve in response to an ever-changing technological landscape and market conditions. The smartest companies will remain relevant and keep customers engaged, to come through these difficult times with optimism.’

Denny Bros experts detailed how to implement effective promotions on-shelf, how to include vast amounts of technical and legal information within the product offering, and how to roll out all important effective Customer Relationship Marketing (CRM) campaigns featuring promotions powered by unique numbering and SMS links to websites.

Confident of the need for a conference that focuses on the very latest developments in packaging and packaging functionality, Denny Bros’ Marketing Director Stephen Jarrold said: ‘This event has made us all look to the future and see the endless possibilities that lie ahead. It will encourage packaging technologists to embrace emerging technology whether it is to launch a brand new concept or develop an existing idea – and do things in a more innovative way.’

‘Denny Bros has always been at the forefront of technological change and we are keen to keep the ideas coming. Whether it is encouraging the use of apps within our multi-page booklets or recommending ‘crowdsourcing’ using Facebook to design the next big thing in on-pack packaging – we want to be a part of it.’

The Denny Bros Open Day 2011 event has become a part of the packaging sector’s official conference calendar.

The conference event was followed by a tour of the production facilities at the company’s manufacturing headquarters with demonstrations of the companies state-of-the-art printing presses, PDF checking system and a new inspection verification system which is helping to make further efficiencies with the processing of variable data.

Denny Bros has recently been shortlisted for the Print Week Award for Environmental Company of the Year due to the vast amount of work Denny Bros has done during the period of April 2010 to March 2011 to reduce the amount of energy used, increase the amount of recycling and therefore reduce the amount of waste sent to landfill. Marketing Executive, Nicola Salisbury, said: ‘As a company we take our impact on the environment very seriously and have gone to every length to ensure we have made changes where we can. We are very proud of our achievements but to be shortlisted for this award is an added bonus.’

Denny Bros Ltd

Tel: 01284 701381

www.dennybros.com

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