Today, electronics OEMs have a place in just about every type of market—as different products integrate electronics. Now, with smart packaging, these same organizations have an opportunity to help customers develop new markets and services, and even help brands stay relevant in a variety fast moving consumer markets.
Major brands in the food and beverage, consumer packaged goods, consumer health, and industrial/professional sectors are all seeking opportunities to develop deeper relationships with their consumers by gathering data and building loyalty and repeat sales. These organizations are looking to develop greater consumer engagement and smart packaging can provide just that. The consumer is king in these sectors and the consumer experience is being considered more and more in the development of packaging that not only delivers the product, but forms part of a greater customer-centric ecosystem. Smart packaging can provide brands with real product differentiation as well as new and compelling ways to connect to customers, gather data and add loyalty.
Take auto-replenishment, for example. Smart packaging enables the measurement of liquid in a package can deliver benefits like the ability to auto-replenish, or at least highlight, when replenishment is needed. This provides convenience for the consumer – who no longer needs to think about re-purchasing things like laundry detergent or even olive oil.
For the brand, the benefits are equally valuable. Smart solutions share details of. Getting consumers to use an app to access a product ecosystem can also deliver consumer buying habits and provide insights that enable improved customer experiences. They also provide a vehicle to deliver offers, new product information and loyalty rewards. Using these ecosystems to reward loyalty and referral can transform consumers into brand ambassadors and through social media they can become powerful allies of any brand.
According to a survey conducted in August 2016 by Dimensional Research, the adoption of advanced packaging is growing rapidly. Nearly two-thirds of those polled see packaging as an important part of their brand experience and an important strategic investment area for their business. Almost three quarters view packaging as a significant part of the brand experience and over 80% expect significant increase in smart or intelligent packaging.
And it’s no wonder. Smart packaging offers value which goes beyond the consumer experience, adding benefits in logistics, shorter time to market, lower costs and greater agility. That logistics benefit might mean ensuring the delivered product is genuine, or that it hasn’t been tampered with, increasing trust between consumer and brand and avoiding expensive recalls or even lawsuits. Smart packaging with unique IDs can deliver data that tracks the whereabouts of products and temperature, and humidity sensors can reveal whether products are being transported and stored effectively.