Green is the New Black

Heard of the saying that good space is at a premium? Whether you’re looking for a tiny loft in NYC or squeezing into a tight airline seat, everyone is economizing on space to properly “fit” in. Due to escalating fuel costs, environmental considerations, and an increased population, the shift toward doing more with less continues in almost every economic sector. For new home builders, they’re designing multi-functional living spaces while airlines tighten seats in economy class. Consumer goods manufacturers, too, battle the package sizing war. With less packaging real estate, companies have less space to tell the product message.

Packaging houses, protects and promotes the product.

Packaging houses, protects and promotes the product.

Retail shelving space is at a premium, and manufacturers, such as Zircon, look for ways to effectively promote the product’s features and benefits, yet economize on packaging. By reducing the size of clamshell and blister carded materials used for its products, Zircon reduces the amount of discarded packaging that ends up in landfills and optimizes retail space for other Zircon tools.

As products become more compact, yet feature-rich, less materials and resources are endured to produce the product. Zircon tools are designed to be nimble enough for everyday use, yet rugged for the toughest industrial applications. Through consumer feedback and robust environmental testing, each new tool is ergonomically designed and enhanced for superior functionally while also reducing unneeded materials.

Packaging evolution!  Zircon's original StudSensor, circa 1980 vs. the new StudSensor Edge, 2014.

Packaging evolution! Zircon’s original StudSensor, circa 1980 vs. the new StudSensor Edge, 2014.

The packaging reduction aids the environment. Less plastic materials produced mean a decrease in carbon emissions. Companies and individuals alike benefit from reducing emissions and producing a more eco-friendly world. We all can, and should, make a difference.

It’s All in the Packaging

Marketing imageThe next time you’re in your home center or local hardware store, go to the nearest aisle and pick up a product that catches your eye. Ask yourself, “Why did I select this particular product? Is it because of the graphics or maybe the shape or type of the packaging?” Then take a closer look at the package as a whole. What message does the packaging convey? Does the packaging complement the product?SS HD25 frnt

Retail packaging is an art and, when skillfully done, serves multiple purposes. In its most practical sense, packaging houses and protects a product. However, with adequate thought and design, it can also be functional.

Packaging materials can range anything from plastic, cardboard, aluminum, or glass and are often combined for improved functionality, reduced costs, theft prevention, durability, and increased store shelf appeal. In the home improvement market, you may notice more rugged, durable materials, such as hard steel cases or clamshell embodied packaging that completely encase the product, are used.

A marketer’s goal is to design an aesthetically appealing, yet informational, package that can entice the shopper to pick out, learn about, then buy, their product at the point of sale. Differentiation is key! In the couple seconds a consumer decides if the product is viable, the packaging must quickly and clearly convey what the product is, how their tool is better, and why the shopper needs it. As packaging real estate is often very limited, style design and determining what product information is most pertinent can be a challenging, if not daunting, task.

At Zircon, we continuously look for ways to effectively and concisely communicate our product’s story via our packaging. Incorporating technological advances such as QR codes, that when scanned with your smartphone, can link to additional product information and videos, take minimal space, and yet allows us to supplement our product’s message so our customers can still make an informed buying decision.

While our packaging has evolved over the years, changing size, shape, color, and words, our overall commitment remains the same – design a package that not only engages the consumer, but provides an unwritten bond between Zircon and our end user as he/she purchased a tool they understood, valued and needed.

To optimize the usefulness of your Zircon tool, make sure to view our blog, “How is Your Battery?” for key insights.

Sharpen your tools with Sharon as she shares her key insights of the tool world and her impactful marketing strategies and tactics. Follow us on Twitter or like us on Facebook. Sharon image