Giving Your Products More Agency & Importance: An In-Depth Guide
It’s interesting to see how the packaging, user experience and general utility of each product can affect our day-to-day living. Most people know that the plastic sheet wrapping, such as that used to contain ribbon batteries or certain electronic devices, can be a nightmare to cut through. However, at least it keeps the product in good condition.
Moreover, some packaging is designed with the wow-factor in mind. Think of the last time you purchased a smartphone (especially from Apple), opening up the package with the presented phone proudly greeting you before revealing the additional peripherals is entirely purposeful, and it does have an effect on how excited we feel to use the device.
As a business, it can be nice to consider how giving your products more agency and importance, in this manner and in others, can be so helpful to your brand’s reputation. Sometimes, a relatively low-cost investment can pay big results, helping you stand out on the shelf or online store.
In this post, we’ll discuss how to achieve that and more:
Design Excellent, Fitting Packaging
Your packaging can be a multi-layered complex box that opens in just the right way, or it can be a simple, but well-branded means of delivering your item with care. For example, using carrier bags or little bags that can be held to fit your product in will be a cute, interesting little addition, adding a sense of class to someone’s purchase.
Think of how you might be handed jewellery in its box, usually, you’ll gain a premium little bag, branded with the jeweller’s labelling, to carry home with you. It’s not hard to see how this can elevate a simple purchase into a good decision that provides wholesome emotional feedback to those who gave you a chance to impress them.
Brand Your Products Well
It’s smart to brand your products well, to the extent you can. A simple engraved name in a pen you sell, or additions that add labels to your product can help. The inner packaging being branded can also help, for instance, the inside of shoeboxes often come with paper to line it, and additions like that, branded well, can speak to your attention to detail.
In other words, it’s important for a consumer to identify this item as yours, even if they’ve never heard of your business before. Not all products can conform to this, but many can. For instance, you’ve no doubt peeled a small sticker from a piece of fruit that tells you which company was responsible for the growing or importing, and that in itself is a form of branding.
Moreover, consider how certain initiatives can also add branding aids to help you stand out. For instance, the red tractor initiative in the United Kingdom shows which products have been grown in accordance with the AFS standards for food production, allowing those who prefer semi-local produce to know what to look for.
Post Tutorials Online
It’s good to promote your products, we know that, but it’s also helpful to explain your products clearly, as well as all their uses. So for instance, if you sell computer desk furniture, you might upload a video of one of your staff members constructing it within a studio space.
This way, buyers can work alongside you if their product is accidentally shipped without the instruction sheet if they lose it, or if they’ve bought it second-hand but still wish to know about your brand and what exactly they’ve purchased.
This effort also has the hidden benefit of preventing people from making mistakes with your product and chalking that up to poor design. For example, if there’s a specific means of construction someone has to perform at home in order to stabilize your furniture, then they can follow that as opposed to just assuming the right process and suffering for it.
Even small businesses can make use of this, as there’s nothing quite as worthwhile as solid communications and outreach.
Refine Your Content
While you’re at it, why not refine the wider approach to the content you publish surrounding your products? Fun advertisements, testimonials, and reviews could be posted to your YouTube page or sent to creators with no financial incentive to give you exposure.
You can also use your products to sponsor influencers in order to associate yourself with their brand image. For example, if you craft fitness supplements for those who do cardio, you might sponsor a running influencer online to try your product for thirty days and see if it makes a difference. This way, you add some authenticity to the product you stand behind, while also gaining clear eyes from a worthy audience.
Create A Family Of Like-Products
If it’s feasible for you to design this, implementing different “versions” of a singular product can be worthwhile to invest in. For example, you no doubt have a shampoo brand that you prefer using over most.
We’re willing to bet that such a brand not only sells the home-use amount of shampoo in a bottle you purchase every two weeks, but also travel-size, perhaps even a kids variant, and jumbo sizes for wholesalers or salons.
This isn’t to say you should have a product for each of those categories, only it can be wise to consider your options. In some cases, you may be able to vary your potential product library using the same manufacturing process as usual, but this time with newly designed bottles or a slightly changed formula.
Of course, this provides you the chance to sell your product to more people, for more practical uses, and with slightly varied needs. At the very least, you’ll have an option for others that might select another product to fill that need.
Use Your Products Yourself
As a company, it’s important that your products stand out in your own day-to-day usage. For instance, if you make office furniture, then it’s good to have that in your office. There are many different variants by this principle applies, but you understand the point.
Doing this not only adds a sense of authenticity, but it allows for consistency in your brand image.You should consider your own products to be all you need. When you see that an Android CEO is tweeting from his iPhone, then questions may be raised.
Work Out Deals With Professionals
You don’t have to limit yourself to the business or consumer market if this isn’t how you’ve directly structured your product library. But it can be worth looking for new opportunities.
For instance, you might offer a local salon a discount on your salon-quality shampoo if it means they’ll promote your products to their guests, or at least make them aware this is the product being used by proudly showcasing the bottles on the shelf.
Working out deals with professionals helps you increase your exposure, but it also helps those products speak for themselves, in new environments, used and implemented by people who may not gain all the financial and branding incentive as you do. Of course, that can be an ideal place to start.
Brand Merchandise Can Cross-Promote
It’s nice to add some merchandise to help strength and refer back to your products. Many people have worn a beer-brand’s cap or shirt at some point in their life, for example.
You might not focus on this exact merch, but those more in line with your potential offering. Branded sunglasses, bags, hats, and more can all play a part here, and many other items could fit your product more specifically.
This way, you may even include your merch to sweeten the deal for certain purchases, or you may give it out for free at expos or conventions you attend, especially during a large product reveal. Merchandise isn’t just a nice freebie, it’s advertising space all by itself.
“Don’t Like It? Get Your Money Back!”
A good way to convince new customers to check out whatever you have on offer is to offer a no-loss-possible promotion designed to encourage people to try. You may have seen more and more companies suggesting that if you don’t like the product for any reason, you can get your money back without having to return the product.
That might seem like too much of a trusting process to implement, but you’d be surprised just how well it can work. All of a sudden, potential customers have no reason to think “well, do I really need it?” Instead, they can risk the purchase, enjoy it, and move forward, or complain with valuable feedback to help you.
With a focus on de-activating accounts that abuse this system, or only allowing it once per person, you can ensure the system won’t be exploited, or you can limit that at least. A healthy refund policy helps build goodwill, as the whole process is an objectively pro-consumer approach. It’s not hard to see, then, why so many people appreciate you going to this effort.
With this advice, you’re certain to provide your products further agency and importance over the years, from a variety of angles.