Connected packaging, the bridge to consumers rituals

BNO NEXTpack, published this interesting guest blog of Taco Schmidt on a Dutch Marketing Blog, which we’d like to share with you:

Connected packaging, the bridge to consumers rituals
Experiments from Bombay Sapphire, Ferngrove, Heineken and Diageo

“A relevant story telling from the shelves in a fraction of a second. The technical solutions are there, think of interactive packaging equipped with NFC, printed electronics, sensors and UL print technology. But, what is the relevant brand message that justifies the extra cost of such a package? What ritual can you pick up and how do you change the message, depending on the context? Be inspired by these examples.
Packaging already extends the shelf life of products, identifies the product’s temperature, provides personalized product information or fills databases with user data. Technology parties such as Amcor, BASF or Kurz are active in the area of smart packaging for medical, cosmetic, beverage and tobacco products.

Connected packaging offers the opportunity to be of real added value to the consumer before, during and after sales. Packaging is thus more than seducer, information carrier and container.


Technology can be the means to make a product part of personal rituals of people. The dream of every brand owner in each market. Some examples:



Bombay Sapphire: impact and contact from the retail shelf

Bombay Sapphire launched as one of the first a pack containing printed electroluminescent active surfaces in the packaging.

As soon as the package is taken from the shelf , a light animation on the package is activated.

The decorative elements of the Bombay Sapphire identity move stunningly on the packaging. The opening of a bottle is truly becoming a feast.


Ferngrove, Frankland River Wines: personalize a product with packaging

Brand loyalty is declining; ‘Access to anything, anywhere’. Brands will have to provide a relevant message at any time, for any specific person.

A direct link between the product and the Internet helps the brand owner to present the correct product information, presented in the appropriate language for that particular audience and occasion, and in that particular location.

Ferngrove, Frankland River Wines is one of the largest Australian wine suppliers in APAC countries. Thanks to an RFID chip in a tag and a smart device app, brand and market are protected.



Mainly the content which is shared is dedicated to that particular bottle of wine, to the one location, presented in the appropriate Asian language.


Heineken Ignite: interaction during use

Connected packaging provides the opportunity to offer consumers after purchase something extra as a reward for the purchase. Or to support or zoom in on the use of the product, or make it even more special.

Heineken Ignite, is the world’s first interactive bottle. More than a thousand bottles can be simultaneously activated by a DJ track. After the activation the bottle enlightens with the beat of the music, a toast with friends and of course when you enjoy a sip of Heineken beer.

This makes for a unique group experience; directly linked to the Heineken brand.


Best practice: Diageo

During the last five years there were more and more opportunities to create unique and relevant touchpoints. By cleverly combining data sources; packaging sensors, supply chain, social media and way of use we can gain a full understanding of the consumer without doing research.

A best practice: Diageo launched the Johnny Walker Blue Label smart bottle. Electronics and sensors -implemented in the label - register if and when the bottle is opened.

Diageo can send information to consumers after they have scanned the bottle with their smart phone. Promotions are sent when the bottle is in store, cocktail suggestions are being sent when it is opened.


Back to work

Thanks to the internet products become a commodity: a consumer good that you can get to thousands of customers via various channels. In some market segments, already 60% are sold online.

This calls for redefining the role of branding and packaging for future store concepts. Traditional shelves will disappear, but the packaging could play a central role as a means of communication with the consumer, focused on their ever-changing environment and needs.

This is within easy reach, if marketers and designers, both the owners of the emotional domain of brand, product and packaging, will jointly get started. Otherwise, this might become the domain of technology developers, with the result that soon everything is possibly but nothing relevant. Welcome to the future!”




Taco Schmidt is managing director of REGGS, member of BNO NEXTpack.





previous image
next news item