With its ability to offer personalized packaging and marketing materials, digital printing is becoming increasingly important to marketers as they search for new ways to connect with consumers.
Reaching specific small groups of consumers online can be relatively easy because of the amount of data that follows internet users, but personalizing offline campaigns has typically been difficult and inefficient. Digital printing is helping to change that, allowing companies to offer specialized messages offline, as well.
A recent example is Coca-Cola’s recent “Share a Coke” label, which features people’s names directly on bottles and cans. Ad Age says it is one of the company’s “most successful promotions ever.”
And Coke may be looking to top itself with an upcoming campaign called “It’s Mine.” According to Ad Week, Coke will use digital printing to create a unique label for every single 12-ounce glass bottle of Diet Coke it sells during the campaign. A more limited number of patterns will be released for other bottle sizes; all in all the company will produce millions of unique labels.
“Marketers are increasingly looking to use packaging in nontraditional ways to connect with consumers,” David Luttenberger, global packaging director at research firm Mintel, told Ad Age. “Digital printing has been around for 20 years, but just in the past 18 months, brands are beginning to engage in digital package decoration — adding visuals, sensory cues, raised surfaces. It helps brands engage with consumers on more levels.”
In fact, Mintel named “Digital Evolution” one of the six global packaging trends they expect to see in the coming year.
The research company believes “brands and package converters [will] begin to move beyond using digital primarily for limited editions and personalization, and begin to capitalize on its economic and speed-to-market advantages for mainstream package decoration.”
Of course, this is not just true for consumer packaging. We are seeing new forays into traditional print marketing with digital printing as well, and trends suggest there is much more to come.
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