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How important is branding in the food and drink industry?

It is important to first impressions. If the customer takes the first bite with their eyes, then the packaging needs to impress. Packaging is often the first interaction a customer has.

A top 4 UK supermarket decided to rebrand its food and drink products in 2016 under the names of nine farms. Because of their packaging, customers believed that these were real farms and were made in the UK, they discovered that they were attractive to them as an alternative to the branded products that they are used to. This was actually a creative branding exercise that helped increase sales of products made in large factories or imported from overseas. This type of marketing is not something we condone, but it does show the power and influence of food branding.

Research has been conducted to find out what factors influence customer behavior and how they choose to pay at the check-out. Although there are some factors that cannot be changed, there are plenty of variables that can influence purchases. Branding a product is a complex process that involves many elements, including packaging texture and quality, cost, convenience, cooking times, ethical credentials, and cost.
Make your mark (for the right reasons).

Standing out from your competitors is crucial to your product’s success. It’s not about being visually appealing. Customers should be able to instantly notice your product, make a good first impression and feel confident in your company.

Your rosette should be worn proudly
Your branding should reflect your award-winning product. What are you waiting to win an award? Get entering! Research has shown that customers are more likely to buy products they consider category winners, particularly if they don’t know much about the product.
Keep it simple
Few customers are able to compare notes on why one product is better than the other in this fast-paced world. Design boldly and confidently. Choose words that make your product stand out in the category. If they are in fashion, highlight ingredients that you think will be attractive to customers. Highlight the flavour profiles in your food description.
Share your story
Your story is important. Allow customers to get to know your company and you. You can show this on your point-of-sale: perhaps you or your company’s picture could be featured on the label. You can share more information with your customers by using your website or another point of sale.
Rate your experience
You should share rave reviews or praises for your products. This can be done through your website or social media platforms.

Do not create a product line, but an identity.

In the beginning, it may be that you only have one product on the market. If you think one step ahead, your business can be future-proofed. Imagine how your branding might be featured on additional products.

Make sure that your logo is easily recognisable on all your products. This will make your product family easily identifiable.
An easy palette of colours that complement one another (and stands out from the rest) is better than a confusing and chaotic ‘car crash’ of color. You should consider the colour of your food products and beverages, especially if they are in glass or see-through packaging. Consider how these may compare to other coloured labels and packaging.
You should ensure that any supporting graphics are professionally drawn and high-resolution so they can be scaled up to fit different sizes of products and points of sale.
For packaging or label information, use a simple font that is easy to read.

Professionals are available

Product branding is no different from the old saying “You get what you pay” Although you may have a neighbor, friend or colleague who is an occasional user of Adobe InDesign, Illustrator or Photoshop, DO NOT let them take responsibility for the success of your food or drink product. The packaging is what consumers are looking for. They want quality products that taste good and have lots of flavour. Professions are the only way to make a product look professional.