Constantia Flexibles to Take Packaging Into the Digital Realm
As more traditionally printed products transition to a digital existence, packaging has asserted its strength as a physical item that won’t be disappearing any time soon. But to say that packaging is “future-proof,” would be naïve, as smart phones and online content increasingly impacts consumers’ shopping experiences. That’s why the announcement earlier this month that Constantia Flexibles, a major international packaging manufacturer, is launching an interactive packaging platform is an important step forward in the packaging industry.
According to the press release, Constantia Interactive will combine the creation of “digitally readable packaging material” with a data management platform. Additionally, it will work with brand owners to develop a customized app for consumers to interact with their specific packaging applications.
Generally speaking, the two main functions of packaging are largely considered to be protecting the product inside and providing information to the consumer. What makes Constantia Interactive such an intriguing endeavor is that it seeks to provide both of those services in the digital realm. According to the release, the platform will be primarily geared toward the food and pharmaceutical markets and can provide informative content such as usage instructions and videos, along with anti-counterfeit protection elements.
Providing a digital alternative to the cumbersome informational leaflets often found in pharmaceutical packaging, which can be challenging to read and easily misplaced, will be a welcome alternative source of information for consumers. Being able to access this content via a mobile device will help consumers efficiently find the information they’re looking for, rather than scanning through a booklet packed with information in a very small font size.
Additionally, interactive packaging provides an opportunity for brands to expand their outreach to consumers and communicate with them in new ways. The release states Constantia Interactive will offer a data collection function, which can help brands better understand their consumer base and tailor content specifically for their needs.
While Constantia Interactive is certainly a major step in the right direction toward bringing packaging into the digital world, training consumers to seek out this content and interact with their packaging in a new way could be a challenge. According to the release, Constantia Interactive will work with brand owners to create a customized app for consumers to download and access their specific interactive packaging content. However, getting consumers to actually download the app and start using it will require some effort on the brand owner’s part through a strategic marketing plan. And of course, it will be imperative to ensure the apps’ functionality is as seamless as possible to combat the ever-increasing concern of app fatigue — the trend of smartphone users discarding a mobile app if they don’t find immediate value in it.
But with any new technology, there will always be a learning curve for consumers to surmount. Constantia Interactive and its brand owner customers will need to rely on early adopters to champion this technology and help spread the word about interactive packaging. It will also be important for Constantia Interactive to help its customers develop a marketing plan to let consumers know these new packaging capabilities are coming and to get them excited to make use of them before stumbling across an interactive package on shelf.
Though packaging itself will remain a physical product well into the future, it’s a positive sign to see a company the size of Constantia Flexibles placing a big bet on interactive packaging, giving the industry a needed push into the digital world.