Let’s get physical in designing brands

I appreciated Glenn Tutssel’s article regarding successful brands and their design elements (DW 24 March). He mentions the impact of structural design on the equity of a brand. However, I would disagree that it is a costly exercise. It can be the most cost-effective investment a brand can make to defend itself from would-be copyists.

Brands are investing more and more in the structure and materials of their packaging to create distinctive design equities. In the cola sector retailers can easily copy reds and lettering styles to water down brand differentiation. They are not prepared, or able, to invest in physical packaging, as Coca-Cola has done, with its PET version of its classic glass bottle.

Our recent designs for the Schweppes “frosted” PET bottle and the short and powerful Jif Microliquid bottle have created individual personalities which have become key to these brands’ communication, play a strong role in advertising and clearly differentiate them from competitors.

A brand logo, colour and graphic styling are regularly updated with all the related costs in both design and print fees. However, its structural form, as in the case of the Jif Lemon or Perrier bottle, lasts for generations.

The most memorable branded packaging is a marriage of the physical shape and its graphic communication. Investment in both keeps brands competitive.

Bill Wallsgrove

Creative director

Planet

London W6

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