Are you a small business or solo entrepreneur? Do you need a marketing piece turned around quickly in order to meet a deadline? Do you want your piece to be of high quality but not for it to cost a fortune?
Red Paper Plane is the online ordering division of Structural Graphics. It provides clients with an easy and intuitive way to design the high-impact formats we’ve become known for, including pop-up cubes, greeting cards and the Flapper. And you don’t need to be a professional designer to do it! Using our online design tool, anyone can customize the direct mail formats with their logo, photos and text in a fraction of the time it used to take to place art to one of our templates offline.
Just follow these four simple steps:
Choose your format.
Download the template.
Upload your artwork.
Proof and order!
Whether you’re an experienced designer, a marketing professional or a small business owner, Red Paper Plane has created an online experience with your needs in mind.
This is the first installment in our “What it Means to Say I’m a Creative” series, meant to focus on the inspiration and drive behind each one of our paper engineers.
How did you know you wanted to create (in a professional sense)?
I remember since I was around 5 growing up watching cartoons, playing with legos, and drawing especially. My father inspired me since he drew often as a hobby, and I became more interested in pursuing a profession related to art and design during college after learning about its diverse opportunities.
What advice would you give to others who want to work in a creative industry/ position?
My advice would be to show your work to different people especially those whose work you admire and listen to their critique on your pieces. It’s good to be open to constructive criticism to figure out why some aspects work and why some don’t.
What does creativity mean to you?
To me, creativity means looking at things in a different perspective or doing something in a different way. It might help to try different hobbies, jobs, sports or artforms to inspire other methods of thinking or finding something relatable to your primary creative activity. I can relate dancing to design in that both forms allow the person to take certain existing moves or elements and his or her own spin on them.
How do you feel when you tell others you’re a paper engineer?
I feel fortunate when I tell people about my job as a paper engineer because I don’t think there are many companies that have such positions.
What does it mean to say that you’re a “creative”?
I feel more secure calling myself a production artist or paper engineer because creatives can be seen in most professions or positions in a company. Creativity lives in art, design, education, scientific research and development, politics, etc.
The old adage goes something like this: Don’t judge a book by its cover.
Except when it comes to packaging, that is.
Though packaging been around for generations, in today’s digital-savvy, uber competitive retail environment, first impressions are almost as important as the product itself, with innovative, fun, or even weird packaging helping a product to stand out from its competitors. At times, the way an item looks can actually make or break a sale.
Let me tell you a personal story…
Lots of you have probably heard about or even seen those small, egg-shaped EOS lip balms (yup, those ones). Well, I was recently talking with a girlfriend of mine who pulled one out of her purse and started using it despite the fact that she liked some other brands of lip balms better. So, why did she buy this one? Because it looked cute.
Whether it’s an edgy typeface that gets your customers, some cool pops of color or the versatility of an eco-friendly container, we’ve probably all had a moment like my friend here where we’ve purchased something simply because of the way it looks and, more importantly, for our perceptions of how a product will make us feel. (Here’s an example of how the psychology of packaging applies in the alcohol industry).
That’s the whole point.
Packaging, when done correctly, is ultimately what sells your product in the end. It draws attention, sends a powerful message and elicits a specific response from your customers.
Here’s an example of a packaging design we created for Nokia:
So, what’s a marketer to do to stand out from the crowd?
Well, if you’re a devout believer in creating a branded experience for your customers, making your product relevant and increasing your sales, follow these five Packaging Commandments and you just might create product packaging that will outlive us all.
Thou shalt embrace all manners of colors, patterns, textures and sizes.
Thou shalt never forget to think about the customer’s experience.
Thou shalt utilize all available space to the best of thou’s ability.
Thou shalt be playful, be bold, be simplistic – Thou shalt stay true to him/ herself.
Thou shalt always tell a good, compelling and powerful story.
Feeling insanely creative? Give us a call at 860-767-2661 or shoot us an email. Together we can make your packaging really pop.
“Marketing” is a broad term that embodies a wide range of activities and disciplines that promote and sell a product. It casts a wide net that is open to interpretation; and when you throw alcohol into the equation, well things can get a little crazy.
(Wait, what happened last night?)
First thing’s first. When you are marketing in the alcoholic beverage industry, the same basic marketing rules still apply.
Your 4 P’s: Product, Price, Place, Promotion
So, how exactly do these relate to alcohol beverage marketing? Let’s break it down.
At the risk of stereotyping, there are certain alcohols that appeal to a younger crowd that do not appeal to older folk, and vice versa. My dad loves his tried and true Tito’s (really, Tito’s, my dad is your biggest fan – going on 10 years strong which is some serious brand loyalty). I, on the other hand, the millennial in all of my glory, am more likely to try something different simply because the packaging catches my eye.
It’s no secret that our generations shop differently: my dad has been going to the same mechanic for years, whereas I go wherever the deepest discount is, or wherever the most convenient location is.
A study in Australia determined that adolescents were more likely to gravitate towards ‘alcopops’, a.k.a. booze-y drinks that have very little actual booze in them – malt beverages, wine coolers, etc. – because the packaging is designed to look like a soft drink.
Everyone loves a good discount. It is common knowledge that if we will get a discount on buying more, we will buy more (see Sam’s Club, Costco, etc.) whether we really need it or not. And not to much surprise, when we buy more, we consume more. Shots, shots, shots shots, shots, shots, shots shots…
Price discounts and promotions can have a huge impact on volume of alcohol purchases. They can be a key marketing tool for producers and retailers.
Location, location, location. Anyone who has ever been in a liquor store knows that those places can get pretty crowded. So many brands are trying to promote their products on the shelves or even at the register, so it can be hard to stand out and get the consumer to pay attention and make them want to buy.Did you know that companies pay top dollar for prime shelf space in the stores?
But once you have that spot, how do you stand out among the rest of the bottles of the shelves surrounding it?
Diageo was wondering the same thing, so their agency came to us looking for new ideas of how they could boost sales in stores. This was the first time they have ever done anything like this – and viola, they were so successful, that they have already placed their second order!
How exactly do they work? These case tuckers were tucked in between the shelves in between the bottles, promoting and drawing attention to their products.
Case tuckers are a unique way to sell your customer directly while they are shopping, begging for customers attention. These most certainly trump the Sharpie and neon signs you see on every shelf promoting cheap liquor and practically screaming, “DON’T DRINK ME.”
Alcohol promotions are everywhere. Sponsorships, advertisements, commercials, events, the list goes on. Increasingly, alcohol is being promoted more and more via social media.
Do you need to promote your liquor brand, or unveil a new one? A truly exciting and creative way to do so is to host a PR event. And that’s exactly what Bacardi Brands did with when they came to Structural Graphics to create their Dewar’s Influencer Kit!
The Marketing Arm came to us to develop and design this beautiful Dewar’s influencer kit. The kit was for a PR event unveiling two new brands, Craigellechie and Aberfeldy, and showcases each in a storybook format appropriately titled “The Tale of Two Whiskies”.
To read more about this super cool launch, click here!
It’s no secret that no matter what you’re promoting, you need a way to stand out amongst the crowd. Need to reach your audience? Give yourself some height by adding a little dimension to your brand.
At Structural Graphics, we are well known for creating highly visually appealing, dimensional masterpieces out of paper. One of our most popular requests are dimensional houses and buildings, which can be great for making an announcement of a new location (restaurant, business, school, etc.), announcing a renovation, creating a cozy holiday scene – the possibilities are endless!
Whirlpool’s 360-degree approach to marketing, incorporating web, TV and print, has made it’s brand presence more relevant and attractive to consumers in the home appliance marketplace. Continue reading →
“The details are not the details. They make the design.” – Charles Eames, American graphic designer
Structural Graphics takes a special interest in what retail consumers want to see on product packaging, so when we came across Deborah Ginsburg’s article, “Top Packaging Design Trends for 2015” we perked up, eager to see what insights the founder and CEO of Strategia Design had to offer. Turns out, we couldn’t agree more. Continue reading →
Margie Dana — author of three books on printing and print buying and an industry veteran with more than 15 years of experience — recently chatted with Structural Graphics to help inform our audience about different ways marketers can extend their brand’s influence through integrated print campaigns. Continue reading →