Cannabis Kits

Part of the fun of the packaging business is getting to know a variety of industries. From key fob packaging to software FlashPads, there's always something new and exciting being created. It even extends into the realm of political action, as is the case with cannabis kits. 

As of January 1, 2018, cannabis or marijuana is legal in California (with some regulations, of course). HauteSmokes is a startup specializing in smoking accessories for the sophisticated smoker.  We designed packaging that complements their take on the glamour and the *je ne sais quoi* of the industry. 

Cannabis Kits That Exude Glamour & Sophistication

As with any product that requires packaging promotion, we started with the basics. How can we help them promote their business and give their customers a treat to open?

As stated above, HauteSmokes cannabis kits are all about creating a kind of old-Hollywood feel while staying relevant in the modern age that is marijuana legalization. As more and more states move toward legalization, their market is sure to grow. For California alone, experts estimate that legalization will have nearly a $5 billion impact. And Forbes estimates that the industry will create more jobs than manufacturing by 2020!

So when it comes to creating custom packaging that not only meets their current needs, but the potential growth as well, we knew it had to be something innovative, sophisticated, yet somewhat reminiscent of old time glamour. 

Sunrise Packaging started with a magnetic box, or the MagBox, for that element of modernism. Magnet closures are satisfying and delightful for users. They're also perfect for protection for these delicate pieces - no accidental opening for these packages in transit! 

For decoration, the magnetic boxes were wrapped with black ultima. This custom box wrap has a slight gloss, and is smooth to the touch. The gold foil stamping on the box seals the deal. Gold on black is a standard of Art Deco style, the roaring 20's, and old-time Hollywood. Custom box design can be full of references, and we love bringing these elements together for creative projects. 

Get Ready for Growth

Whether you agree with it or not, the legalization of cannabis doesn't appear to be slowing anytime soon. And based on the projected market for it, there's plenty of opportunity as well. Get a head start on your cannabis kits with Sunrise Packaging. Contact us today!

Compliance Packaging Spikes Innovation In Medical Packaging

Compliance packaging is a friendly way to help consumers take their medication on schedule. And blister packaging provides the perfect platform for it. 

Let’s establish why compliance packaging is such an important issue today. If you’ve ever been charged with taking a medication daily, there have surely been days when you forgot about it. Whether that lead to unintentionally skipping a day or just a few hours, it has an effect. Or maybe you’ve been prescribed a device that you’ve been using incorrectly. Inhalers are notorious for misuse. With over half of the US population on some kind of medication for a chronic condition, nonadherence is a big issue. So much so that a 2008 Medco survey estimates that half of those people don’t adhere to the given guidelines for their medication. A year later, the Network for Excellence in Health Innovation cited this as responsible for up to $290 billion in unnecessary costs every year. 

How Thermoformed Blister Packs Aid Compliance Packagingcompliance packaging with blister packs

As mentioned above, compliance packaging makes it easy for users to to take the right dosage at the right time. Here are some examples from the 2016 HCPC Compliance Package of the Year winner of how they used blister packaging in their design. 

The winner created packaging for a two week dosing regimen. The blisters are designed like a calendar, with each box making up two two-week packs. With red arrows leading the user from pack to pack, it’s clear how they should progress and take the dosage. The thermoformed blister packs ensure that the user doesn’t take more or less than is prescribed. 

In addition to keeping the dosage consistent and accurate, blister packs play another role. With the aging baby boomer market, packaging accessibility becomes a consideration.  Being able to open pill bottles requires dexterity and hand strength… Something we tend to lose as we age. Blister packs allow for users of varying strength and dexterity access with ease. 

Implications in Other Industries

While the term is usually applied to the pharmaceutical or medical packaging industries, compliance packaging measures can apply everywhere.  Making retail packaging that’s easy to use, regardless of hand strength, is a standard to which all packaging should be held. Designing labels and lids for thermoformed packaging that inform and educate users is a great use of space. 

What measures has your organization taken to create a compliance packaging approach?

Brand Activation Packaging & Displays

Brand activation. It sounds like someone put all the marketing buzzwords in a bag and drew two out, doesn’t it?

Eye rolls aside, brand activation is an intriguing concept, and one that’s entirely new to marketing as a whole. It’s about making increasing engagement and interaction through an experience, ultimately raising awareness and perception. It sounds like it might be just for new products or brands, but that’s not the case. 

What sets it apart from brand marketing is that brand activation is tied to some sense of change. It’s about revitalization, reinvigorating, bringing life or a sense or something new back. Brand marketing is ongoing promotion; brand activation is a jumpstart. It applies to you whether you’ve been in the business for ages or just starting out. POP Displays for brand activation

Per April5, a brand activation campaign typically includes some elements of: 

  • consumer promotions
  • experiential marketing
  • shopper marketing
  • digital campaigns
  • sampling campaigns

Building a Successful Brand Activation Strategy

The best initiatives are strategic and driven by return on investment (ROI).  Activating your brand should be strategically embedded in your marketing mix, not assigned or done as a standalone project.  This allows your organization to budget appropriately and align objectives with existing measures for success.  You can also use research previously done to sound out a campaign before rollout. 

But this doesn’t mean you should follow existing templates to measure success. As influencer marketing is showing us, it’s not all about sales at the end of the day. Brand activation campaigns generate awareness, brand switching, brand loyalty, and more. It’s more about employing the right tactics to influence behavior, leading to sales. 

Brand Activation Examples

EConsultancy points out a few examples of campaigns which used a variety of channels and touchpoints to connect with customers: 

  • In-store brand activation: Monty the Penguin 
    This campaign featured a wide variety of media, but the in-store activities are what made it blow up. Spaces uses Antarctica as a theme, Oculus Rift-like glasses to create a VR component, a storybook, and more.  Building an in-store experience is our domain–we’re no stranger building displays–and can help create products in line with your vision. 
  • Sampling campaigns: Mountain Dew
    We’ve all avoided eye contact with someone standing on a street corner trying to push tiny samples int our hands. Harrying busy commuters is hardly the kind of awareness you want to build. But Mountain Dew, in their sampling brand activation campaign, opted to go with the flow. They created an experience team that traveled around the country, sharing samples at festivals and popular events. 

These campaigns might not sound like anything overly impressive or amazing. But that’s a great feature of these kinds of campaigns: the innovation lies with the users. These allow brands to use user-generated content for marketing, and they’re the ones who carry it on. 

When you’re ready for some materials in your next brand activation campaign, we’ll be waiting.

Beauty Boxes Make Beautiful Packaging

As packaging professionals, we tend to see the beauty in all types of packaging. Others...maybe not so much. However, there's one variety which nearly everyone can agree upon creates appealing packaging: beauty boxes.

When it comes to the retail space, health and beauty packing needs to be ultra-competitive. Health and beauty products have to appeal from the first glance.  Customers have to be drawn to a product. Sometimes that might happen via word of mouth. A friend, or an Insta-influencer, recommends a product. It starts a chain reaction of the prospect looking for a specific product.  In this scenario, packaging is still important in that it has to hook the buyer for that final step of purchasing.

In another scenario, a customer wants a certain result. Longer eyelashes, smaller waistline, smoother skin. They might have a product in mind, or they might not. This is where packaging needs to make the sale. 

Beauty Boxes vs. the Retail Beast

How a brand chooses to project themself is apparent when it comes to beauty packaging. Some take the hard, gritty approach, like an Urban Decay or Kat Von D design. There's an aesthetic at work here, and a projection for customers.

Others, like the example to the side, take a softer stance. 

These custom cigar boxes feature a digitally-printed wrap with soft touch lamination.  The watercolor design is bright and inviting, while the soft wrap allows users to feel calm from the first touch. The logo is done with a silver foil stamp. It pops more than the printed design, but by enhancing and not overpowering. All of these elements contribute towards a singular perception for the product and company as a whole, echoing that delicate personalization.

Features like these help set products apart in the retail space. Knowing what appeals to your customers is a key part of making the final sale. And it's even more effective when the customers might not be able to describe the effect they want, but know what it is. 

Drive Beauty Box Sales

What we love about creating products like these is how it's never just one single feature that makes the packaging. It's the summation of its parts, like how the cigar opening paired with the soft touch creates a mental invitation. The digital printing paired with silver stamping create a delicate kind of branding on the brain, one that entices the prospective customer to learn more.

What features do you employ to drive health and beauty packaging sales? Contact us today to create your next project!

Software Packaging Case Study

Software packaging can be an ambiguous term. It might refer to how files and resources are digitally packaged together, or a suite of applications, like Microsoft Office. As a packaging company, you can probably infer that we mean it in the most literal sense. However, we do take inspiration from the other meanings of "software packaging."

When it comes to creating packaging for software, Sunrise usually turns to the FlashPad. It's a hybrid style of packaging that brings together multiple elements. It can work as a display kit, a pamphlet, an advertising piece, and of course, a container for products. The small, compact size lends itself well to custom USB drives, key fobs, business cards, anything that can fit within the parameters. 

Sunrise Packaging recently worked with Psychology Software Tools to create packaging for their E-Prime 3.0. Here's how they made the FlashPad their own.

Software Packaging for Your Business

In this example, Psychology Software Tools already had a designer on hand to create the design. Note that if you don't, we're happy to help!

We worked with their designer to get the right specifications and share best practices. Once the design was proofed and finalized, Sunrise got to work assembling the custom packaging solution.

After printing the wrap, we laminate it to give it a shiny finish. Other options include a matte finish, or a soft touch finish.  

The pieces are then cut and wrapped around the FlashPad hard backing, providing support and security to the products. Then the liner, or the inside of the packaging, and the foam. Finally, the product is boxed up and shipped!

As you can see from the video, these FlashPads are fully customizable in almost every way. We've created these as marketing pieces for organizations ranging from colleges to real estate brokers. They're a versatile packaging style that we create with love in Blaine, Minnesota!

FlashPad Love

Check out more examples of one of our favorite packaging styles, the FlashPad. And when you're ready, contact us to create a customized software packaging solution for your organization!

Custom Gift Boxes for All Occasions

While the holidays draw near, anyone tasked with gifting turns their mind toward packaging at some point. While wrapping paper still reigns supreme, there's another option available. A more eco-friendly option, we might add. Gift boxes, especially unique boxes, can be all the decoration a gift needs this holiday season.

Custom gift boxes aren't a new idea, but they've long been the domain of luxury packaging. Think of Tiffany's jewelry, for example. Sparkly diamonds might come to mind, but so does their iconic robin-egg blue box and white ribbon.  In that example, their brand is clear. So much so that a Pinterest marketing effort proclaims, "There is no color quite like this."

 

Customized Gift Boxes

When A/Z Corporation approached us to create custom gift boxes for them, we knew it was an opportunity to build something great. As a company that markets itself as an innovative leader in their field, it was important to match that flair. To match the clean aesthetic of the organization, the set-up box style was chosen. Two piece set-up boxes are often used for high-end electronics, like smartphones and tablets, so there is an implied sense of luxury for the user. 

To enhance the rigid box, we wrapped it in a black ultima. This cover material is rich and gives both depth and contrast when used. Particularly with finishing elements that set it off, like silver foil stamp crowning the package with A/Z Corporation's logo.  Watch the video to get a sense of the unboxing elements.  Minnesota-made packaging at its finest.

While we love this project, there are more things that could enhance it further. A thermoformed insert, or custom foam insert, could add additional protection. And while the rigid two piece setup box is fairly well protected, adding a sleeve to the box adds more real estate for marketing content without ruining the sleek, clean look.  But that's just us working toward perfection.

Custom Gift Box Styles

While the setup box style was perfect for this project, there are many, many other styles of custom boxes that you can peruse to find the perfect one for your product and organization. While you might not initially think of your product as a gift to customers, using a little bit of that aesthetic could bring a new dimension to your brand. Sunrise Packaging creates boxes that can be used as keepsakes.  

It's the time of year when generosity is infectious; give your customers a thank-you that's stylish and attractive. Contact us today for a quote!

 

Nostalgic Packaging: Throwback or Throwaway?

Nostalgia sells, and nostalgic packaging plays a big role in that. 

Utilizing elements from popular design trends of the past is a powerful tool on its own. Certain fonts and colors, image stylings, and more can evoke strong emotions in people. It's becoming increasing popular for products ranging from shoes to soft drinks to market throwback styles or recipes. These tactics allow former customers to re-engage with a product while allowing a new generation to discover it.  In our image-saturated world, something that can grab and hold attention--especially if it's due to resonating with the viewer--is a win for marketers.

As more and more brands jump on the throwback bandwagon, it becomes clear that execution plays a big part in how well a product is received. Fast Company detailed how different brands are optimizing product launches with success or...less than success.

How Nostalgic Packaging Can Bring in Bucks

First off, we love nostalgia in the USA. 

The Journal of Consumer Research reports that we're more to spend money when we're feeling nostalgic:

“We found that when people have higher levels of social connectedness and feel that their wants and needs can be achieved through the help of others, their ability to prioritize and keep control over their money becomes less pressing.”

A post shared by Lisa Frank (@lisa_frank) on

Which explains why adults might love to shell out money for shoes they always wanted as a child, like the Adidas relaunch of Stan Smiths. But why do millenials and Gen Z seek out retro designs and references? Turns out, it's just part of an ongoing cycle. 

Generations are constantly rediscovering past generations. Resurrecting past trends starts with groups creating demand for products that are generally hard. And from there others learn about it and want to recreate the experience. The demand for vinyl, or records, in the past few years is proof of this. While it's infinitely more convenient to stream a curated playlist from a smartphone, people crave the experience that goes with listening to an album from start to finish, reading liner notes, viewing album art. The resurgence of Polaroid and Fujifilm instant photos is another example. 

Products and nostalgic packaging that can tap into the collective cultural memory are the most effective. So much so that some organizations have taken to hiring a kind of 'chief memory officer.' Their primary task? Sorting through company history and culture to reference for product and campaign launches.

When it comes what not to do, the answer is easy: don't force a trend. It's can be risky to bring back an old packaging style without an existing desire for it. But when it comes to custom packaging design, there are plenty of elements to implement to match a design from days of yore.

Ready to dig into the past and find a style of nostalgic packaging that works for you? Contact Sunrise today!

Custom Pads in Action

This time of year seems to bring out the best in people. We're inspired by the holiday season to give more, volunteer more, and appreciate what we have a little more. And when we get to create custom pads for an organization that literally embodies these sentiments, like the Salvation Army, it drives that point home even more. 

For an organization with the relatively simply tagline of 'Doing the most good,' the Salvation Army as an organization is anything but simple. Pursuing a mission of meeting human need without discrimination since 1865, they're done a lot of amazing work: 

  • Assisting around 25 million Americans every year
  • Serving 128 countries around the world
  • Comprising of over 1.5 million members (officers, soldiers, and adherents)

You've undoubtedly encountered a Salvation Army volunteer or two ringing bells outside businesses to get donations. But donating your spare change while hurrying out of the grocery store isn't the only way to help the organization. Planned giving is a major source of funding. To attract new donors in this digital age, the Salvation Army knew they had to move past the analog style of a brochure. Custom pads are the perfect option.

Custom Pads for a New Age

Sunrise Packaging custom pads are sleek, booklike boxes. We use a heavy chipboard for extra impact, and a custom foam insert to hold contents in place. They're the perfect option for a variety of products, from loyalty cards to medical devices to flash drives. 

When it comes to the Salvation Army project, their needs are focused on marketing to planned giving donors. The tailormade foam cavities can hold a pen and a USB drive. The drive contains necessary information on how to make planned gifts from different parts of a donor's financial plan, like:

  • Cash
  • Real estate
  • Stocks
  • Bonds

And whatever might be part of the financial plan of the donor. Additionally, a clear vinyl sleeve was added to the custom pads. This will hold a brochure, postcard, and a business card. 

Custom Pads Drive Campaigns

Custom pads are a great accompaniment to marketing campaigns. They can appeal to those who like to physically handle materials while offering an alternative for those who want to interact through technology. Not to mention that the personalized USB drives can cleanly transfer documents necessary for giving campaigns. 

Additionally, custom pads can even come with a creative sleeve for mailing. Learn more about options for design and finishing by reaching out to our sales team today!

Car Marketing with Key Fob Packaging

Buying a car is, for most people, a process. From the financial considerations to what options are most important, it’s a decision-laden process. Not to mention stressful. At the end of the road, customers want to feel confident in the decisions they’ve made. As they drive off the lot, car dealerships should recognize that there is always another opportunity for car marketing. Key fob packaging and car marketing

Key Fob Packaging & Car Marketing

Key fobs are practically a standard in vehicles today. The use of the fob might vary, from just unlocking the car to starting it remotely, but there’s usually two identical fobs. One on the keys, and a spare. The spare is usually handed over, fairly unceremoniously, in an envelope. Which may or may not feature the brand. 

Sunrise Marketing (Blaine, Minnesota) recently started working with car dealership marketing teams to create a kind of welcome kit for customers. This kit affirms that they’ve made a great choice not only in their vehicle, but choosing the dealership as well. It boosts confidence and makes customers feel secure. 

These presentation packaging pieces, or FobPads, feature the best in our design department. In the examples pictured for Sunrise Auto Family, you can see several elements at work: 

  • Construction: these pads utilize custom thermoformed foam inserts to keep the fob and business card firmly in place. They’re also tied together in the customer’s mind. The pad construction, mimicking our FlashPads, is sturdy like a hardbound book. 
  • Design: car marketing is all about impressions and prestige. We’ve designed a packaging solution that’s intuitive and attractive. Sunrise can design with your brand in mind, and take your vision to the next level. 
  • Content: from the visuals to the words, there’s a message here. It’s adventure on the open road. It’s a warm handshake. A possible future referral for your dealership. Keep it simple, but significant.

Custom packaging for car marketingAdditionally, these FobPads are keepsakes for the customer. The fob is safe in a recognizable space, ensuring that it’ll be kept in the house for a long time. 

Continue Selling After the Car Leaves the Lot

New cars come out all the time. Dealerships exist in nearly every town in America. What makes your dealership stand out?

We know pricing and financing are one thing, but it really comes down to dealership and car marketing. As a family welcomes a new car into their life, so can a dealership welcome them to their family.

Be one of the early adopters in this exciting new opportunity. Contact Sunrise today to start!

 

The Appeal of Throwback Packaging via “Stranger Things”

Sunrise Packaging is proud to be a Minnesota company. We take pride not only in the work that we produce, but the work that’s done around us in “L’Etoile du Nord.”  That includes projects that inspire nostalgia, like any good throwback packaging. 

So it was with no small amount of excitement that, when one of the lead characters of Netflix’s series “Stranger Things” appeared on screen wearing a hooded sweatshirt from none other than our local Science Museum of Minnesota, we were pumped to hear that the sweatshirt would be recreated. 

And it seems that we were not the only ones. The Science Museum of Minnesota’s online store crashed upon the timed release. However, as the social media accounts for the museum reiterated, there was an unlimited supply. All told, it’s rumoured they sold over 80,000 pieces of ‘Thunder Lizard’ apparel in one day. 

If that doesn’t speak to the buying power of nostalgia, I’m not sure what does. 

How Nostalgia Can Inspire Throwback Packagingthrowback packaging

“Stranger Things” is a massive hit for Netflix. Any promotion that can tie back to it–directly or indirectly–is bound to have a leg up in the bid for capitalizing on consumer nostalgia. But it’s not the only example. At the height of AMC’s “Mad Men” popularity, brown liquor (whiskey, brandy, etc) outsold vodka and *clear* liquors for the first time in decades. The ad folk’s penchant for Old Fashioneds, as well as 60’s fashion, influenced a wide variety of industries. 

Don Draper of “Mad Men” fame gave a stirring pitch in season one based on nostalgia, calling it delicate, but potent. When it comes to your business, helping customers connect with your brand is key. This is where nostalgia becomes a powerful tool.

NCR Silver lists some of the ways in which we can learn from the response to shows like these. 

Throwback Packaging Allows Customers to Embrace Something Familiar

Familiarity is one of the most important factors in creating throwback packaging. It might link customers’ back to their childhoods or something else in their minds. This doesn’t have to be a literal recreation, like with the examples above. Taking inspiration within the culture and finding relevant themes can achieve the same effect. 

Look for Opportunities to Blend Old and New

Like we said above, throwback packaging doesn’t have to be an exact recreation. Board games are one example. While games like Clue and Monopoly have been played for decades, they’ve found new ways to entice buyers. Game makers are resurrecting old packaging styles and typefaces, inspiring memories in customers.  However, they’re also adding modern, interactive features that appeal to today’s audience. 

Attract Brand Advocates with Throwback Packaging 

Creating brand advocates isn’t an easy thing for most industries. But from what we’ve seen, nostalgic packaging is one way there. Make sure to include hashtags, social channel handles, and other information is included on custom packaging. Not only does this generate more buzz, but allows you track more clearly as well!