Wearables have been heralded as the next frontier for technology. While the success of Google Glass might be up for discussion, the same doesn’t apply to fitness trackers. Particularly when it comes to FitBit. There are a ton of trackers out there, but FitBit seems to retain a magic hold on the public. I was an early adopter to the wearable trend, and loved my FitBit from the get-go. I recently upgraded to the Blaze (my third upgrade within five years or so). It’s always great to see a company invest in great packaging, and FitBit includes some great options in their magnet boxes.
Qualities of Magnet Boxes
Magnet boxes are durable and appealing to the eye and the touch, as well as a popular option for retail custom boxes. They can protect goods without extra protection. The FitBit Blaze also features a paperboard sleeve around it in white. The magnet box, in a contrasting blue, has no marks beyond the FitBit logo on the magnet flap. The custom sleeve design is where the main marketing focus comes into play.
The FitBit Blaze custom magnet box has laminated finishing, which makes the colors bright and vibrant and draws the eye to the picture of the object inside. It’s a little bit of that Apple austerity, but the ‘Gold Series’ calls attention, as well as the iconography. The text is kept to a minimum, but there are some features included on the front, with more on the back.
The main features included on the front are the ones that make the Blaze different from the other models. It’s a good move to illustrate those things up front. From a consumer perspective, it’s always a concern regarding how different models are from each other–especially when there’s a price difference of $100. This allows a shopper to view the differences without having to grab each one, turn them over, and compare that way. All they have to do is look at the display and get an idea for what the product looks like and what it can do for them.
Looking at the custom sleeve box in more detail, the back offers quick bits of information in a bullet-like style, enabling shoppers again to get the gist just from a quick scan. One of my favorite features on the box is along the side. Sizing can be problematic for anyone. I have, really, no idea what the circumference of my wrist is, so when the specs say that a small is XX inches and a large is XX inches, it means nothing to me. But FitBit takes that brain-buster out of the equation by including a wrist sizing tool on the box. This tells customers what size they should purchase. Without having to track down a tape measure.
Custom Packaging for the Future
When it comes to wearables, the options are limitless. While one might think that the packaging should be something more sophisticated, or stark, or whatever, it shouldn’t come at the expense of the user. FitBit does a great job integrating function with design, especially when it comes to helping shoppers understand the differences in their products.
Valentine’s Day is a day originally meant to honor Saint Valentine. But since the days of Chaucer, it’s been associated with love. Or, to call a spade a spade, it’s associated with the giving of gifts. Flowers, chocolates, anything heart-shaped and/or expensive. It’s a holiday made for luxury gift packaging.
(Yes, we know it’s not *made* for giving gifts. Gifts are just the byproduct, the natural progression from courtly love).
Fine Chocolates Deserve the Finest Custom Cigar Style or Two Piece Setup Box
It’s easy to pile chocolates into a bag, tie it shut and call it a gift. Or to pick up some mass-produced box of waxy chocolates. But if you’re going to give them as a gift, take it from us: invest in good quality chocolate and good quality dessert boxes. The classic chocolate box? A cigar style box, with turned edges and imprinting. It’s true that you shouldn’t judge a book by its cover, but when it comes to chocolates, the box can be an indicator of quality. Two piece setup boxes are the other traditional style, as you can see to the right. Trust us, it’s worth the extra effort.
Luxury Gift Packaging for Engagement Rings
It probably doesn’t surprise you that Valentine’s Day is the most popular day to get engaged. It’s estimated that 6 million people agree to take the plunge (and not in a second-bottle-of-wine kind of way). The focus in any engagement is on the ring, naturally, but don’t overlook the significance of the box, either. The box holds sentimental value as well, and makes for a great keepsake. The standard style, a hinged magnetic box, can be further customized with names, a quote, or some other bit of content you share with your (hopefully) new fiancee.
Other Types of Luxury Items Require Luxury Packaging
Of course, Valentine’s gifts run the gamut outside of rings and chocolates. The item below is a luxury-brand lotion in a custom two piece setup box. Ideal not only for spa-day indulgences, but the box for the lotion itself only adds to the gift. Not to mention the experience of opening it. Lotion in and of itself isn’t the most exciting gift…until it arrives in a fancy box, right? Think of other items in which luxury gift packaging becomes an arena for differentiation. Watch boxes. Perfume or cologne gift boxes. Even electronics have jumped on board. Samsung and Apple are just two tech companies that have adopted an iconic, customized packaging style.
Celebrating Valentine’s Day in the Modern Era
All of this isn’t to say that enjoying Valentine’s Day means spending money. But purchasing things of a certain quality entails spending a little money. If your valentine isn’t worth it, who is?
(This story won’t sound relevant to recyclable boxes or setup boxes, but I promise it’s getting there)! Last December, I received a glass tumbler from Starbucks that I absolutely loved. Although it technically *just packaging,* I also loved the box it came in. Starbucks does a great job creating attractive packaging, and their two-piece setup boxes for the holidays are durable and always feature rich colors. Each year has a different color: last year was red, this year was green, and so on. They also design a brand new series of tumblers every year, so when they sell out, they’re gone forever.
But I used the setup box to package another gift, keeping the lovely tumbler for myself. However, maybe as a lesson regarding growing too fond of things, I accidentally dropped the tumblr at a gas station in sub-zero temperatures. It shattered. I was sad, and I must have mentioned the fact to my mother (we bought the tumbler together).
Lo and behold, this Christmas, I took the wrapping paper off a present. I recognized the red box, but in the back of my head, I knew that the gift boxes from Starbucks this year were green. I opened the box, and there it was. My shattered tumbler, which she had found online, whole again. Added bonus: I got to keep the box this time around!
As the major December holidays pass, most households are left with a lot of new things which need to find homes as well as a lot of boxes and wrapping paper. Recyclable boxes aren’t a problem (wrapping paper is another story, since the majority of it isn’t recyclable). There are plenty of ways to take sturdy gift boxes and repurpose them around the house.
Tips for Reusing Recyclable Boxes
The easiest thing to do with when you receive a nice gift box? Reuse it for its intended purpose. The wrong attitude is to think of it as someone else’s problem; rather, think of it as spreading the joy of a nicely-packaged custom gift box.
Use it as a desk organizer
Full disclosure: This is how I’m using my own Starbucks setup box. My workspace at home has drawers with organizers, but I’m always looking for something to help me out on top of the desk that doesn’t look like it came from an office supply store. The red box is colorful and not too big. It’s made of sturdy chipboard with sharp edges, so I know it won’t look battered in a few weeks. It’s perfect to hold my oh-so-necessary supply of Gin-Gins, lip balm, favorite fine tip marker pens, and other random necessities, all in one place.
It’s nearly time to pack up all those holiday decorations. Use the sturdier of the boxes you received to switch out any older packaging that’s starting to wear, or to keep any new items safe. In my house, the holiday decorations are pretty secure, in one spot, but occasionally there might be some jostling. Keep your memories safe and secure with an updated custom gift box.
And When All Else Fails
Break them down and put them in the recycling. Reasonable sentimentality can only go so far. But next year, keep in mind how someone might get some enjoyment out of a nice setup box for their gift.
How do you upcycle recyclable boxes from the holidays?
Influencer marketing, or influence marketing, is a form of marketing that focuses on specific key individuals (or types of individual) rather than the target market as a whole. Think of it as a response to the changing social atmosphere and outlets available to people. Anyone with Wifi and well-utilized device (it doesn't even have to be a computer in this mobile age) can reach millions via Snapchat, YouTube, Instagram, whatever channel they prefer. Savvy businesses are trying to engage with these people in different ways to promote their products. This usually takes the form of influencer kits.
Influencer kits are a new take on a sales kit. Rather than specifically *sell* directly to a consumer, these kits are designed to appeal to a very specific market segment. They should include content that speaks to influencers and, by proxy, their audience. Construction of the kit should also embody the brand. Typically, a cigar style box is used since it creates a kind of stage for the products.
Create a Strategy to Maximize Influencer Kits
Research Your Influencers You can't send out influencer kits without knowing who your influencers are, can you? Brandwatch has a few suggestions for tools you can use to find influencers. At the bare minimum, they need to be involved in your field or have a relationship with your brand.
You subtly enter their sphere by engaging with their content. Comment in a positive way on blog posts and like Instagram pics. Even as a brand, you don't want to come across as robotic or disconnected. That's pretty much the opposite of how to build relationships.
On that note, take the time to consider their likes, dislikes, and personality features. Do they exemplify your brand, and the message you want to get across? Use this information not only to create your influencer list, but to start putting together an influencer kit that speaks to them. Start with a blank slate, a custom cigar style box. The trays inside can be customized to whatever products you choose to share. The flip-up top (which can be magnetized for extra oomph) is the perfect spot for instructions, tips, ideas, hashtags, any extra information.
Research to find influencers within your market segment
Contact potential influencers to gauge their interest, any fees, etc.
Send influencer kits to your carefully-selected list
Continue to cultivate the relationship and monitor ROI
Contact Your Influencers Connect with them where they are for the first contact. As users and email filtering have become more sophisticated, it's less and less likely that they'll respond to an email sent out of the blue. It's like cold-calling: no one likes it, and it's more annoying than anything. If they're primarily active on Instagram, send a DM; LinkedIn, send InMail, and so on. If they're interested, they'll let you know.
This is also a good time to figure out how much you're going to spend on influencers. Some can demand a pretty penny for a post featuring your product--see the Kardashians' promo posts, which are rumored to cost somewhere into six figures--and others might do it for the products alone. Take it all into consideration when putting together the product part of the kit. Be honest with your intentions, too.
Cigar box presentation kits can be customized with a few different kinds of inserts, so products are guaranteed not to shift or break in transit. Precise, diecut foam inserts are elegant and recommended for more fragile products. Thermoformed trays provide a frictionless fit and ideal accompaniment for electronics and inserts.
Send Out Influencer Kits
By this point, you know what makes your influencers tick and built a positive relationship with them. Now's the time to deliver--literally--and the impress the pants off of them. Your products should speak for themselves, but you can delight them from the second they receive the influencer kits with some added luxury customization. Cigar boxes can withstand a lot of our custom options, including embossing, foil stamping, silkscreen printing, and more. Check out Sunrise's gallery for more ideas.
Post-Influencer Kit Relationship
Like any relationship, no one wants to feel used and abused. Continue to cultivate the relationship and show that you value them as consumers, and by extension, their followers as well. It boils down to creating mutual respect. Even if you don't plan on sending out more influencer kits (to the same people, at least), find other creative ways to engage with them.
And, of course, the important part of any marketing initiative...calculating return on investment. Compared with pre-influencer kits numbers, how have things changed? Is brand awareness up? Are you connecting with a broader audience? Are sales up? Compile the metrics you use to measure success, and plan from there. And for help creating your influencer kits, contact a Sunrise representative today!
Cosmetic box sets are usually a way to get a little more bang for your buck. Sometimes there might be exclusive shades or add-ins, or a make-up bag, or some other kind of hook for consumers. One brand that bucks this trend, especially when it comes to cosmetics, is Dior. It’s rare to see their products discounted in any way, and buying a set (like the Backstage Pros Gift Set) doesn’t save much more money than buying each product individually.
I don’t mind this, to be honest. I would rather buy shades and products that work for my skin without feeling pressured to buy a set of which I would only use half of the products. However, I am a sucker for great packaging, and the Dior Backstage Pros Solution cosmetic box is gorgeous. It’s classy and understated, and clearly high-end. Two piece setup boxes have a rigidity and sturdiness that elevates them from something that goes out with the recycling to something in which you store keepsakes. And that’s true even if it isn’t emblazoned with ‘Dior.’
“Instant French manicure/brightening effect”
Full disclosure: I wouldn’t have bought the set if it didn’t work with my skin tones, but luckily, 001 Pink is one of faves. It’s subtle and slightly plumping without being overwhelming, and it works on a variety of skin tones.
Same goes for the 001 brow styler, which gives a natural brow look. Unlike cheaper pencils, which give off too much powder or waxiness. Some online reviews have criticized the amount received for the price. When it comes to make-up, I’m a firm believer that quality is more important than quantity. However, I will admit to not being 100% sold on the Maximizer mascara. My eyelashes are very fine, and this tends to add more gunk than desired volume to them. It’s entirely possible I need application lessons, but this is the only product in the cosmetic box that I wouldn’t purchase on its own.
But back to a high note: Dior’s nail glow is worth every penny for ladies whose nails tend to chip otherwise. Reviews have noted the strong acetone scent, but c’mon…it’s nail polish! The shade works for my nails, leaving the nail tips looking whiter and rest slightly pink, as promised with the instant French manicure advertising. I know, I know, I didn’t believe it either, but try it out.
Cosmetic Box…Not by Sunrise (but just you wait)
This cosmetic box isn’t a product by Sunrise, but we do a pretty bang-up job with custom setup boxes. We’ll have some exciting news regarding this particular style in the next few months, too…so hold onto your seats in anticipation.
When I report on a game for this blog, I try to make sure it ticks a few boxes. For one, it needs to have depth; a plot or mechanic of sustenance so that I actually have something to talk about. It needs to be entertaining, for obvious reasons. And, perhaps most of all, there needs to be something noteworthy about the packaging.
The game I played this weekend is called T.I.M.E Stories, published by Space Cowboys–and it didn’t just tick all the boxes, it punched through them. Especially in the packaging department. Calling this game box “noteworthy” is an understatement.
But we’ll get to that in a bit. First, let’s see if I can sum up T.I.M.E Stories. Oh boy.
Stories Old as Time
Describing the story of the game is tricky. Not because the game lacks a plot (the exact opposite actually). In fact, the plot is so deep that half the fun is just making your way through the twists and turns in the story. The premise is that you’re a temporal agent of the T.I.M.E. Agency. So, yeah, it’s a time travel game. Those are rare enough in general, but T.I.M.E Stories is truly a gem. As a time-travelling cadet you are transported back to a time in history to fix some sort of disturbance. In the case of the base game, the destination is a mental asylum in 1927. All you know at the outset of the game is that something is going down and you need to handle it.
Want to know what it is? Tough. For one, the unfolding story is the ultimate mechanic. To spoil that is to ruin the game. And for two, well, my gaming group and I didn’t exactly beat it yet…
That’s right. Our first mission was a failure. But that’s the beauty of time travel. You can go back again and again until you get it right. And, believe me, you’ll want to go back.
If you didn’t guess, T.I.M.E Stories is cooperative. You and your team are trying to unravel the plot together via choices, puzzles, conflicts, and plenty other creative twists that you won’t see coming. As in all games, your choices are still your own and there’s always points of contention with your teammates at some point. But much like variety is the spice of life, competition is the spice of games–even co-op ones.
If you’re thinking But can I ever play again after I beat the story? welcome to the 20 straight minutes I spent in the game store trying to decide if it was worth it. But having played it, I can tell you that answer is a resounding yes. For a number of reasons, actually.
First of All
Good luck beating it on your first run through, hot shot. There are so many twists and turns in the story that even if you do come out victorious on all the challenges your first time through, you still probably missed a lot of side quests and scenarios. If you play again, your goal should be to discover those extra rooms, clues, and items. Or, if you did discover everything, next time do it faster. That’s the whole point of the T.I.M.E. Agency. Trying to achieve that “perfect run.”
There’s a dice-rolling element. I’d call it a combat mechanic, but there’s a lot more gray area in this game than just cut-and-dry combat. The clever and tension-building dice roll mechanic will make any replay a different adventure altogether.
There are more scenarios available utilizing the base set. Currently, there’s 3 available stories beyond the Asylum scenario, each with their own characters, plots, items, and quests. The stories have an end but, potentially, the game is endless.
Though, technically, it is a story-based game, meaning once you’ve played through, you get what’s going on. But much like a good movie you watch again, or a favorite book you come back to, eventually you’ll want to relive the experience.
Of course if you only play to play it once through, it’s very easy to savor the flavor of this game. That’s where the ingenious packaging comes in.
The Story on the T.I.M.E Stories Box
Image: Space Cowboys
I’ll start with the visuals. In a word: perfect. The custom game box is unbelievably eye-catching. Much like Tokaido, it favors the minimalist approach. But T.I.M.E Stories’ box makes Tokaido’s box look like a Jackson Pollack painting. Stark white with a simple, nearly-invisible font that ensures you’ll have to get up close and personal with the box to find out what it is, the biggest visual component is a right-skewed rendering of one of the time travel pods.. A subtle sliver and a hint of things to come. Perhaps my favorite aspect of the outer packaging is the use of both matte and gloss laminations, creating two different textures–one soft touch, one smooth–in conjunction with the crisp turned edges. If you turn the box over or unbox the game itself, that’s when the colors really start to pop. The gameboard itself is beautifully minimalist as well, allowing the beautiful era-appropriate artwork of the cards to shine once the game is in play. The simplicity of the board also lends itself to the replaying of scenarios. New decks, same board.
But that isn’t the ‘ingenious’ part of the game box.
The really cool feature of this box is the custom thermoformed insert. It’s the definition of unique. Not only does it pack the game components away in a very organized fashion (a huge bonus in itself), the molded plastic insert acts as a ‘pause’ feature, kind of like a video game. Specially-labeled and spaced compartments allow cards and tokens to be put away so that if you need to take a break in the gameplay, you can easily pick up where your team left off. There’s your other replay value factor: much like a bookmark in a book too good to finish, you can stretch the hours of gameplay out as long as you like.
Kudos, Space Cowboys. You thought way outside the box, by thinking way inside of it. Most impressive.
As an avid board-gamer and a packaging aficionado, I have to say that T.I.M.E Stories really is all it’s cracked up to be. Exciting story, nail-biting dice rolls, smart mechanics, high-art graphics, and truly unique features makes T.I.M.E Stories a game for the ages. H.G. Wells would be proud.
What did you play this weekend? Keep up with Geeky Goodies’#WhatDidYouPlayMondays hashtag and remember Sunrise Packaging for all your custom game board and game box production needs.
Minnesota’s own Ramble FX knows that an elegant piece of equipment like their Twin Bender fuzz pedal needs elegant custom packaging. The custom box we crafted for them definitely fits the bill. It truly puts the custom in customized.
This luxurious custom package is a very unique combination of elements. The Ramble FX box is a rigid 2-piece setup box which means it has a strong, durable construction of sturdy chipboard that almost completely telescopes shut. A sliver of the bottom tray remains. This design is as functional as it is visual; the flash of red compliments the box while also providing a handhold for ease of opening. A custom package should always consider having this element or thumb notches for a smoother user interface.
The top or outer layer of this custom packaging sports the impressive Ramble FX logo, brought to life with crisp graphics and protected with a soft-touch lamination. This soft-touch feature ratchets down the glare as well as giving the packaging a high-end feel. When you have your hands on the Twin Bender custom box, you know it’s a fine piece of hardware before you even open it.
The bottom tray has it’s own unique glossy lamination, giving the red a glow while also giving the bottom a smooth, clean texture. The lower tray is fit with a foam insert, die-cut precisely for the pedal and matching the colors of the rest of the packaging. The devil is in the details, as they say.
The Ramble FX custom box has a highly-impactful presence, garnering an appreciation from the buyer that is opening their purchase for the first time, or the onlooker that may be in the market for a fuzz pedal. Truly impressive, unique, and personalized for a standout look. A beautiful frame for a masterpiece of musical equipment, and a testament to the added value of custom packaging.
As always, it was a pleasure to contribute to this truly artful custom packaging presentation.
Customized incentive games are a great way to boost sales at the same time as boosting morale. Why? Because they’re fun. Incentive games are so well received because employees because they’re competitive. They can also take the place of a raise or bonus that just isn’t in the budget. But just like with any game, customized incentive games have rules. Not just for the player, but for the game-maker as well.
It’s Called Gamification.
And it means using elements of game development to promote an increase in productivity. It’s taught in business classes and preached about in textbooks. It’s not just a fun thing to talk about in the breakroom. It’s a trusted motivational tool.
How Can Customized Incentive Games Help?
There are many different variations of incentive games, but customized incentive games set the gold standard. Anyone can tape a twenty over the water cooler and say most sales wins, but what about tomorrow? And the next day? Seems like that would get expensive. And what happens when you don’t put up the bill one day? Chills. But a creative boss can do better (and probably save a little dough along the way) by creating a unique game experience with a board game that is tailor fit to your business. Many companies use custom board games for corporate retreats, team-building activities, meeting a sales goal, or even as a holiday bonus. Later we can get into ideas for customized incentive games, but for now, let’s talk about the universal rules for business owners considering customized incentive games.
This should be an obvious element of customized incentive games. Customized means personalized. A game that is made specifically for your business or trade. Let’s look at the Monopoly model. A standard chipboard game board with a border of squares where players need to progress. If you owned a restaurant, you wouldn’t fill the squares with goals like Be Positive or Promote Synergy. You would want something like Sell 5 Desserts in One Shift, or Sell 3 Bottles of Wine. Be specific. A good game shouldn’t have wiggle room. And while we’re being personal, consider adding some inside jokes or an experience unique to your business.
Nobody likes an unfair game. Customized incentive games are no exception. Incentives are always pretty tensile. Some employees are content with their performance and don’t want to be pushed. But a game that’s fun is contagious. Competition is contagious. Know what isn’t contagious? An impossible goal. No server is going to sell 20 bottles of wine in one night, or 20 cars in a day. A game like that is over before it even begins.
Another problem with taping a twenty over the water cooler? There’s nothing to do. Except your job, of course. But how’s that incentivizing? It’s important to get up out of your chair, especially in an office setting. Even the smallest excuse to be less sedentary is a win. If you’re a CEO of a chain, consider sending a customized incentive game to every branch of your business. Something that can be set up at the front of the office. After a few people get up to move that piece, everyone will want the chance.
Just like any game at a retail store, the package needs to sell. Your employees won’t be sold on a piece of paper tacked to the wall. That’s about as memorable as a staff meeting. Use the opportunities of a customized incentive game to really wow your staff. A durable chipboard game with turned edge printing gives the game a real feel. Like they’re playing a real game. Playing to win.
Which brings me to the biggest rule: the payout. Maybe it’s money. Maybe it’s a free night’s stay at a hotel. Heck, maybe it’s a pair of socks. Whatever the payout is, make sure you can actually pay it out. You customized incentive game is only as good as your word. And if you promise winnings that can’t be paid, you lose the trust of your employees. You get one shot. If your incentive game doesn’t deliver on its promise, nobody will play again.
Experts estimate that 70% of the world’s top performing businesses use gamification to boost their sales. It is a proven method for improving productivity. And it isn’t just for employees. Elements of gamification can be geared towards consumers as well.
The Dagmar box and publication set shown here is a great instance of custom designed rigid luxury packaging. The custom packaging uses minimalist design and extends Dagmar’s branding. The custom box grasps the sophisticated simplicity of the logo as well as the products that make brand recognition possible. Characteristic of successful Swedish fashion brand, the two piece rigid setup box shown here is a luxury packaging design that exemplifies the brand and adds value to the product. Using open space wisely, the graphic design on the custom turned edge box is decorated by the logo and a simple tagline. This custom high end luxury box shows how important extending their brand is.
Premium high-quality custom designed box packaging with visually striking graphics leave a long and lasting impression on your customers long after the initial unboxing experience. Use state-of-the-art printing with custom lamination in gloss, matte or soft touch finishes with innovative impactful options such as foil stamping, embossing/debossing and die-cutting to enhance your brand and market your product packaging.
The SBS paperbox set shown above displays a variety of colors with a custom diecut window. The texture applied on the boxes are all unique and custom. We see examples of rigid two piece boxes as well as lightweight paperboard boxes all designed in a perfect harmony. Some of the boxes are silk screened with 1 color while others are full color offset printed for the utmost impact. This set is a great example of retail ready packaging!