With social media usage surging by up to 61%, restaurants adhering to strict capacity restrictions, and demand for deliveries through the roof – brands are searching for new and exciting ways to engage with consumers. Many of them are turning to experience-driven branding and packaging as a powerful marketing tool. By doing so, they are accumulating a gold mine of user-generated content (UGC) and getting online audiences talking about them.

Katch our top tips below on how to build online buzz for your brand by transforming your branding and packaging:

Do It For the ‘Gram

Woman taking selfie with pineapple and sunglasses (Branding and Packaging)

What happens when an Instagrammable restaurant has to switch to delivery and takeaway-only options? This is a genuine dilemma that many F&B businesses have had to contend with since the beginning of lockdown. A lot of businesses have consequently lost their key USPs, along with opportunities to utilise quality user-generated content (UGC) from the micro and macro-influencers who would usually visit their restaurants.

This has inevitably led them to unwillingly blend in with the F&B delivery crowd and struggle to stand out. If your business is facing a similar dilemma, then it’s time to not only rethink your approach to content and marketing, but to also overhaul your branding and packaging design.

According to a ‘Facebook for Business’ survey, when asked what type of content they prefer to see, 55% of respondents said ‘fun’, 53% said ‘real’, and 53% said ‘creative’. This highlights a huge opportunity for brands to inject more creativity and originality into their content, branding and packaging. It’s time to enhance the customer journey consistently across all your channels, both online and offline.

Create captivating visuals, complemented by a fun and engaging brand voice, while striving for consistency across the board. From your social media pages and website design/branding, right through to the packaging your customers receive – it all matters. By transforming your strategy, you’ll take your content to the next level and, subsequently, get customers posting about your brand.

That Game-changing Touch

Pizza Hut Double Box (Branding and Packaging)

Once you’ve got your audience posting about your brand on social media, whether it’s through photos of the fun and creative packaging they received or reposts of your channel’s creative content, you can take advantage of an abundance of killer UGC. This, in turn, can majorly boost your chances of becoming a viral success story. While this is all well and good in theory, in order to get started on creating your own next-level content, you need to see examples of successful experience-driven content and packaging in practice.

It’s important to do your research before committing to an overhaul of strategy. Take a look at other brands, locally and globally, both in your industry and outside of it, and find out how they hit viral gold. Analyse what the strengths and weaknesses of their campaigns were and gauge how you can adapt or improve upon similar approaches to your own content, branding and packaging.

A great example to get you started is Pizza Hut’s ‘Blockbuster Box’ campaign. The ‘Blockbuster Box’ was a pizza box that doubled as a film projector; customers were able to access free movies by using their smart phones to scan QR codes on the boxes. Even though the campaign was rolled out exclusively for the Hong Kong market, it went viral all over the world, as the media and social media users alike couldn’t get enough of the concept.

Another perfect example of game-changing experience-driven branding is Tomorrowland’s ticket packaging. Every year, thousands of people purchase their tickets for the Belgian electronic dance music festival, and, every year, they flock online to post pictures and videos of the captivating packaging those tickets come in. Don’t believe me? Just search ‘Tomorrowland ticket unboxing’ on YouTube and then take a look at the viewing figures for each video. The first three results alone have a combined viewing total of more than 2.1 million.

Keep It Personal

Hand writing 'Thank you' on a package (Branding and Packaging)

So, you’ve done your research and decided to rethink your content and branding approach; the next step is putting it into action. Focus on amplifying your brand’s tone of voice by adding personal touches to your delivery packaging. By offering customers great-quality, creatively customised packaging, you can significantly boost your brand’s chances of being talked about – for the right reasons – on social media.

If people enjoy the customer journey you provide, then they’ll want to tell others about it. This can also lead to micro or macro-influencers posting unboxing videos or reaction posts for your product. The creativity and uniqueness of your packaging design will be showcased as a result, and word will quickly spread online. From there, your online engagement will soar, and consumer interest will increase, which can also lead to positive media attention.

Don’t forget to include fun and impactful messaging, campaign hashtags and relevant keywords on your packaging. This will help influencers, as well as your target audience, to share the right information about your brand. QR codes are also an effective way of increasing online engagement with your brand. Add one to your packaging that links up to your website or social media pages, with an appropriate call to action, encouraging customers to scan the code for special offers, promo deals, discounts, competitions, or newsletter sign-ups.

Additionally, it’s vital that you show your gratitude to customers through your packaging. Even a small yet sincere ‘Thank You’ note personalised with customer’s name, accompanying the package, can make all the difference. For example, Signal‘s report on brand loyalty highlighted that 79% of US and 72% of UK consumers prefer brands that show they care about and understand their customers on a one-to-one level. In other words, customers who feel appreciated are a lot more likely to be loyal to your brand.

Looking for next-level experiential branding and packaging for your business? Check out The Underdog and get in touch for game-changing creative design, branding, photography, videography, and content creation services?