PACKAGING COPY | THAT’S A WRAP
Packaging is a competition in visual aesthetics. We accept (or reject) the package long before we acknowledge its contents. If the packaging copy is enticing we take it to the next step, and that is to find out what’s inside, by reading what’s outside. That’s when packaging copy shines.
Structural designers spend several weeks, sometimes months, crafting the packaging structure to make it just right. The package then goes to the graphic designers who add the graphic elements – colors, illustrations, pictures, and sketches. A packaging copywriter works with both groups of designers to consolidate the identity of the brand and communicate it through the words (and typography) that go on the package. in general, the number of words is the most restricted element on packaging, owing to the severely limited space on which to write.
What space is left must be shared with mandatory legal and proprietary information that most countries require as part of the packaging copy. This leaves a packaging copywriter with just about enough space to play with a few characters. It would seem like a problem except that it’s not. A good packaging copywriter knows how to balance character quantity with limited space and still get the message out loudly and clearly.
Intrinsic knowledge of the brand and its consumers is essential. What is written on the packaging has to speak about the brand to the consumer and the content’s benefits as well. A wide vocabulary and linguistic knowledge is helpful; okay critical in creating packaging copy that works. The best packaging copy is non-intrusive among the other elements, and plays a vital role in consolidating and communicating the benefits of the product, which makes all the difference between a product for sale and a product gone stale.