For food manufacturers, the most elite products on the market have packaging that speaks for itself. Stephen Heller, who has written several books on American consumer products, told NPR: "Coca-Cola is not a bottle of soda — it's Coca-Cola." Whether your company makes canned tomatoes or peanut butter, designing labels with a high degree of brand awareness is a way to make deliberate overtures to consumers. The most successful food manufacturers have elevated the status of their packaging to American iconography.
In an NPR blog post, Tove Danovich collected images of some of the most memorable products in the American supermarket, whose design sets them apart as national traditions. From the Tootsie Roll wrapper to the Pringles can, many brands have crafted identities so specific that they've earned a distinctive place in public awareness.
One would expect most of these brands to communicate sunny, attractive messages. However, the Morton's Iodized Salt box was singled out for its dark, somewhat obtuse branding. Recently the brand celebrated its centennial and maintains the same "When it rains, it pours" slogan. Rather than alienating consumers, the company has established a strong following in homes across America, who have come to purchase Morton's salt almost by default. Its sizeable market share is largely due to clever marketing.
"Brands today can't touch this kind of magic," said Ellen Lupton, senior curator at the Smithsonian's Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum. "It married a memorable, almost philosophically dense advertising slogan with a beautiful, functional package."
Companies with ambitious brand ideas should purchase an industrial label printer to take their food labeling to the next level. With creative brainstorming and complete control over custom label strategy, companies can articulate their central messages in memorable, ingenious labels.