The Lab, part of Stratego Group in Italy was set up in partnership with DMA Italia, a data and marketing association, two years ago, as a platform to bring the printing industry together to realize innovative marketing projects and personalized packaging.
Speaking at LuxePack Monaco last week (September 30-October 2), Enrico Barbologlio, CEO, Stratego Group, a hub of publishing expertise, event, research and marketing for the print and communication markets said the Lab ‘observes the whole printing market from office to commercial and transactional printing from publishing to labeling, to packaging, customized and industrial printing’.
“We all belong to the printing communications market but when we go home and finish work we are consumers. We surreptitiously receive 5,000 messages a day through our packaging via different media channels and we want to deepen that through the printing industry using new printing technology,” he said.
“The primary focus of the consumer journey is to play on our emotions via the five senses according to Millward Brown, Sense research, as well as personalization and engagement. It’s a non-stop dialogue.
“Research by California Polytechnic University found 81% of people touch a product before buying it. We are finding soft to touch products are 50% more expensive but consumers will pay more to buy it. We are moving into a market of personalization and 50% of millennials and Gen Z express a desire for this. But in order to personalize products we need to obtain data.”
Brand Revolution Labs
- 13 Italian agencies; Artefice Group; A-Tono; Conversion; Coo’ee Italia; Creostudios; DLV BBDO; H2H; HUD; Idealogy; O,Nice Design; Studio Martinetti; The 6th and The Embassy.
- 11 printers; ACM; Goglio; Graphicscalve; Kimiprint.com; Litocartotecnica Ival; Maer; Nava Press; O-I; Pack.ly; PressUP; SacSerigrafia.
- 4 suppliers; Gruppo Cordenons; Hp; Luxoro; Stealth-Code by BeeGraphic.
- 15 projects
Valentina Carnevali, project manager, Brand Revolution LAB, said the platform is open to everybody and it selects 15 communication agencies who choose a customer to organize a communication campaign for them, helping them to overcome two constraints of budget and time.
“We want to set up a pool of print experts and support and implement the projects for companies taking part in the scheme. The projects run from November to June for eight months with an exhibition to showcase what we have achieved at the end,” she said.
“In 2020 the exhibition will be extended to two days to see the prototypes on display. There will also be Brand Revolution Lab (BRL) Talks on best practice. As soon as our clients know what technology can do for them they want to know more about the printing industry and explore that further. We are expanding the event from one to two days due to the positive reaction to what we are doing.
“In September we start selecting the agencies we want to work with, then organize training followed by briefing their customers from concept to completion.”
Last year Brand Revolution Lab partnered with 13 agencies and carried out 15 projects including; Mercedes-Benz, Skittles, Krupps and Jeri’s Farm.
Fabio Paracchini, chief strategy and innovation officer, The Embassy, one of the Italian agencies taking part in the project said the world is changing and a good example of this change is Swedish activist Greta Thunberg who confronted US President Trump recently for not doing enough to tackle climate change.
“It’s so good to see young people getting angry. We have a global emergency it is true, and what should brands do? ‘A clever smart brand should say ‘sustainability is our responsibility’, it’s simple,” he said.
“We have to do something. We don’t see the real scale of the problem as an emergency because it has been happening for a long time.”
The latest projects by the group include a project conceived by H2H, creating a limited edition luxury bottle designed by O-I, for Mercedes Benz, originally bottling its engine oil but with plans to launch a bottle of gin.
The premium engine oil of Mercedes is presented in a standard premium bottle manufactured by O-I, customized through O-I : EXPRESSIONS. Its logo, brand and product name are in relief, with an iconic black handprint of a mechanic, giving the container a premium touch and feel.
Each of bottles were personalized with every customer’s name, providing a superior and individualized experience. Other partners in the campaign were Nava Press and Stealth-Code by Beegraphic.
“Thanks to this project we emphasized the quality of the Mercedes-Benz Oil, the product designed for the customer offering the best result. The handprint on the bottle conveys the idea of the engine maintenance,” said Monica Magnoni, communications and marketing, sale & marketing unit, H2H.
“Through this concept, Mercedes-Benz had the opportunity to highlight this product – generally recognized for its quality and meet the customers at its core brand.”
Carnevali said Jeri’s Farm is a legal hemp farm still under licensing, marketed at global level and the company is expanding.
Currently a nursery and flower company processing legal hemp for recreational use the owners want to go beyond this into a luxury segment, with its distilled alcohol and tobacco products, providing customers with an experience that goes beyond tasting the product and dismisses perceptions of the product, with personalization and a tasting box using augmented reality.
Design agency HUD, together with ACM, Litocartotecnica Ival Technologies and HP Indigo came up with a gold embossing on the design for a premium feel.
'New forms of recreation'
According to Spiros Malandrakis, industry manager, alcoholic drinks, Euromonitor International, cannabis is the largest competitor of alcohol because the next generation of millennials and Gen Z are perceptive to the concept of alcohol but their fear of losing control is restraining their overall ‘overuse of alcohol’ and they are looking for new forms of recreation that are ‘more soft and manageable’, so the forecast for the future is the alcohol and cannabis markets will become one.
“Jeri’s Farm works on the production of legal cannabis and its derivatives. To launch the brand’s image, HUD worked on a special edition that also encourages the discovery of the line. The design of the packaging was enriched with enhancements, typography and iconographic details with a vintage appeal, which recalls the world of wine, spirits and tobacco, in which tasting is an integral part of the customer experience,” said Carnevali.
“The pack comes to life by scanning the code on the front, revealing a world in augmented reality that adds informative content as well as allowing the user to select their favourite variety to share with a restricted circle of tasters.
“A fourth personalized envelope contains an entry card to the club and an invitation to an exclusive event.
“For the Jeri’s Farm project, ACM created three Doypacks matching the colour of the outer box with a metallicized material to simulate a gold leaf. In addition a flat envelope has been produced with three zip closures and easy opening.
“All the envelopes were printed on a digital HP Indigo 20000 and the luxury box was created by Litocartotecnia Ival in association with a third-party company that carried out the printing with two passages of hot-stamping. The first with gold ribbon and the second with white ribbon for the texts and relief.”
Tea box boardgame
Another design, by The 6th for Yam112003 in association with Goglio, PressUP and HP Indigo involves a limited edition tea box which turns into a boardgame, similar to ‘Guess Who’ and ‘Memory’ using tea bag sachets as the playing cards.
“Goglio has produced two types of teabag sachet on triple matched material with opaque finishing,” said Carnevali.
“The product is hermetically sealed thanks to an easy opening system which enables the pack to be opened and not torn, safeguarding it for its final purpose the game. Each version is characterized by a single front, combined with 24 backs each different to the other.
“The 24 sachets of the English breakfast tea make up the fame ‘Guess Who’ and the other 24 sachets for the Earl Grey tea make up the game ‘Memory’.”
The 6th for Yam112003 said turning the tea boxes into board games was the most logical idea because the tea sachets are more or less the same size as playing cards. ‘Guess Who’ and ‘Memory’ are the most popular games and it wanted to something connected with the product, using English icons and faces. In reality this concept is a prototype for now because in real life its expensive to use famous icons of people owing to copyright issues.