Posts Tagged ‘event’

Intro to Pharma Packaging Course – 6th November 2014

Posted in Anti-Counterfeiting, Design, Design Cognition News, Events, Government, Healthcare & Pharma, Innovation, Legal, Marketing, Materials, Medical Devices, Safety, Technology, Training on September 8th, 2014 by Chris Penfold – Be the first to comment

pharmacyWe are proud to announce and updated and improved one day intensive training course on pharma packaging for 2014!

Pharmaceutical packaging is a very specialised area with its own unique issues and problems. This introductory course will provide delegates with a good basic grounding and appreciation of what is required for the packaging of pharmaceutical and healthcare products – both Prescription Only Medicines (POM) and Over The Counter (OTC) and will have relevance in other affiliated areas such as Veterinary and, to some extent, Medical Devices too.

Whether you know nothing or have a basic understanding, this course will provide you with useful knowledge and insights from experts who have worked in the industry for over 25 years.

For more information – Follow this link to our Training Page to download a PDF flyer

Injection Moulding Course – 23rd October 2014

Posted in Cosmetics & Toiletries, Design, Design Cognition News, Drinks Packaging, Food Packaging, Gift Packaging, Healthcare & Pharma, Innovation, Machinery, Marketing, Materials, Medical Devices, Technology, Training, cost-optimisation on September 2nd, 2014 by Chris Penfold – 1 Comment

lego bricks - cropAnother exciting one day intensive hands-on training course being run by Design Cognition in October.

Injection moulding is used in many areas of packaging component manufacturing and in all sectors including cosmetics, food, healthcare, and toiletries. So this course is applicable to ALL.

It will provide delegates with a basic grounding in the processing of thermoplastics and elastomers by injection moulding methods including multi-shot moulding.

In addition the course will look at the key components that make up the injection moulding tool, including various gate designs and hot runner configurations.

To gain the best possible experience, you will get to see moulding machines in action and handle the tooling moulds themselves.

So whether you know nothing, have a basic understanding or are familiar with this area, this course will provide you with useful knowledge and insights from some of the leading tooling experts in the UK who have worked in the industry for over 40 years.

For more information – Follow this link to our Training Page to download a PDF flyer

New Season of Packaging Training Courses

Posted in Anti-Counterfeiting, Branding, Cosmetics & Toiletries, Design, Design Cognition News, Drinks Packaging, Environmental Issues, Events, Food Packaging, Gift Packaging, Healthcare & Pharma, Innovation, Marketing, Materials, Medical Devices, Safety, Technology, Training, Uncategorized, cost-optimisation on August 27th, 2014 by Chris Penfold – Be the first to comment
creative brain - opening

Open up your mind to new possibilities

By popular demand, we are pleased to announce a new season of packaging-related training courses starting in October.

The first will be Bar Coding & Mass Serialisation, which will take place on 14th October.

Other courses have been scheduled and are presently being developed, including Plastics Injection Moulding and the Packaging of Pharmaceuticals and you can find out about all of them and others on our Training page by following this link: Training Courses.

As always, all of these courses can be run as bespoke events at your own premises, if that would suit you better. As an international training provider, we are willing to consider running events anywhere in the world.

Why not give us a call (+44 115 846 1914) to talk through your own particular circumstances and needs, or drop an email to training@designcognition.com).

All of these courses can be run as bespoke events at your own premises – See more at: http://www.designcognition.com/training/#sthash.gMdIGbAF.dpuf
All of these courses can be run as bespoke events at your own premises – See more at: http://www.designcognition.com/training/#sthash.gMdIGbAF.dpuf

Interactive Packaging Club

Posted in Branding, Business News, Cosmetics & Toiletries, Design, Design Cognition News, Drinks Packaging, Events, Food Packaging, Gift Packaging, Healthcare & Pharma, Innovation, Interactive, Marketing, Materials, Medical Devices, Product News, Technology, Uncategorized on April 28th, 2014 by Chris Penfold – 13 Comments

JOIN THE CLUB – What’s in it for YOU?

bionicwomaneye_2Dear All,
Rapid innovation is happening that will enable products & everyday things of all types to ‘interact’ in some way remotely with people or other products.  New devices and processes ranging from: smartphones and their ‘apps’ through 3D printing & nanotechnology to low cost Printed and Plastic Electronics (PPE), are becoming available that can:     Create new visual effects: including static or moving and scrollable images
    Produce a sound
    Contain embedded data: for instant information; for validating the identity or location of a product or person;
    Enable interfaces that can respond to touch, gestures or motion
    Sense & report on an environment, temperature or condition
    Release a chemical substance in a controlled way
    Gather energy from the ‘air’ ….and much more

Smart ‘things’ will form extended data communications networks and lead to the much-vaunted longer term vision of every product having its own unique IP address and being accessed by other intelligent devices anywhere.  This is part of what has been dubbed the ‘Internet of Things’ (IOT).

A new generation of devices and communication protocols that sit alongside RFID is emerging; e.g. Near Field Communication (NFC), Ultra Wide Band (UWB), ZigBee, RuBee etc.  These promise to deliver real time information on location.

So what are YOU doing about it?

If you have enjoyed the recent Pack To The Future (#PTTF) events with presentations on topics such as  ‘Printed Electronics in Packaging’ and the affiliated IPI events such as ‘Game Changing Developments for Brands and Packaging based on Smart Phones’, we have something very special FOR YOU that I’m sure will be very appealing.

Design Cognition is proud to announce an exciting new partnership with Interactive Product Solutions, and the forming of an Interactive Packaging Club dedicated to this area. In particular the club will help Members to find answers to key questions such as:
•    What applications are other early adopters pursuing and why?
•    What technologies can I adopt now & what are the resource and cost implications for me?
•    Which technologies can be used alone or in combination to address my applications and how?
•    What are the realistic time scales and when will it begin to affect my company?
•    What commercialisation activities or development projects are worth engaging in now?

GET YOUR FREE PROSPECTUS BY CLICKING HERE

So how will we do this?
Club details:
Together we are planning to run a series of special events:
1. A series of Webinars sessions which will will involve presentations by leading technology suppliers from around the world, followed by a discussion of the commercial implications of the developments presented.  A great way for our international clients to participate…..Webinars will cover specific topics or themes as follows:
-    Flexible Displays (battery & non-battery powered)
-    Sensors (biological & non-biological)
-    Controlled Release Devices
-    Brand Protection, Anti-Counterfeiting & Traceability Devices
-    Physical/Digital (phygital) Experiences, including Augmented Reality
-    Consumer Engagement
-    Packs as active tokens in game play
-    Indicative packaging

2. Regular full-day facilitated Working Group Sessions that will provide the opportunity for Interactive Packaging Club Members to develop an in-depth understanding and debate emerging technologies and identify new applications and commercial opportunities.
3. On-Line Interactive Packaging Resource Centre
Via the restricted ‘members-only’ web site, Interactive Packaging Club Members have access to a comprehensive and authoritative dossier of information relating to Interactive Packaging.

GET YOUR FREE PROSPECTUS BY CLICKING HERE

Payment will be via a one-off annual membership fee – see prospectus for provisional details.

If YOU or any of your friends or colleagues would like to find out more, please ask them to send an email to Chris Penfold via:  club@designcognition.com and we will keep you updated as information becomes available over the next few weeks.

Many thanks and we look forward to working with you

Chris Penfold

CEO,
Design Cognition

If this event is not quite right for you, we are always willing and able to run bespoke workshops at your premises anywhere in the world. Let us know if you’d like us to put together a unique itinerary for you.

To find out more email club@designcognition.com
Give us a call on +44 (0) 115 8461914

Smartphones – Brand & Packaging Opportunities

Posted in Associations, Branding, Design, Events, Innovation, Marketing, Materials, Technology, Uncategorized on March 25th, 2013 by Chris Penfold – 12 Comments

smartphonesIf you enjoyed the recent Pack To The Future (#PTTF3) event, you will undoubtedly love this one too. Brian Weeks of Interactive Product Solutions, who spoke at PTTF3 on ‘Printed Electronics in Packaging’, is running a similar event in London that I believe will appeal to you.

Event details:
The theme is ‘Game Changing Developments for Brands and Packaging based on Smart Phones’ & will focus on commercial realities in relation to the impact of smart phones on specific business areas.

Session is designed to be highly interactive and they are operated as ‘working group sessions’ to stimulate discussion and action.

The day will conclude with a facilitated discussion for about 1 hour when we review the presentations and points raised and debate the commercial implications.

Background:
Mobiles are changing the game for:

  • Brands
  • Retailers
  • Packaging converters
  • Security solutions providers

Fact: More than half of mobile phones being used now are Smart Phones – 130 million+ of them are being used in Europe today and the number is continuing to grow rapidly month on month.

This means major interactive opportunities for Brands, their suppliers and solution providers in:
Marketing Communications – Mobile Marketing & Promotions
Product Promotion & Authentication in the hands of consumers.

This new world presents many questions & challenges:
Do you understand how these solutions might work for you or your customers?
Can you afford to ignore the activity & innovation going on in the smart phone-enabled mobile marketing / promotion area?
Has ‘easy’ Product Authentication been on your wish list?

The aim is to enable participants, from across the value chain, to explore how they may exploit new technologies for their companies benefit.

We believe significant opportunities exist for companies, who may have traditionally focused on limited media channels to communicate with their customer, to not only broaden their approach but also use their packaging to maximum effect.

Speakers will include:
1. Introductory session by Brian Weeks of Interactive Product Solutions
‘Bringing Products & Packs into the Digital Space using Touch Transfer Technology’

2. Andrew McPhee of Obvious Engine who deliver technology & products that make the space and objects around you come alive, bridging the online to offline gap for Product Makers, Retailers, Games – Companies and Brands
‘Augmented Reality and the Interactive Product Experience’

3. Christian Guichard of Authentication Industries whose unique tailored solutions for Brand owners deter counterfeit products through a mix of encrypted data and printing techniques -
‘Innovative Approaches to Product Authentication’

4. Glenn Needham of Near Field Solutions will answer the question about how NFC will establish itself for focused Consumer interaction -
‘NFC Product Authentication’

5. Jeremy Plimmer of Product & Image Security Foundation
will present an overview of smart phone enabled product authentication solutions emerging in the marketplace –
‘Smart Phone enabled Solutions for Consumer Authentication & Supply Chain Management’

6. James Bevan of Vandagraf International will present an overview of market sizing and forecasts in the mobile world –
‘Existing Markets & Emerging Opportunities for Smart Phone Enabled Authentication & Brand Promotion’

Some other players invited to participate include: Alpvision, AuthenticateIT, Digimarc, Gentag, Graphic Security Systems Corp, i-movo, Inksure, Popimscode, Printechnologies, Schreiner Etiketten, tesa Schribos, Yottamark and others – Attendance to be confirmed.

For the agenda or more information on the Session, (which is open to non-members and can be attended purely on a single Session basis – you don’t have to be a full member of the Programme to attend) go to the Session webpage

The final Agenda and Session Welcome Pack will be sent out about 1 week prior to the Session.
Numbers are limited to 30 and the fee for attendance(£120 + VAT) can be paid by Purchase Order/BACS or by credit card.

When: 16th April 2013  – 10.00am for a 10.30am start (coffee from 10.00) and finishes at about 16.00.
Lunch is included.

Where: Institute of Materials, Mining & Minerals (IOM3) Head Office, Carlton Terrace in Central London.

If YOU or any of your friends or colleagues would like to come, please ask them to REGISTER BY email to Brian Weeks via:  info@ipieurope.com .

Hope you can make it!

Anti-counterfeiting packaging extravaganza – Design Cognition @ easyFairs

Posted in Design, Events, Exhibitions, Government, Healthcare & Pharma, Innovation, Legal, Medical Devices, Safety, Technology on January 11th, 2012 by Chris Penfold – 12 Comments
easyFairs Packaging Innovations Show

easyFairs Packaging Innovations Show

Anti-Counterfeiting in the pharma industry – Latest Packaging Trends & Technologies

easyFairs, the trade show specialists, are launching a new pharmaceutical workshop which will be making its debut at the easyFairs  packaging shows @ NEC, Birmingham, UK this February. The event will be organised and delivered by Design Cognition and an array of experts from the anti-counterfeiting & packaging industries.

The new ‘Pharma counterfeiting workshop’ will help delegates identify the key issues, and look at emerging packaging trends and technologies, including all sorts of overt (visible) solutions such as holograms and covert (hidden) solutions including various printing, coating and forensic technologies.

Leading thinkers and experts in the industry, will provide an unbiased and independent overview to help attendees see the ‘wood from the trees’. Taking place on 29 February (9.30am – 1.30pm) the workshop is being billed as one of the main highlights of the easyFairs event, which last year attracted over 4,500 visitors.

Amongst the speakers, Anne Dallison, Fellow of the Packaging Society and CTO at Design Cognition commented: “In a dynamic market, as well as providing a fantastic opportunity to get the latest perspective from industry experts such as the MHRA & PAGB on packaging implications of legislation such as the Falsified Medicines Directive and what it could mean for Brand Owners, this workshop will also provide an unrivalled and cost-effective means of networking with industry peers and leading-edge experts from the world of anti-counterfeiting. So if you want to stay one step ahead – you can’t afford to miss this!”

Also speaking at the show will be Jeremy Plimmer, Editor/Publisher at Product & Image Security Foundation and Chairman of West Midlands Packaging Society, who will be focusing on ‘Security Packaging – Is it a necessity or unnecessary expense.’  James Bevan, Director at Vandagraf and Agent for NetEnforcers in Europe will be looking at Internet Security and how to catch the fakers and identify fake sites.

Counterfeiting of products and packaging has become a multi-billion business, toys, dietary supplements, wine and iPhones are among the tens of thousands of counterfeit items seized every year. The speakers will bring the topics to life with real-life, hands-on examples and are encouraging delegates to bring their own packs along for a free counterfeit – audit, which can be conducted separately in a confidential environment if necessary.

Matt Benyon, Managing Director at easyFairs, comments: “Fake goods are certainly big business, especially in all this economic gloom. Intellectual property crime is estimated to be worth around £1.3bn in the UK each year and the Anti-Counterfeiting group, estimate that 12% of toys for sale in the UK are fakes. With ‘fake’ goods being such a hot topic we saw the importance of providing a comprehensive workshop concentrating just on this area, it is vital that packaging companies  help protect brands and retailers against counterfeiting with holograms or covert printing solutions.”

If you are interested in attending the Anti-Counterfeiting workshop you can register for the event here: Online Registration Form

Or for further information and a full list of speakers please contact Chris Penfold, CEO of Design Cognition, on +44 (0)115 846 1914 or email chris@designcognition.com

Delegate Fee: £149 – Fee includes full set of course documentation as well as refreshments and lunch. Places are limited and expected to go very quickly, so book early to avoid any disappointment.

We look forward to seeing you there.

Pack To The Future – Packaging Design & Innovation at NTU

Posted in Academia, Business News, Creative Spotlight, Design, Events, Innovation, Materials, Opinion, Technology, Training on August 24th, 2011 by Chris Penfold – 9 Comments
Packaging Design & Innovation 19th Oct 2011

Packaging Design & Innovation 19th Oct 2011

As many of you may know, as well as running Design Cognition, I am Chairman of the East Midlands Packaging Society (based in Nottingham UK) and in that role, my main focus this year is to entice more of you, our valued members, to take part in events and also to encourage ‘new blood’ into the industry.

We’ve got some fantastic events lined-up, in which you could participate in a number of different ways and at a number of different levels – it’s up to you how far you want to get involved.

Much of it will be FREE and could directly benefit you personally and your business.

You may want to participate yourself, or you know someone else that could be interested. Either way, I’m looking for partners and I’d love to hear from you. The aim of the whole exercise is to help raise the profile of packaging but also to facilitate the integration of academia and industry for everyone’s benefit. So this is applicable to:

Students – who may want to learn & enhance career options

Universities – looking for business avenues/partnerships to help commercialise their ideas

Product development companies, packaging suppliers & design agencies – wanting to keep up with latest technology & also identify high calibre students for job placements & opportunities

The first of our events is on 19th October at Nottingham Trent University, 4.30 – 8.30pm with a free buffet and refreshments (see flyer attached).

All are welcome, members and non-members, but pre-registration is essential – just drop me an email to: chris@designcognition.com

Come along and listen to some exciting & leading-edge talks from the university & from the packaging design industry. Network with industry & academic experts – with various table-top demonstrations, discuss your design projects in an informal atmosphere and get practical mentoring help & advice.

Some of the highlighted topics will include:

Smartphone technology & how it can enhance the consumer experience

Using packaging technology to tackle counterfeiting

University research into brand design

Display technology for packing applications

Design of packaging for reuse / recycling

You can find out more about this and other East Midlands Packaging Society events on our ‘ning’ site:

East Midlands Packaging Society website

and also on our LinkedIn Group & Facebook Pages:

EMPS LinkedIn Group

EMPS Facebook page

This is the first of three planned university partnership events during the next 12 months, so whether in academia or business – You decide how you want to get involved, which could be as a speaker, sponsor, exhibitor, trainer or as a participant – how could it best benefit yourself? I really do think that ‘everyone’s a winner’ with this. More details to follow in future blogs.

If you’ve got any other ideas yourself, let me know.

Chris Penfold

Chairman – East Midlands Packaging Society

chris@designcognition.com

00 44 115 846 1914

Branded Packaging That Delivers – Transform Your Products

Posted in Branding, Design, Design Cognition News, Events, Innovation, Marketing, Product News, Retailers, Training, cost-optimisation on November 3rd, 2010 by Chris Penfold – Be the first to comment
coca cola - branded packaging that delivers

coca cola - branded packaging that delivers

In today’s increasingly competitive marketplace, effective branding is essential.

So we are running a 1 day course to give you hints, tips and pointers on how to make your product stand out on shelf through effective packaging as a marketing tool.

It will explain how to transform your good brand into a GREAT brand and help take your products to the ‘next level’, looking at a number of important aspects including brand values, added value & convenience, rationalisation, pack size, reducing material cost and innovation to get retailer acceptance, drive sales and increase profitability.

9th December 2010 at Biocity in Nottingham, UK

HURRY NOW – find out more & how to register to get an EARLY BIRD DISCOUNT by clicking Branded Packaging That Delivers

Sailing through the Plastiki soup in search of paradise?

Posted in Business News, Design, Drinks Packaging, Environmental Issues, Events, Marketing, Materials, Opinion, Recycling on August 13th, 2010 by Chris Penfold – 10 Comments
Plastiki - David de Rothschild's yacht made of recycled PET bottles

Plastiki - David de Rothschild's yacht made of recycled PET bottles

As we have discussed in previous posts, there is a huge and ever-increasing mountain of rubbish growing in the middle of the Pacific, like a giant festering ’soup’, much of which consists of plastic packaging waste. This has had a massive knock-on affect in the  form of polluted beaches on islands throughout the South Pacific. See our previous article: Great Pacific Garbage Patch article

David de Rothschild is a man on a mission. The offspring of the wealthy banking family, he is one of a new breed of environmental crusaders and entrepreneurs that some are calling ‘Gaia capitalists’. ‘Gaia’ in mythology was the primal Greek goddess of the Earth and aptly a ‘gyre’ in oceanography is any large system of rotating ocean currents (source: Wikipedia).

To highlight the Pacific issue and raise it’s profile in mainstream media, De Rothschild decided to use his family’s high profile  (& money) to build a yacht made entirely of recycled plastic bottle packaging, which he named ‘Plastiki’ (making reference and tribute to the late Thor Heyerdahl’s papyrus Kon-tiki raft which crossed the Pacific back in 1947). Over a four month period he sailed this 60ft catamaran from San Francisco to Sydney, where he landed last week. But his exploits are no shallow ploy to fill aimless days with fun and adventure.

De Rothschild and his ‘Gaia’ friends are driven by a combination of social conscience and economic pragmatism, seeking a ‘paradigm shift’ in the way we live and desecrate our planet. They espouse a new form of capitalism that factors in the environment and social wellbeing as a cost. It considers protecting the environment not only as a moral issue but as a set of design challenges to correct inefficiencies that make the capitalist system unsustainable. Waste, for example, is considered the result of inadequate thinking. If you are smarter about it, and create products that work properly, then you shouldn’t have to throw anything away at the end – should you? The group include Chad Hurley (33) who with his co-founder, sold YouTube to Google for $1.6Bn and has since ploughed some of his fortune into the Green Products Innovation Institute and Jeffrey Skoll, worth $2.4Bn, who wrote the business plan for eBay and has set up the Skoll Foundation to encourage ’social entrepreneurs’ to play a greater role in developing a better world (source: The  Sunday Times).

These are ‘game changers’, who see solutions where others see problems – a new entrepreneurial revolution – one of collaboration something that de Rothschild calls ‘Planet 2.0′. So I feel that we will be hearing a lot more from this ‘band of brothers’ in the future. They mean to ‘rattle some cages’, get us all to think differently and make a real impact by influencing things at ‘the top’. They have a point! Can we really carry on the way we are? For a really ’sustainable future’, for our children and their children’s sakes, things have to change a lot quicker.What do you think?

Chris Penfold

Packaging? You’ve been framed!

Posted in Branding, Design, Environmental Issues, Events, Exhibitions, Gift Packaging, Innovation, Marketing, Opinion, Product News, Uncategorized on July 22nd, 2010 by Chris Penfold – 10 Comments
Phlib (Monkey) Frames

Phlib (Monkey) Frames

So it’s Thursday and it’s time for us to continue our review of High Street Dreams, the BBC ‘reality TV show’ about product branding, packaging & design development and in particular look at ‘Homeware’ and Harry Singer from Somerset with his innovative wall hanging picture ‘Monkey frames’ product.

Harry is a likeable 34 yr old whose idea consists of a fantastic way to display photos using magnets and a metal frame. It was conjured up “in the pub” two yeas ago after ‘connecting’ the thoughts that it’s easy to print photos on-line these days but difficult to display them on the wall. So he made a few ‘Monkey Frames’, as he called them ( a “cheeky, hanging product”), and sold them to friends. The rest ‘is history’ as they say. Before the TV show he’d already spent £4000 developing the idea further, so he was pretty serious about it – a great product that’s really unique. Harry, quoting the likes of Google and IBM, with their straplines “organise the Worlds information” and “a computer on every desk in the home” came up with his own version “get photos on every wall in every home”.

However, after a day spent at Goldsmith’s University on ‘market research’ some interesting issues were highlighted:
1. The name ‘Monkey Frames’ didn’t particularly appeal to students.
2. The modularity (or lack of it) of the system also seemed to be an issue.
So Harry had a lot to think about. Critic Nick Leslau reiterated these concerns about the product concept (being a fixed system for 16 photos) and thought that Harry should rethink it and try to redesign it into a more flexible system. Enter designer Ben DeLeesy, famous for his ‘red carpet’ dresses, who then branched-out into interiors 10 years ago. His philosophy: “The product has to stand the test of time – you can’t just be a fleeting trend”. He now has one of the biggest ranges of ‘homeware’ on the High Street. His thoughts on how to make ‘Monkey Frames’ appeal more to the consumer were: “ingenuity, ambition, hunger & drive. If Harry gets the timing & product right, the £’s & pence will follow big time.” Easy peasy then!

The first job Ben suggested was to undertake a competitor review, looking at products like a ‘shower curtain’ (a hanging photo product). He was quick to point out to Harry, that “It’s not about your love of photos. At the end of the day, this is business!” (Wise words for any new start up entrepreneur). On the flip side, commenting on Harry’s design, he said: “I love them, but you need to break it down into different sizes, not just a ‘one- hit-wonder’. You’ve got to make it more versatile, to reach a broader base. At that point I think it dawned on Harry the amount of work that he still had to do – and in a very short space of time!

To cut a long story short, Harry went away, completely redesigned his product and in the process made it look really ‘tacky’& cheap (to get the cost down) and was pushed (by the HSD evaluating team) into deciding whether to stick with a ‘cheap-jack’ version or as Ben & the team intimated, take it back ‘upmarket’ and redevelop a ‘cheap-jack’ version later. To everyone’s relief he chose the latter – and everybody was happy.

Enter branding agency ‘Heavenly’, who rightly (in my view) affirmed that ‘Monkey Frames’ (as a  brand name doesn’t work too well). It describes the product and not the ‘lifestyle choice’ that the product could deliver. It was also polarizing (aimed at a young consumer) and not of broad appeal.
Their solution:
Brand ‘Phlib’ was unveiled – Photo Liberation – “Set your photos free” – great concept and easy to remember. I like it!

The ‘big test’ was a 1-day test that Jo Malone sorted out at the national lifestyle exhibition – The Ideal Home Show at Earl’s Court in London. The three things that they were trying to evaluate were:
1.    How you sell your product
2.    Whether you are great PR ambassadors to your product
3.    How the consumers view your product
Harry got a great response at the show, making his first sale, but when the ‘financials’ were discussed, it came to light that Harry needed to sell 10,000 units to recoup his tooling costs and 20,000 units to ‘breakeven’ – a big investment on his part and a bit of  ‘millstone round his neck’!

Anyhow, that aside, Jo and Nick put Harry through to pitch to Heals, one of the most influential homeware retailers in the UK. A 200 year old store with a turnover of £37M  and renowned for ‘breaking’ new designers. He got to pitch to Trading Director Gillian and Head of Accessories Furzana. Apparently they get to sit through 1000 pitches per year and of those, roughly 50% are successful.

Suffice it say, they liked Phlib and gave Harry an initial order of 100. Although Harry was clearly disappointed, it presented a great PR opportunity for him to ‘sell his story’ & background to ‘real customers’ and gain an awful lot of knowledge in the process. As Jo pointed out; “This is like the golden ticket’ – you have to take this opportunity and make it your own”

So what a bout the packaging? (hooray I hear you say!). ……The Heals buyers did mention the packaging at a superficial level. They liked the phrase on the promotional poster “photos belong on your wall – not on your hard drive (well done Heavenly again), but as I’ve mentioned on my other posts about this series, the packaging wasn’t entered into in any great depth. Not surprising bearing in mind the time constraints of the show. So let’s have a look at that now and think about some of the packaging issues that Harry will have either now, or potentially in the future, and try to help him pre-empt them.

As well as selling through Heals (assuming that Harry still is), he is also selling ‘on-line’ from his own website. So what sort of things should Harry consider? Let’s have a look at some of them:
Selling

Harry’s website does a great job at ‘selling’ the brand. On-line retail means the packaging does not really need to perform a selling role at Point of Sale (POS). I’m not sure if Harry is still selling at Heals and how these products are packaged to provide a consistent brand image with website and POS, but it’s something that needs to be considered carefully. I notice that Harry has already started to incorporate with his frames 3M Command™ Strips, to avoid customers having to hang or screw the frames to the wall and that’s a nice ‘added value’ touch.  Bearing in mind the flexibility of the modular system that he has developed, the packaging provides an ideal opportunity for ‘up-selling’ other frame sizes, providing ideas on wall-layout, and other photo/frame/homeware accessories.

Informing
If still selling through retailers such as Heals, Harry is probably already aware that product and bar code information will be required. This may not necessarily be so for Harry’s own website initially, but as his business grows, this type of information will greatly aid stock control. For consumers, useful information could include, at a basic level – frame size, colour, price, contact details but at a more emotional and engaging level, provides an opportunity for Harry to ‘connect’ with his target market. He could provide all sorts of information on the brand heritage, his vision for the business, brand values, the methods he uses to make his frames, the quality of materials & methods used and really build an emotional story on which to ‘pivot’ the brand.

Sealed air transit packaging & inflating machine

Sealed air transit packaging & inflating machine

Transporting
From Harry’s online store, I should imagine that most of his transport needs are met by a courier such as DHL or other. I’m not sure what sort of stock-holding Heals will want to keep, but it’s certain that they will want to manage & move their stock in the most efficient way possible. To enable this, as well as relevant information, they will want frames boxed into suitable multiples (6, 10, 12 or whatever). The shipping boxes used will require their own ITF bar codes to enable ease of handling & storage.

Protecting
At least Phlib products are not frames that incorporate glass into their manufacture. This makes them lighter and less likely to get damaged in transit than the ‘glass variety’, although being thin metal, they are liable to get bent. Careful use of traditional ‘padding’ materials like corrugated board and bubble-wrap can provide a simple enough ‘filler’ to protect the product from crushing, but there are a number of alternative organic, compostable and ‘sealed air’ filler materials around

Bamboo transit packaging trays

Bamboo transit packaging trays

now that can also provide a more ‘environmentally friendly’ transit packaging solution. If you want an interesting insight into the perils of picture frame packaging issues and remedies, check out this interesting article on the topic on the Datalite website.

I hope that this has highlighted SOME of the packaging considerations that need to be taken into account when developing and selling a product like picture frames and supplying them to market. I’m not sure how many of these issues were discussed ‘off camera’ during the programme, but they all play their role in a successful launch, and ‘branding’ is only a part of the picture. So well done Harry, for getting this far, and we wish you every success in the future.

You can find out more about Harry’s products from his Phlib website.

Tomorrow is the last installment of our High Street Dreams reviews. I will take a look at the final product covered in the last TV programme and, as well a giving an overview of what happened in that show and how packaging and design aspects were tackled as above, I’ll also take a ‘step-back’ and provide my own thoughts on some of the other important issues that entrepreneur (Bex) needs to consider (or should have considered already) in the successful launch of her products to a mass market! So keep your eyes open for the following posting on this site:

Friday 23rd July: ‘Homeware’Bex Simon an artistic blacksmith who designs beautiful one-off metal-ware objects for the home.

Chris Penfold