7 best packaging practices for cannabis marketers: Page 2 of 7

By Tom Newmaster in Packaging Design on August 02, 2019

2. Shape, color, text—repeat after me…shape, color, text

These three priorities (in that order) are the building blocks of good package design. Remember, how it feels in the hand has a profound impact on purchase. So the shape should deliver on the promise of the product itself. The iconic Coca-Cola bottle is probably the best example.

Next, the color needs to express the brand’s personality, and the text gives it voice. Nobody does it better than Tiffany. The square peacock blue box is iconic and its statement single minded. The poetry of this little box says “You are worthy of this life-changing gift.” Granted, the Tiffany box does not compete on a retail shelf. But if it did, the shape, color and simple logo would make it a top seller every time.

Cannabis is another behind-the-counter item. The sales channel at a dispensary is through the bud tender. But already some brands are establishing their presence through powerfully focused package design. Kiva is one great example. The kraft substrate paired with the marijuana leaf image creates a warm, earth tone aura that is in sync with the whole eco-friendly nature of the product, making the package highly touchable. Like the Tiffany box, the design has an unmistakable signature.


NEXT: Make the connection—embracing technology and social media 

Tom Newmaster

Tom Newmaster is the founder of Central Pennsylvania-based FORCEpkg. He has more than 25 years of experience in branding and package design for consumer packaged goods. From 1998 to 2016, he was a principal and co-owner of WFM where he led creative and won awards for The Hershey Co., Pfizer, Stoner Car Care and Zippo. Newmaster has launched new products for Fresh Solutions Network, Koch’s Turkey, Klamath Basin Fresh Organics and Wolfgang Candy, to name a few. He has become a leading voice in the package and design industry and, more recently, a trusted source in the cannabis industry, as it relates to packaging and design. He serves as an adjunct instructor at Pennsylvania College of Art and Design.

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