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A packaging designer must follow a collaborative process to satisfy the client. Interviewing the client helps get the creative process rolling. Taking the following crucial steps will ensure the project stays on track with the client's expectations and needs.

Know the Product

Part of the creative development phase of packaging design involves collecting information about the product and understanding its functions and why customers want it. Studying the product's main benefits will help guide the creative path with a clear idea of its unique selling proposition. This knowledge will help form catch phrases and set the appropriate emotional tone for the visuals.

Aim for  the Target Market

The designer should have a vivid conception on who the target audience is for the product package they are developing. Knowing basic demographics such as age, gender, income and education level is helpful in communicating through visuals. If the target audience is for young kids, it will likely be more colorful with fun messaging. For the more experienced savvy adult shoppers who value authenticity, the design may take a more minimalistic approach.

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Identify the Product's Uniqueness

A major challenge for the designer is to convey the product's uniqueness in a limited space. Through discussions and brainstorming with the client, the designer can position the product or brand appropriately. When developing a tagline for a food product, it helps for the designer to know the ingredients that define the product's uniqueness. The designer should take into account values that make the brand stand out from competitors.

Provide Visual Intelligence

A typical packaging design devotes 70 percent of the visual space to graphics while text occupies the rest of the space. The package conveys visual information to the consumer, based on its shape, size, color, tone and graphics. The layout of graphics and text can contribute to brand familiarity. Developing color schemes that capture the product's emotional appeal is particularly important.

Get Artwork Approved

The most crucial stage of the design process is getting approval by the client for a mockup that resembles the final artwork (FA). At this stage the client may want to make changes such as editing text or rethinking placement of design elements.


The process of developing product packaging is heavily based on factors such as product knowledge, understanding the target market and the product's appeal. Ultimately, the design must match the product's purpose in the minds of consumers.

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[1]  More articles on "Packaging design (2016-2020)", by Alex Cosper

[2] "Opportunities for Sustainable Packaging Design (2015)" , by Yoon Choi, Dan Lockton , Clare Brass  and John Stevens 

Topics: Metal Packaging, Packaging Design