How To Target Specific Markets With Packaging

Published On: July 10, 2018

Practically every marketer is looking to raise awareness and increase sales. But for many companies, trying to target everyone isn’t the most effective strategy. Narrowing their focus to a specific market boosts revenue and makes the most of every dollar they spend.

Market research and a winning outreach strategy lay the foundation here. Packaging can take it to the next level, informing design decisions that appeal to the unique market you’re trying to target.

How do you pull it off?

Start by applying the tips below.

Color and Structure

Bright colors draw people in. Eyes are immediately pulled to a bright design. Vivid colors are perfect if you have an exciting and high-energy brand. If you’re thinking of using bright colors in your packaging, make sure it appeals to your target market. Lots of bright colors might get someone’s attention – but colors still need to align with the brand message.

Packaging color has a larger impact than you might realize. For instance, Green evokes nature and relaxation while orange is a joyous and enthusiastic color. A staggering 85 percent of consumers buy products based on color. Read more about how different colors affect our emotions here.

This isn’t a decision to make lightly. As you consider your options, you’ll notice that certain types of products tend to gravitate toward certain color conventions. Whether you decide to stick with them depends on the uniqueness of your product and marketing strategy.

Also consider custom packaging structures. Unusual shapes draw the eye and demand attention. If you’re selling something like cosmetics – where the whole purpose of the product is to make the consumer stand out – a bold design will make your products stand out over competitors.

Mirror Customer Values


To dial up the perfect package, we have to understand the major reasons why customers are attracted to our products in the first place. What’s their motivation?

Great packaging reveals a deep understanding of those key values. If you’re selling organic skincare products, for instance, using recyclable materials and minimalist designs helps you connect with that market on a deeper level. A minimalist design communicates that the product is pure and organic. Conservation, purity, and sustainability, major values that motivate these people, are apparent at a glance.

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Tech products usually come in sleek, unique packaging that both reinforces the brand’s position as an innovator, as well as the consumer’s perception of themselves. If you’re selling a luxury item, consider splurging on a substrate like leather, silk, or even canvas to create an indulgent experience that begins even before the customer buys the product.

Accommodating Customer Lifestyle

Take an inventory of your target market’s habits. Do they shop mostly in stores or online? Is their demographic especially susceptible to peer influence, like teenagers? A cool package design will encourage them to talk about their purchases on social media or even create unboxing videos.

Understanding your customers’ lifestyle will guide almost every packaging decision. If they’re shopping in stores, investing in multi-sensory packaging (tactile, visual, scent, etc.) makes sense because they’ll have the chance to interact with packages before purchase.

Targeting busy parents who are always on the go? Effective packaging will emphasize durability and dependability. They’re looking for efficiency – something fast, easy, and secure.

Millennials might prefer something small, portable, and minimalistic. But if you’re targeting an older demographic, consider emphasizing ease-of-opening and larger print.

A Willingness to Adapt


Refining your packaging to suit your target market isn’t a set it and forget it solution. To truly deliver the best customer experience, you’ll want to keep tracking behavior and feedback to see how their needs adapt.

For instance, millennials are growing up and their purchasing power is increasing. Perhaps your core audience didn’t want that DVD collector box set years ago; now they can afford it.

Changes happen seasonally too. During the winter holidays people prefer tradition and nostalgia; heading into spring changes the focus to experimentation and renewal.

Incorporating gift and seasonal packaging will allow you to go with this natural rhythm and make your audience feel like you’re reading their minds!

Your Turn

Every audience is unique. The best packaging experts understand that. Instead of trying to force your brand to fit a certain mold, they’ll create the perfect package from scratch.

At Johns Byrne, our creative vision and technical expertise make us the ideal partners to apply these tips above. If you’re trying to make a statement that resonates with your target audience, check out our work gallery to get inspired about how we can help!

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