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Smart Packaging Plays a Key Role for Brands and as a Marketing Tool

At a recent AIPIA Summit, speakers explained how investing can help companies to regain manufacturing power, and why labels and boxes can serve as powerful media for businesses and thus enhance customer relationships.
By Edson Perin
Aug 04, 2019

Increasingly, products are being made available for sale through e-commerce and by companies with little to no relationship with manufacturers. This conclusion was presented by Michael Elias, the chief revenue officer of Evrythng, at the recent AIPIA Summit China conference. Elias explained that, more than the already important gains in asset tracking, anticounterfeiting, sustainability and customer experience improvement, investing in smart and intelligent packaging means regaining the power of the manufacturer.

Elias cited sales at Amazon and Alibaba as examples of challenges facing manufacturers looking to bond with their customers. "Regardless of the media used to attract customers and make sales," he told attendees, "maintaining a direct, active and online channel of communication with the consumer must be an effort to be conquered through the packaging itself. You can't waste the power of packaging, especially since it's already in the hands of the consumer."

Watch an interview with AIPIA's Martine Greenfield and Eef de Ferrante.

This was one of the keynote addresses presented on the first day of AIPIA Summit China, hosted by the Active & Intelligent Packaging Association (AIPIA) in Shanghai. Another point raised at the event: rather than offering information technology and solutions, supplier companies need to create comprehensive platforms to meet their customers' diverse needs.

Evrythng's Michael Elias
Those who think smartphone use occurs at an advanced level in Brazil, Japan, the United States and Europe might want to think again. In China, especially in Shanghai, consumers pay for products, as well as rides on subways and buses, via QR codes associated with WeChat, a Whatsapp-like app installed on their smartphones. (The Chinese government blocks access to Google, Facebook, Whatsapp and other frequently used online services in the West.)

According to Takasuke Ishitani, the president of the Japan Food Packaging Association, one cause of smartphone use in place of paper money and coins in China is the prevalence of counterfeiting in that country. "A smartphone purchase is 100 percent guaranteed to have been completed with valid features, unlike cash transactions," he explains. Ishitani says cash transactions in Japan tend to be larger than those performed by smartphone.

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