Recently, one area of marketing that has gained significant traction is sensory marketing, especially in the food industry. This basically utilises stimuli to engage consumers on a deeper level: emotional connections are stronger, and purchasing decisions can be influenced. 

Let’s take a look at how it works, and why you should explore new ways to market your food brand.

Visual Appeal

Visuals in branding anything can make or break for customers.

Vibrant colours, appealing graphics, and well-designed logos can create positive emotions: an overall memorable impression. 

Branding that accurately represents your brand and the product’s characteristics, like freshness or natural ingredients, could evoke feelings of confidence and trust. 

Aesthetics that are pleasing to the eye, and that also align with a brand’s identity help give you that extra edge over your competitors. 

Texture and Touch

Interacting directly with food packaging can have lasting effects on consumers. Materials with interesting textures, embossed surfaces or soft-touch finishes, can portray a sense of luxury of quality. 

Texture can also communicate specific product characteristics, a rough texture for a rustic snack or a smooth one for a creamy dessert. 

It helps solidify the idea of what you’re selling.

Auditory Cues

Sound is probably one of the last things you may have thought about when marketing food, but it’s used constantly. 

Cues such as the satisfying “crunch” of opening a bag of crisps, or the “glugging” of a drink as it’s poured into an ice-cold glass, all contribute to creating an atmosphere of positivity and anticipation that surrounds your product. 

The careful selection of music or jingles in commercials can also have these effects: enhancing brand recall and likeability. 

This can also be cleverly developed and manufactured into the product itself.

Aromas and Scents

Nostalgia is powerful. A smell brings about memory and the emotions that come with it. This makes it a very ‘potent’ tool for marketers.

How many times have you smelled food that reminded you of a very specific thing, like your friend’s house you haven’t been to since you were 5? 

Infusing food packaging with pleasant aromas or scents that align with the product, can create an immersive experience and help generate product recall.

ie. The scent of freshly brewed coffee coming from a coffee-related product can enhance people’s perception of the quality and freshness. Someone could smell coffee later in the day, think about your product, and buy it the next time they see it.

Taste Expectation

“Yeah this looks good, I’ll buy it.”

While taste cannot be conveyed through packaging alone, visual cues and descriptions can create ‘taste expectations’. 

Showing yummy food and language that captures it can elevate consumers’ curiosity and desire to try the product. 

If done effectively, taste expectation marketing (across all fronts) can help increase sales and consumer satisfaction, if it lives up to it, of course.

Takeaways (not literally)

It’s important to market to all people (in your target market), as well as their senses.

Taking care of every design element in your marketing to approach each one productively, can help consumers feel comfortable and confident in what you’re selling. 

As this genre develops though, we can only hope to see more innovative ideas that could revolutionise immersion in food marketing. 

Not sure if it will be anything like the holographic, interactive advertisements of the future, shown in the Back to The Future or Bladerunner franchises, anytime soon, but it’s fun to imagine.

Need any Help?

Not sure where to begin? We’ve been helping food brands to create effective and innovative packaging for decades. Get in touch with us today.

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If you would like to discuss your branding, logo or identity project, call us on 01295 266644 or complete the form.