The smell of success: 3 reasons to give scratch-n-sniff packaging a try in 2023

Scratch-n-sniff packaging has been around since the 1970s, but it’s only recently that we’ve been seeing the technology gain traction. Popular with health and beauty products, this promising packaging design feature is ready to spread into new product categories.

The concept is simple: packaging is printed with special inks that are infused with a distinctive fragrance. When a shopper scratches the package, the scent is released. While scratch-n-sniff packaging is a fun and interactive way to get shoppers engaged, it’s also a great marketing tool to give brands advantages.

When a shopper scratches the package, the scent is released.

It creates connections

Because smell is so closely linked to memory and emotion, scratch-n-sniff packaging can help build an emotional connection with the consumer by leveraging scents that are associated with certain feelings. Take US breakfast cereal brand Trix for example. With their scented package, they’re well-placed to wake up childhood memories in their now-adult consumers – and make them more likely to pick up a box for their kids.

It creates differentiation

Another benefit of scratch-n-sniff packaging is that it can help differentiate brands from the competition. While big brands like Smirnoff and Crest toothpaste have been precursors in their categories, others are following suite. Think of Dogfish Head, a craft beer company in America. By adding a scratch-n-sniff patch on their 6-pack packaging, they not only give their potential buyers a preview of what’s in the cans, they also give their brew added attention on the shelf.

It creates identity

And scratch-n-sniff packaging can also help brands create a stronger identity. By associating a particular scent with their product, brands can create a signature aroma that their consumers will come to recognize. This can be especially useful for small businesses who need to establish a unique identity in the marketplace. Like this cannabis company who lets their customers smell the terpenes on the box before they buy – a multi-sensory experience that will undoubtedly place them high in brand recall.

In addition to adding a unique and memorable element to packaging design, scratch-n-sniff packaging is a great way for brands to create an experience that will leave a lasting impression on their customers. Contact us and let’s discuss your brand’s packaging today.

Text credits: ARD / agi

Images credits: Moonpig / Daniel Lee

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