A need for “disruptive design”

A need for “disruptive design”

Brands will need to make increasing use of disruptive design to create cut-through and conversation in crowded markets, according to the world’s largest independent brand design agency.

David Stroud, Creative Director of LPK London, was speaking after LPK was awarded a Gold Pentaward in the global packaging design competition for a bespoke “These are not tennis balls” pack design created for Procter & Gamble’s (P&G) snack brand Pringles. 

“In recent years, we’ve seen a number of smart brands such as Pringles, Marmite, Mars, Evian and Coke using bespoke design concepts to connect with consumers at a whole new level,” says Stroud. “I believe we’re going to see a big rise in this kind of disruptive approach to design, leveraged across media such as packaging, as brands seek fresh ways to convey distinct personalities.


He continues: “Packaging, for example, used to simply be about how you talked to consumers. Now it’s about how you use packaging to talk with consumers and create conversations amongst them. Brand personality has moved beyond simply the tone of voice employed on pack designs, to the way in which you use clever packaging ideas to tell whole new stories across multiple media platforms.


Stroud cites LPK’s award-winning campaign for Pringles as a good example of a disruptive design concept, where the packaging concept created a platform for an eye-catching marketing campaign. The agency was challenged to come up with a clever summer campaign to drive brand sales in traditionally lean summer months. Noting the similarity of the iconic Pringles can to classic tennis ball tubes, LPK brought the brand’s personality to life by producing bespoke pack designs proclaiming “These are NOT tennis balls”.

The distinctive designs were applied to Pringle’s two biggest selling flavours – green Sour Cream & Onion cans, representing grass courts, and red Original cans, representing clay.  

The new packaging was then used as the basis for a brilliant PR and guerilla sampling campaign at Wimbledon. Over 35,000 sample cans were distributed to spectators as they entered the Championships, and celebrity look-a-likes of Roger Federer, Bjorn Borg and Cliff Richard added to the fun and media buzz. The result was extensive, admiring media coverage for the idea and more importantly, a tremendous uplift in sales as a result of the campaign.

The campaign was awarded a 2010 Gold Pentaward in the Food category.

Sue Bray, Trade Marketing Manager at P&G, comments: “During 2009 we revolutionised our overall pack design with “These are Not Tennis balls” being part of our new packaging approach. LPK showed us just how far an unconventional idea could extend our brand impact beyond the shelf. The campaign generated a real buzz with a collectible, limited edition version of iconic packaging. As a direct result of this activity, we’ve been exploring a host of new regionally relevant packaging concepts.

Images: Bloomberg & Deviantart

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