First impressions of your product will
be formed when customers see your
packaging, and we all know how
important first impressions are, especially if your product is pictured
online or displayed in a store or at a
conference. Whether your product is
an E-Book or a product in a box or
envelope, packaging conveys your
marketing message. It’s up to you to
make a great first impression, and
packaging is one way to do that.
Packaging is also a way to show
off your creativity. Michelle Eichhorn
offers the following example from her
personal experience: “When Treasure
Box Press needed packaging for our
science kits, we played upon the
treasure box theme and printed boxes
that looked like wooden treasure
boxes. At homeschool conventions,
the boxes were walking billboards for
the business. People would come by
the booth and specifically mention the
treasure boxes, which was the perfect
lead-in to the contents of the boxes!”
If your product requires any type of
packaging, you have several options:
Tips From the TOS Team
Dena Wood, Director of Finance and
Consider grouping similar or complementary products into packages: bundling.
Customers like bundles because they spare
them the decision-making process, are an
easy “one-click” purchase, and often save
them money. Retailers like bundles
because they move inventory, increase
revenue, and result in happy customers.
What’s not to love?
Nancy Carter, Director of Marketing
Really connect with your potential audience. Understand their needs and keep the
focus on how your product can help them.
Be responsive to suggestions. Know your
priorities. Let your audience get to know
you and share your enthusiasm. Remember
life is all about learning, so just take one
step at a time.
• Bulk packaging. Purchase the
packages in bulk from a supply
company, such as Uline® (www.
uline.com). Once you have identified a few options, call the
companies and ask for samples.
Typically, these are sent free of
Heidi Strawser, Marketing Assistant and
E-Book Reviews Specialist
If you are passionate about the product or
service that you are trying to sell, your
customers will recognize your enthusiasm and be more likely to purchase. If
you are approaching your customers face
to face, then they have the advantage of
seeing your facial expressions and body
language. However, if you don’t have the
luxury of personal contact with your
customers, then your passion is going to
have to shine through in other ways.
Those ways are your words and your
Be personal, real, and honest with
your audience; make yourself approachable and available to them.
If you are in business for yourself, set
some deadlines and goals. It’s definitely
easier to work when you know what
you’re working towards and when you
want to see results.
If you are not talented in these areas,
but still feel that you have a marketable
product, find someone who does exhibit
these talents and work together as a team.
•Custom design packaging.
Obviously, this is a more expensive route. However, if you are
well versed in a graphics
program such as Adobe®
Photoshop®, you may be able to
do most or all of the necessary
graphics work yourself. When
discussing this option with a
packaging manufacturer, be sure
to ask about setup fees and
reordering fees, in addition to the
cost per unit.
Michelle Eichhorn, Marketing Manager
Provide some free materials for your site
visitors in the form of a pdf file they can
easily download with Adobe® Reader®. It
should be a solid example of what they can
expect quality-wise from your company.
It is also helpful to have website stats in
place so that you can track the number of hits
on this file. Set up an attractive and easy-to-use download page with a “Share This With
a Friend” button or link. You want them to
spread the word about your business.
Consider placing a special coupon code in
the file, so that you can track the effectiveness of the free E-Book. When the large
tsunami hit southeast Asia several years ago,
we offered an E-Book on tsunamis (with
some science activities) exclusive to our
business. It was passed all over the Internet,
and our stats showed it was posted on a
Yahoo® engineering group in France and a
teaching bulletin board in Australia!
Kris Price, Assistant to the Publishers
Something in print has the advantage of
being seen over and over again. For
example, I often read through a magazine
2–3 times, cover to cover, before I’m
totally done with it. On the other hand,
media such as TV and radio rely on the
person “tuning in” at just the moment,
when the ad is being displayed. This is
more of a “hit or miss” strategy.
Word of mouth is often the best
marketing tool. Nothing means more than
hearing one person’s opinion or experience with a product or service.
Whether your product will be
packaged in a CD jewel case or a
custom box, your logo should always
be prominent. Make sure it is in a
highly visible spot and is large
enough to be easily discerned.
Mari Almon, Senior Advertising Services
I love working in Sales and Advertising at
The Old Schoolhouse! I think the biggest
thrill for me is helping companies of all
sizes realize success growing in our
market. The first and most important
advice I give is always the same:
“Whatever venue in the market you select
for your advertising, choose ads you can
afford to repeat over and over again.”
Lisa Barthuly, Sales and Advertising
Specialist, New Markets Development
Print advertising is a “staple” in advertising, both short- and long-term.
Get in on a Yahoo® Group or two, just
to glean information, if nothing else! I
find in a couple Yahoo Groups that I am
in, folks band together and do promotions, freebie giveaways, and the like to
promote one another; it’s wonderful!