The rhetoric of advertising surrounds us in both explicit and implicit ways. That is, we see billboards and commercials, mannequins wearing fantastic outfits in storefront windows, hear radio advertisements, etc. Implicitly, we find things in our daily lives that we want to buy all the time due to the way they’re arranged (which comes from how they were advertised)– a shade of lipstick, a beautiful coat, adorable tea cups– anything.
Packaging is a very important aspect of advertising. People often know the utility of what they’re going to buy, its purpose and function, but they can think about that same product in new and creative ways based on packaging alone. An artful design can go a long way in drawing out more than just functionality. While artists are sometimes thought of as on the fringes or on the margins of capitalism, art can show something of a product its function alone might not reveal. And where does this artful advertising take place? First and foremost in its packaging.
Much of what makes something feel special and fancy is its packaging. Think of a line of perfumes. Clear liquid in small vials alone might not feel as intimate as a gorgeous wooden box with etched in art and calligraphy notes (where the language itself is part of packaging the product) with intricate lace around the box.
Packaging is an extension of the product: think of it as part of what you’re selling. Hire an artist to either advise or to design: s/he will see what makes the product beautiful and pull it out as a way to advertise a product’s interior and make it shimmer. Think of what could make your product feel dear to someone, even if you’re selling it in bulk: what might someone, in his/her daily life, find a way to make a personal connection with? Your packaging can display the inward nature of what you’re giving to people.