P&G Shifts Focus To Packaging, Adopts Design Thinking Globally

P&G Shifts Focus To Packaging, Adopts Design Thinking Globally

Consumer Packaged Goods giant Procter & Gamble is acting "smaller" by re-focusing its marketing around reaching consumers at the store level.

Paloma M. Vazquez
  • 13 april 2010

Consumer Packaged Goods giant Procter & Gamble (P&G) has long been considered a leader in brand marketing across its vast portfolio. In spite of being a corporate behemoth, they have championed a number of initiatives more oftentimes adopted by smaller, nimbler brands – such as allocating a more significant portion of their product launch ad budgets to digital media, or making social media a key platform. In spite of their size, one can argue that with their nimbler, calculated risk-taking- P&G’s brands oftentimes try to think and act “smaller”,  a key theme that attendees at this past Friday’s PSFK Conference in NYC may recall.

The latest case in point comes via an AdAge article discussing P&G’s re-focusing its marketing organization around reaching consumers at the store level, and its ensuing decision to incorporate design thinking into its brand building function. P&G’s shift was in part driven by research indicating that in-store marketing is the leading medium (beating TV) in creating awareness of new package goods,  with nearly three quarters of consumers becoming aware of new products by simply seeing them on the shelf.  And what drives that visibility is the product’s packaging.

According to P&G Global Design Officer Phil Duncan,

“We now are brand-building from the eyes of the consumer toward us. We’ve always believed the consumer should be boss, but we had an organization that was a little function-specific. By coming together as a real multifunctional team, I think we’re already seeing bigger and better ideas.”

While P&G has begun incorporating design thinking into its organization globally and across a number of business challenges (revamping under-performing brands, solving business problems and creating new franchises across complementary brands), many of these have yet to hit store shelves.  That said, P&G sees that first experience a consumer has with the brand upon seeing the packaged product on store shelves as the “moment of truth” – making package and product design the first area in which it will see the results of its design approach;

For the Febreze Home Collection, designers spent time in consumers’ homes and boutiques, segmenting consumers by home-decor preferences and developing fragrance and decorative ranges for each segment that include battery-powered flameless luminaries with changeable scented shades, along with reed diffusers, scented candles and room spays. The initiative has helped P&G add two share points in air fresheners since launching last year.

What makes this corporate priority relevant is not only P&G’s recognition of the ultimate impact that packaging and product design have on a consumer’s emotional experience with the brand, but also the realization that a brand shouldn’t plan its approach in terms of internal disciplines and their political muscle.  Operations, Marketing and R&D are each disciplines that contribute to an overarching, single objective: the way a consumer experiences a brand and its products. A consumer doesn’t perceive or experience the different contributions of each discipline to his or her perception of the brand, but only the single experience they have with the product.

AdAge: “P&G Pushes Design in Brand-Building Strategy”


Lancôme's Newest Campaign Stars A Domestic Abuse Survivor

Arts & Culture Yesterday

Small Urban Pavilions Create A Nature Refuge In East London

These relaxing micro shelters provide a haven amidst chaotic city environments

Travel Yesterday

Travel Laundry Pouch Washes Your Clothes Wherever You Are

The Scrubba Wash Bag helps anyone wash their clothes easily and quickly with just a little water and soap


Get PSFK's Related Report: Future of Automotive

See All
Social Media Yesterday

Swipe Up To Register To Vote On Snapchat

The social platform has partnered with TurboVote to help young people easily enroll in less than one minute

Children Yesterday

Battle Card Game Promotes Childhood Vaccinations

An Australian doctor has developed a playful way to inform parents about immunization and entertain kids

Fitness / Sport Yesterday

Oakley And Intel’s Sunglasses Give You A Built-In Personal Trainer Wherever You Go

The sunglasses/earbuds hybrid tracks your performance and lets you know how well your workouts are going

Experiential Marketing Yesterday

UNICEF’s ‘Time Machine’ Tells Stories With Data

An experiential installation at the UN General Assembly reminds us why every child matters

Design & Architecture Yesterday

Watch The World’s Tallest Building Become An LED Display

Burj Khalifa gives a backstage look at how the transformation came to be


Future Of Automotive
Scenarios Driving The Digital Transformation Of An Industry

PSFK Op-Ed Yesterday

Modern Workplace Culture: No More Fat Cats Or Kissing Ass

Samar Birwadker, CEO & Co-Founder of Good & Co, on designing shared organizational values to optimize employee happiness and success

PSFK Labs september 22, 2016

The Future Of Work: Why Innovation Is Every Employee’s Job

PSFK Labs sits down with management at Johnson & Johnson to learn how the company comes up with their next ‘big idea’

Travel Yesterday

Boeing Wants To Make Your Flight Better With Cloud And Star Projections

The manufacturer is trying to patent a projection system that would allow them to project images onto a plane's interior surfaces

Latin America Yesterday

Colombians Teach Dance To Fund Students’ Education

Chocó to Dance is a platform that shows you how to replicate popular Latin dances to help create scholarships for local students

Work Yesterday

Editorial Roundtable: What A People-First Workplace Must Prioritize First

Managed By Q, Soma, Workbar, Primary, AltSchool and thinkPARALLAX on why employee fulfillment is a journey and not a destination

Culture Yesterday

Brand Engagement At The Gates Of The World’s Largest Open-Air Gallery

Tiger Beer and a neighborhood-minded nonprofit celebrate and promote New York's creative spirit by beautifying 100 security gates


Future Of Work
Cultivating The Next Generation Of Leaders

Technology Yesterday

How Technology Can Save The World By Saving Time

PSFK attends the Social Good Summit 2016 to see how new tech is changing the world for the better

Travel Yesterday

Marriott’s Gravity Room Installation Gives Travelers A New Perspective

The luxury hotel chain's #MGravityRoom invites visitors to snap and share pictures of its inverted set up

No search results found.