Connected packaging on the rise in 2024

Companies are overwhelmingly likely to connect their packaging production to their digital marketing or online presence, according to new research, as they seek to gain extra value from their marketing.

08 Mar 2024 | By PrintWeek Team

Firms tying digital and physical marketing together

Nearly nine in ten (88%) of packaging-buying companies report they are planning a connected packaging campaign in 2024, according to a survey by inkjet manufacturer Domino and creative studio Appetite Creative.

With 96% planning for an increased digital marketing spend in 2024, up from 88% in 2023, this presents an opportunity for packaging converters able to support these potential customers, according to Jenny Stanley, Appetite Creative managing director.

“It’s great to see the perceived value of data collection through connected packaging rising, especially in the context of the imminent demise of third-party cookie data,” she said.

Domino’s director general of strategic sectors, Craig Stobie, added: “We’re seeing increased interest from customers about the uses and benefits of deploying connected experiences via product packaging, especially across the circular economy, for medical equipment instructions and FMCG stock management. 

“Demand is likely to rise with more packaging legislation expected.”

While increased investment in digital marketing spend was up year-on-year, the number of respondents who plan to spend on connected packaging campaigns dropped slightly, with over a third (33%) planning to spend between USD 15,000 to USD 30,000 this year. A quarter (25%) plans to spend $31,000 to $50,000, down by 17% points year-on-year (previously 42%). 

The government’s extended producer responsibility (EPR) legislation, where converters and their clients are held responsible for the cost of recycling the packaging they bring to market, is due to come into force in October 2025.

Over three-quarters (75%) of those interviewed said that connected packaging helps to improve the sustainability credentials of a company, a drop year-on-year from 91% in 2023 and 80% in 2022. 

Stanley added, “It’s also interesting to see sustainability drop down the agenda despite new government-led regulations. We will continue to watch these trends closely and offer, what we consider to be, high-value rewards to clients delivered via connected packaging.”

Domino and Appetite Creative surveyed 2,954 executives in January and February 2024 globally, working across the marketing, media, automotive, retail, utilities, construction, hospitality, FMCG/CPG and finance industries about their appetite for, perceived value of, and understanding about connected packaging.