Connected packaging popularity expected to surge in 2023 to educate customers and improve sustainability credentials

Published by Appetite Creative


● 81% used Connected Packaging as a brand in the last year vs 54% in 2022
● 48% used connected packaging to help educate customers and shared product updates
● Increased investment in digital marketing spend is planned by 88% in 2023 vs. 59% in 2022
● 88% claim to be planning a connected packaging campaign this year
● 92% consider connected packaging to be increasingly important to the packaging industry
● 91% consider connected packaging will improve business sustainability credentials

28 February 2023, London - Creative technology studio Appetite Creative today released
results from its second annual connected packaging survey. Connected packaging has
experienced a rise in popularity in the last 12 months, with over four-fifths (81%) of those
surveyed stating they have used connected packaging, compared to just over half (54%) in
The biggest barrier for almost half of respondents is lack of business capabilities and
preparedness (48%), price (20%) and complexity (11%). A stark contrast from the results in
2022 when a third (29%) stated it wasn’t a business requirement, a mindset found in only
7% of respondents this year.
Almost half (48%) consider connected packaging important to help educate customers,
which paints a similar picture seen in last year’s survey. Other valuable factors this year
included direct customer interaction (45%) and using connected packaging to inform
product updates or marketing decisions (42%). Data collection requirements lagged behind
with a third (29%) of those surveyed considering it important.
Increased investment in digital marketing spend is planned in 2023 by 88% of those
surveyed vs. 59% in 2022. Businesses plan to increase spend on connected packaging
campaigns by between $31,000 to $50,000, claimed almost half of respondents (42%). This
is more than double seen back in 2022, when 40% planned to increase investment by less
than $18,000.
Over four-fifths (88%) claim to be planning a connected packaging campaign this year and
the majority (92%) of respondents consider connected packaging to be increasingly
important to the packaging industry in the next 12 months and beyond. These numbers
have ticked up year on year, with only two thirds (59%) in 2022 citing plans for a connected
packaging campaign and 85% considered it important for the industry.

Connected packaging is deemed increasingly important as a sustainable way to connect with
and educate customers (57%) and it is perceived by almost half (44%) to be becoming the
main route to communicate directly with customers. Over a third (38%) surveyed believe it
encourages customer loyalty, with gamification ranking in a similar position (36%) indicating
playable ads are an important route to engaging with younger audiences.
Increased sustainability pressures on packaging producers and the introduction of new EU
packaging laws have positively impacted the perceived value of connected packaging. The
majority (91%) of respondents agree that it helps to improve the sustainability credentials of
a company, vs 80% in 2022.
New survey questions added this year looked at gamification in marketing campaigns, a
seemingly popular connected experience tool with 70% claiming to use or consider using it.
Almost two-thirds (57%) adopted traditional mobile games, a third (31%) used augmented
reality games and 11% shared a quiz through a connected packaging experience. Almost half
(48%) used gamification to promote a new product or drive sales, 17% to data collect and
15% to improve brand recognition.
“Despite the cost-of-living crisis and global economic uncertainty, investment in connected
packaging experiences continues to rise,” said Jenny Stanley, Managing Director at Appetite
Creative. “No longer only a data collection tool, connected packaging is now a long-term
customer relations and educational media channel, which helps companies navigate ever-
changing sustainability requirements and inform product development and marketing
decisions. Moving from a tipping point into mainstream usage this year, the perceived value
of connected packaging has shifted to a business ‘must-have’.”


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