Royal Supply Knowledge Base

Cannabis Packaging and the 5 Brand Types

Oct 21, 2020 1:04:30 PM / by Robert Warren

You are not a unique butterfly.

(But that's a good thing)

TL;DR: Marketing researchers identify 5 brand types and give rules of thumb to follow when it comes to your design and packaging, so you can better communicate with designers and produce results. Are you massive, contrasting, natural, delicate or nondescript?


Buckle up for one of the most interesting packaging conversations you'll read in a long, long, loooooong time. 

From the Journal of Marketing (HERE) comes an impressive experiment attempting to determine how brand managers can better communicate their product and generate results through design. While this typically occurs via conversations between managers and designers, there is a serious lack in shared language between business types and the art types, and a serious lack of tracking desired product goals vial packaging. 

So what did the researchers do?


They started with WINE. 

Using 45 different wine packaging designs, the researchers had professional designers score the designs based on different design factors (62 descriptive terms for the packaging in total).

From those professional rankings, the researchers then found where the data clustered (i.e. what terms and designs often went together mathematically).

This allowed the researchers to identify certain brand types that directly correlate with buying behavior and consumer preferences. Which means you can TARGET YOUR CUSTOMERS MORE EFFECTIVELY IF YOU DESIGN AROUND YOUR TYPE! (Can you tell we're excited about this?)

So what are the types and how do I use them?

Product Categories-1


Massive, Contrasting, Natural, Delicate, Nondescript

The five types that the researchers identify via analysis are as follows:

[See above images for examples]

  • Massive:
    • High Excitement, Low Competence and Low Sophistication
    • Inexpensive, Low Prestige, Low Quality
  • Contrasting
    • High Excitement, High Ruggedness, Low Sophistication
    • Mid Quality, Inexpensive, Low Femininity
  • Natural
    • High Competence, High Sophistication, High Sincerity
    • High Quality, Healthy, Good Value
  • Delicate
    • High Competence, High Quality
    • High Quality, Prestigious
  • Nondescript
    • Low Sincerity, Low Excitement, Low Ruggedness
    • Corporate, Low Value, Fewer Fond Memories

Additional Products-1

So what can I do to improve my brand?

If you want to ensure alignment between your package messaging and your product, begin by identifying how you want your product to be seen.

Are you Sincere? Use Natural designs.

Are you Exciting? Be Massive or Contracting design.

Are you Competent? Design with the Delicate type in mind.

Are you Sophisticated? Use Use Natural and Delicate design.

Are you Rugged? Use Massive and Contrasting design. 

Once you determine how you want to be seen. Instruct your design team to create around the 5 types.

You will increase the likelihood of finding product market fit and increasing clarity between your imagery and your buyer.


Tags: Branding

Robert Warren

Written by Robert Warren