Tag Archives: packaging

6 Tips to Avoid Overpackaging

  1. Take out a measuring tape. Measure the length, width, and thickness of the contents you want to mail.  This will help you shop for the right package that will fit your contents.
  2. Don’t buy more than you need. Using a packaging solution that is far bigger than your contents requires more filler so your content don’t shift inside and get damaged.
  3. Think about the requirements of your packaging solution. This avoids overpackaging and overspending.  Does it need to be waterproof?  Does it need to protect something fragile?  Do you need perimeter protection or top/bottom protection or both?  Is it recyclable?
  4. Who is doing the assembly, you or someone else? Will it be used in a fulfillment center environment, or will it be assembled on the boardroom table by office staff?  Consider whether pre-assembly and peel-and-stick closure is a “nice to have” or a “need to have” feature.
  5. What is your shipping method? If postal cost is a big consideration, head to your shipper’s website and review your options through the cost-savings lens of your carrier.
  6. Plan ahead.  Don’t make your packaging a last-minute decision.  That almost guarantees that you will overpackage and pay too much for the privilege.

Send me your overpackaging stories… and tell me how you overcame your addiction.

Sari McConnell at smcconnell@conformerinc.com

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Jon Stewart Goes Bananas on Packaging

Del Monte's Single-Serve Banana in Plastic



Did anybody catch Jon Stewart’s latest inductee to the Pantry of Shame on “The Daily Show” last night?

The Del Monte  Single-Serve Banana, an individual banana (wait for it…) wrapped in plastic.

As you know, we’re big fans of “right packaging,” not overpackaging.  And the banana is Mother Nature’s best example of right packaging: biodegradable, durable, conforms to fit contents perfectly.

“So what function,” as Jon Stewart nails it home, “does the bag serve that the peel does not currently serve?  A product for people who love bananas but hate their biodegradability?”

Jon Stewart challenges us to think differently about the status quo in politics and media coverage five days a week.  Our hats are off to Mr. Stewart today for challenging America to think differently about its packaging choices, too.

Click here to see Jon Stewart go bananas over packaging.

And we’ve got a few ideas of our own.  See our 6 Tips to Avoid Overpackaging.

Sari McConnell at smcconnell@conformerinc.com

Try It, You’ll Like It

As anybody in new product development or technology can tell you, it’s challenging to get people to try a product they’ve never seen in action before.  We at Conformer Products can attest to this issue, which is why product sampling is our most important marketing tactic.  Because despite our website, the photo gallery and the videos, people still want to touch the product with their own two hands.  And if you’ve got a good product, sampling is a great way to go.

That’s why a featured packaging innovation from Anton Steeman’s Best in Packaging blog caught my attention.  If you scroll down to the bottom of this article, you’ll see TinyBottles, a set of 50 mL test tube-like samples of wine that can be shipped to you.  This sampling kit enables you to sample new wines from the San Francisco region far from the tasting room.  Interestingly, this innovation comes from a company called Crushpad, which is in the business of helping winemakers market and sell their wines.

How important is sampling in your business?  Take our poll and tell us!

-Sari McConnell at smcconnell@conformerinc.com

Hall of Shame #1: Another Reason to Banish Bubble Mailers

Welcome to the first installment of our monthly “Hall of Shame.”  We receive mailings that frequently make us scratch our heads. Basic errors, packaging failures, over-spending, under-spending… You get the point.

Our first entry into the Hall of Shame is a classic. News flash, folks: bubble mailers do not protect paper. They are too flexible. They are expensive. And they always arrive looking like they were run over by a truck.

As you can see from this example, the presentation folder was crumpled, and the sides are heavily damaged.

Sales Kit that came in a bubble mailer

Sales kit mailed in a bubble mailer

Expensive mailing arrives damaged

Expensive mailing arrives damaged

Note: To protect the anonymity of those involved, we have made our best efforts to disguise the identities of our Hall of Shame nominees.

by Bob Makofsky bmakofsky@conformerinc.com

Flat Stanley Takes on a New Dimension

Have you ever heard of Flat Stanley? Flat Stanley, the storybook character, is something of a grade school celebrity.  As my mother read this book aloud to my son the other day, the parallels between the Flat Stanley story and the Conformer story just jumped off the page.  Sure, I think about envelopes more than your average mom, but hang with me here.

Flat Stanley by Jeff Brown

Stanley is a boy, but his new flattened form gives him amazing abilities.  He can be flown as a kite.  He can slip under unlocked doors.  He travels the world in an envelope.  Amazing!  And his brother becomes incredibly jealous.  Being a commodity kid with obvious limitations is no fun, especially when Stanley has access to so many new places.

Flat Conformer, expands to fit

Flat Conformer, expands to fit

Doesn’t this sound like the Conformer envelope story?  Compared to a commodity envelope, the Conformer has a superior construction that goes from flat to 1.5”.  This new form is a vast improvement over bulky expensive packaging solutions like bubble mailers and small boxes.  It packs flat and doesn’t hold excess air, which lowers freight and storage costs considerably.  And automated postal and insertion equipment simply adore the Conformer envelope because Conformer has changed its shape to optimally work with the post office and high-speed fulfillment centers.

And that’s where things get really interesting because, suddenly the Conformer envelope isn’t just an envelope.  It’s a packaging solution.  The Conformer media mailer is just the beginning of how a paper envelope takes on the form of a dramatically more cost-effective package.  Conformer is working on taking the mail-order pharma industry by storm.  It’s a whole new world for Conformer, doing so much more with less bulk…just like Flat Stanley!

Dead Space

Dead Space

In the end, Flat Stanley’s jealous brother Arthur restores Stanley to his original shape with a football air pump.  As for Conformer, we happily leave all the unproductive dead space to our competitors!

by Sari McConnell