As young kids the first words that we are taught to write are our names. Therefore it is no surprise that in an over saturated market, a trend that’s evolved over the last few years and continues to grow is product personalisation.
Digital print has revolutionised individualisation not just in packaging design, but in product manufacturing too over the last decade. Traditional stores have always prided themselves on personal service and the rise of the “personal shopper” hand picking items especially suited to their customer has also translated into the now standard cookie controlled personalised on-line shopping experience, re-evaluating previous search results to serve up “things you will love”.
The “Share a Coke” campaign really did bring personalisation into the main stream for consumers, creating a range of country specific names for their labels. This encouraged consumers to not only find their own names but to buy a personalised Coke for their friends, family and loved ones. Brilliant.
Fun for kids big and small M&Ms World lets visitors customise both front faces of their chocolate goodies from photos to little messages. A modern twist on selecting the right Love Hearts sweet for your loved one perhaps?
Originally created as a snack solution before flavoured crisps were even invented, Salt’N’Shake endures as a classic brand and has changed very little over the years. The iconic blue bag allows you to regulate or personalise to your taste, go all natural or as salty as the Dead Sea, positioning the brand bang up to date for today’s health conscious consumer.
Luxury brands of course have an established history in personalisation, monogramming, embroidery and limited editions being part of the service. This season has seen Burberry show how to make a luxury poncho a must-have by including initials in the pattern. Tatty Devine widened their range and opened a pop-up stall at Selfridges, where fashion forward consumers can mix and match pretty much all their fashion accessories and personalise while you wait.
The success of on-line personalised gift store Not on the High Street has also been fuelled by the trend for clever and unique personalised gifts from jewellery, canvas prints of your mix tape to framed sketches and clever family word collections all beautifully presented.
The service sector has long personalised customer experiences, “How would you like your…” being a common mantra applied to everything from steak to eggs to martinis and now even pillows when you check in to a hotel.
But is it me or is the practice of writing customers’ names on their coffee cups a step too far? With the process of “personalising” our coffee order becoming a bit stressful with the myriad of choices available, I find the “naming” so annoying that I have turned it into my personal mission to invent a new persona each time I order – such fun!
And finally… as much as this trend may tap into more product categories in the future, we couldn’t resist having some fun with sectors that should approach the trend with caution.