Did you know that Australia and New Zealand compete with the best label printing designs from USA, Europe, Japan, China and India in an annual label design competition?
Here is a link to the winners from 2014:
There is no doubt that there are some impressive label designs amongst previous winners.
However, I am always a little skeptical about these competitions. Firstly, I look at the judging panel which consists of one judge from each member panel. What determines the best printed labels.
Is it colour? Is it layout? Is it originality? Is it the use of imagery? Is it the use of the right fonts? I am sure that the judges took all of these factors into account when selecting the winners.
However, it is not what I would have considered if I was the judge. I would want to know the sales of the products as a result of the product labels appearing on the actual products that that the manufacturer is trying to sell. Yes, I believe that product labels are all about sales.
I would want to know sales of the product as it appeared on the supermarket shelf or other retailer or online. If the label was a redesign, I would want to know the increase in sales as a result of the new label. Then, I would want to know the repeat sales of the products based on the supposition that the label was so distinctive that it would be easily recognised by consumers when they went to the supermarkets to make a repeat purchase.
Of course, this would take a lot of work and research to gather these figures. It would be much easier to just look at a label design in isolation and decide that one particular design is eye-catching and original so it should be declared the winner.
The annual label printing awards remind me of the Academy Awards. It is rare that the movie with the best sales and highest profits wins the Academy Award for best picture. The Titanic, directed by James Cameron, is one movie that immediately springs to mind. It dominated the 1997 Academy awards and also broke box office records at the time.
Surely, the best criteria for judging a movie was how many people wanted to go and see it. In the same way the best way for judging a product label is how many of the products were actually sold.
I will concede that there are other factors at play. Product sales are influenced by much more than the actual label appearing on it. If the product label is only average, then that product will still sell if the marketing and branding and positioning are all top of the range. However, a really effective product label will still have an impact on the sales of that product and this is what really determines the effectiveness of your label design.
Renton’s Labels has not submitted any entries into label printing competitions. However, I do know that our product labels have had a positive impact on the sales of these products. Below are some examples of our product labels.