Are on-pack promotions still worth the outlay?

20 November 2018 / Brían Taylor

On-pack promotions have been a long standing engagement tool used by many FMCG brands, from confectionery to alcohol. What are the key considerations for brands considering on-pack promotions in 2019?

Shelf appeal

In a more competitive marketplace than ever, on-pack promotions can give products the edge over their direct competition through shelf-appeal. Not only do on-packs benefit from boosts in sales volume, (A third of adults asked in a recent survey of 2000 by Sodexo Engage would be more likely to purchase a product with an on-pack promotion), but also are far more likely to be placed in high-value locations on shelf by retailers such as promotional point of sale stands and end-of-aisle real estate.

Combined with an active push of the campaign across the marketing mix, brands can see a significant increase in sales throughout the lifetime of well-executed on pack promotions.

Bolster B2C relationships

It’s been proven that customers value and enjoy on-pack promotions. It’s a thrill to win, and even the opportunity to win adds value to the exchange. Given that customers are less brand loyal than ever, on-packs can play an important role in in-store conversion rates.

Youth Engagement

A recent study in the UK actually indicated that on-pack promotions were MOST popular amongst the youth demographic, directly contradicting the general assumption that youth are less engaged.

“42% of those aged 18-24 were ‘more likely’ to buy a product with an on pack promotion, whilst those aged over 55 were only 25% more likely.”

Brand association

Powerful on-pack promotions can be accelerated via partnerships that strike just the right chord - where two brands with a similar target audience collaborate and benefit from each others’ audience base and each other’s brand values.

Not only can this bolster brand relationships with the existing customers but it can introduce and expose each brand to previously untapped prospects. A brilliant partnership campaign will benefit both sides equally.

Accelerate sales without decreasing price point

The rate of repeated purchase is often accelerated throughout on-pack promotional periods as customers purchase product to increase their chances of winning, particularly with collecting packs for redemption purposes.

Timing is critical

Every marketer knows that timings for on-pack (or indeed any) campaigns are utterly critical. Not only seasonally related (such as Pimm’s in the summer, Creme eggs at Easter and Chocolate oranges at Christmas) but also in relation to current events and also with respect to competitors’ campaigns. Combining an on-pack with the right timing can result in far stronger campaign results due to increased relevancy.

Initial outlay is high

Changing packaging, building digital mechanisms, analysis, human resource, legal, fulfilment, and all other aspects of executing a successful on-pack promotion is a highly demanding ask, as well as managing other ongoing aspects of product management throughout. It’s a time of additional pressure for in-house marketing teams.


On-packs are still a very valid engagement tool in 2018 but modern marketers need to be smart about how they allocate and use resources to ensure the best ROI. They also need to be clear about what their primary goal for the promotion is; growing sales, boosting customer relationships, or changing buying habits.

Big FMCG brands who run multiple on-packs, sometimes across multiple territories and through different time scales, need immaculate planning and execution and can still deliver hit-and-miss results. Streamlining the on-pack promotions management process or centralising the process utilising a promotions management framework such as Jaywing’s Frontrunner is an ideal way to optimise the planning, execution, and evaluation of on-packs.

Talk to us today if you’d like to understand further how we can help your brand save time, money, and resource on on-pack promotions.