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"The packaging is the message"

"The packaging is the message"

Packaging is a promise, an almost intoxicating reward ritual - even for self-purchased items, as psychologists have researched.The first impression which is manifested by consumers within seconds, has a lasting impact on their relationship. Günter Thomas turned it into a business. His company GT Trendhouse 42 refines packaging. "Veiling is a promise", he says.

The more luxury, the more elaborate the robe. After all, who does not want to displace the fact that we are not kings, but only customers, one of millions of consumers. So packaging is beautiful: It is pleasing to the eye, concealing the the profit margin and suggests to stand out from the bulk."The packaging is the message," confirms Günter Thomas.

In 1970 Günter Thomas started to refine print products with a start-up capital of 2000 Deutsche Mark in Gelsenkirchen-Rotthausen.Gloss and matt varnishes set the first optical unique selling points on paper and cardboard.GT now leads five companies at three locations in in Western Germany with a workforce of 100 employees and a turnover of millions of Euros. The clientele is international: From the Dalli Group (Tandil) and the company Mäurer & Wirtz (4711) to Lufthansa, Chanel and Dior.

"Aim at the heart and hit the wallet", Günter Thomas reveals the approach he has been successfully pursuing with GT Trendhouse 42 for five decades now. The packaging expert points to a packaging of washing tabs on the table. This packaging is primarily about protection, so that the cleaning power is maintained even with high temperature fluctuations. The focus here is on the robustness of the cover, but also on the design, a lush meadow green, an indication of cleanliness and nature - both messages that are implied in the tabs.

The procedure for luxury goods such as watches, bags or whiskey is different. The GT team reaches deeply into the bag of tricks and breathes a breath of life into the carrier material.

It has a structure, it glitters or even smells. Paper that not only looks like snake leather, but also feels like it. It is amazing how the haptic fascinates the senses.

"Where the eyes don’t stop, the feet move on", Günter Thomas explains the interplay between waking up and covering needs behind every packaging. Attention, curiosity or moods have to work immediately, almost at first glance. Especially in difficult sales environments, which are characterized by strong competition or the hurry of potential buyers, such as mostly in retail and on the Internet.

The human being is a creature of habit. He wants to recognize what he is buying. "You are worth it to me!", the viewer has to be suggested. "The customer stands in front of the shelf and has his favorite brand immediately in view, he recognizes it by the color, the shape or is tempted to buy it because of the design.”, Thomas continues. In the best case, the packaging gives an iconic character to the content, a distinctive identity. Günter Thomas likes to explain this with the sentence: "Without the blue box, Nivea would only be white mass."

So a packer is also an artist? A bit, says Thomas, but he is not Christo. Although both have the same goal, because who packs something, changes the content. Recent examples in cooperation with the world's largest book manufacturer Bertelsmann / Mohn Media: The cover of the “Guinness Book of World Records” or "Prince - The Beautiful Ones", the unfinished autobiography of the superstar Prince, who died in 2016. The unapproachable artist invites his fans to participate in his glamorous life. A sensual and highly emotionally presented book, furnished lavishly and elegantly with a golden ribbon, photos with cover paper, embossed linen binding in purple and cover in bright gold. Which brings us back to the beginning: "Veiling is promise".

By Nikos Kimerlis - WAZ from 02/11/2020

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