Engaging Today’s Connected Consumers

Thursday, October 26th, 2017

There is no denying that marketing products on social media platforms is necessary to engage millennials as they are spending more time on the web and their mobile devices.  By Farah Nazurah

Libby Costin, vice president marketing and product management, Tetra Pak South Asia, East Asia and Oceania, speaks with APFI on how manufacturers can connect with millenial consumers and increase their brand presence.


Today’s millennial consumers are connected on social media, how can companies leverage on this to widen their brand presence?


Engage the ‘super leaders’. Our company’s 2017 annual report on the global trends and opportunities shaping the future of food and drink industry identified a key target group—the ‘super leaders’. Online for more than six hours a day, they are highly vocal and likely to be the earliest of adopters, influencers, and trendsetters.

Spread around the world and comprising just seven percent of the online population, more than half (57 percent) of them write brand and/or product reviews every week, and nearly two-thirds (65 percent) say they are more likely to do so after a positive experience.

How companies can then leverage on this information to widen market presence is to generate interaction by creating content that is not just attention grabbing but engaging and encourages two-way interaction to improve brand perception and the company’s commitment to consumers.


What are some of the ways that today’s consumers can engage with packaging?


Consumers are looking for food and beverage packaging that offers greater functionality designed for on-the-go lifestyles. Personalised products greatly add value for today’s connected consumer to share interesting innovations, thereby bringing great opportunities for brands through increased organic social presence.

Digital technologies offer brands numerous exciting options, but they will need to choose the option that best suits their aims in a specific market. Some may want to demonstrate enhanced traceability, others may opt for a way of creating an interactive consumer experience.

Today only seven percent of packaging is printed digitally, but that is projected to grow significantly. For example, the company sold close to 190 billion packages globally in 2016, you can see that the potential reach of digital packages is substantially greater than any social media platform.


How can food manufacturers provide an accessible and traceable story to their consumers, especially with traceability becoming increasingly important to consumers?


Food traceability is becoming more important as consumers want to ascertain the origin of products, ingredients and their attributes. To meet this demand, manufactures can use digital technologies such as QR codes on packaging to help consumers to seek more information through its packaging.

Connecting the consumer directly from QR code to the brand site, where full traceability is offered to meet all customers’ expectations is one of the most effective tools that helps build trust and fosters the relationship between a brand and its consumer.


As food safety is increasingly becoming a concern for consumers, how can manufacturers help alleviate these concerns?


Food safety is the cornerstone of our business. In order to provide safe, secure and sustainable products to customers and consumers—and to do so responsibly—we need to continually find new ways to meet the evolving expectations of the market. This means understanding the diverse needs of our customers, while at the same time finding sustainable ways to feed a fast-growing population.

Although there are many solutions that address this concern in today’s market, one of the leading technologies has been the ultra-high temperature (UHT) treatment. This has revolutionised the food and beverage industry as well as the way food is protected. In addition, UHT products fit into our demanding lifestyles more than ever by offering consumers safe, nutritious and convenient solutions.

Utilising UHT packaging technology offers six primary consumer benefits:

  • Food and beverages are safe for immediate consumption.
  • Nutrition and flavours are protected.
  • Products can be kept at room temperature without refrigeration.
  • No added preservatives.
  • The carton’s light weight requires less energy output for logistics and storage.
  • Convenient packaging solutions for on-the-go consumption.


How Are Consumer Trends In Asia Pacific Influencing The Food Industry’s Packaging Sector?


Asia’s consumers are more demanding and expect food and drink products to improve their quality of life and self-image, while remaining tasty, desirable, attractive and interesting. At the same time, the region is constantly on the lookout for shortcut solutions to attaining fresh nutritious and customisable meals, while also fulfilling the requirement of promoting good health and striking a healthy balance.