We take a holistic approach to package design.

Industrial Design

Industrial Design

Nothing gets lost in translation.

Our industrial designers’ main focus is on new package development for consumer packaged goods, and we're trained in both the creative talent and manufacturing know-how needed to develop successful marketplace solutions. Through our visual communication skills, artistic flair and a keen eye for detail, we can take what a consumer and/or customer wants and transform it into new packaging concepts to test and validate.  

Capabilities

  • Product & package design expertise
  • Front-end innovation expertise
  • Facilitation of brainstorming sessions
  • Human factors, ergonomics, & design thinking expertise
  • Conceptual ideation
  • Sketch and storyboard communication
  • Photo-realistic, graphic renderings
  • Conceptual prototype development

Graphic Design

Graphic Design

Our graphic design professionals leverage a skilled understanding of visual brand communication from a holistic perspective to help create distinctive brand expressions that articulate the product message in a clear and compelling way. Visual positioning, brand identity, brand architecture, brand guidelines, graphic system implementation, and artwork production are all important aspects of our graphics services.

A brand’s design potential is fully realized when graphics and structure unite at their full potential. The harmonization of graphic communication, sculptural expression, tangible interaction and functional delivery excites the senses and creates a profound and memorable brand or product experience through holistic design.

Engineering

Engineering

Mechanical engineers ensure that conceptual designs are optimized and engineered for successful commercialization. We believe that creativity is more than pie-in-the-sky ideation: true ingenuity is creating a compelling and memorable design that can effectively get to market and to the consumer.

With our extensive knowledge of design for molding and high-speed manufacturing automation, we work closely with our clients’ supply chain and manufacturing partners to ensure that design integrity is maintained as new products are brought to market. Our engineers are also uniquely trained in the nuances of industrial design to ensure that sculptural intent is upheld as sketches are brought to life and manifested in 3-D.

With an exceptional knowledge of complex modeling, our engineers ensure that nothing is lost in translation throughout the design journey.

Consumer Research

Consumer Research

We know how to research for effective design innovation. We’ve been conducting objective and reliable research that effectively connects the problem solvers to the problem in order to produce actionable results.

Our proven process unites the objectivity and investigative skills of the researcher with the expertise and knowledge of our in-house designers and engineers, enabling the most accurate and effective design evaluation and refinement. 

The result? Focused, pertinent and unbiased insights with the depth to inform design and the grounding to inspire innovation for the real world, not just the blue sky.

Capabilities

• Choice modeling
• Conjoint analysis
• One-on-ones, dyads, triads & focus groups (moderators certified through The Burke Institute in Qualitative and Quantitative Research)
• Quantitative & qualitative CLTs
• Ethnography
• Shelf & use tests
• Panel management (1200+)
• Surveys (online and in-person)
• Video diaries
• In-home use tests (online and in-person)
• Brand strategy development
• Eye-tracking (on shelf, on package, in store and at Clemson)

Ideation

Ideation

Establishing a clear strategic vision for package development before putting pen to paper through ideation sessions is where we bring consumer desires to visual translation, and ultimately to packaging solutions.

In a world of dwindling attention spans and precious few seconds to communicate the right message in a meaningful way, it is more critical than ever for design to be set up for success through a firm strategic foundation that translates your brand’s vision into the most appropriate design language. Take advantage of the expertise we can bring -- we offer two innovation mentors certified through the Notre Dame Certified Innovations Mentor Program (CIMp)™ -- to help ideate the optimal solution.

Capabilities

• Design
• Brand leadership
• Engineering
• Operations
• Mockups (to help tell the story)
• 3-D modeling
• Animation

Prototyping

Prototyping

We simulate real-world environments, using real-world manufacturing and materials, to test real-world solutions. We have the ability to rapidly prototype rigid and flexible package designs through several technologies, including sample and mockup capability and 3-D printing, and just as rapidly understand their potential on a retail shelf -- as well as their impact on the environment.

Our pilot plant produces short runs of packaging to get an idea of how well the package performs in a manufacturing environment, including food-fill capabilities. Once the packaging is produced, our physical and analytical labs test everything from how it holds up at high altitudes, to how well it can withstand impact, to how well it protects the product inside from external environmental factors, to how the package holds up under extreme heat or cold. 

Capabilities

  • State-of-the-art product and process design
  • Rapid prototyping
  • 3-D printing
  • Food-fill
  • Reverse engineering and first article inspection scanning
  • Performance simulation software

Lab Testing

Lab Testing

TEMPO accelerated shelf-life modeling

Sonoco's proprietary TEMPO system of mathematically modeling shelf life is a fast, cost-effective method to determine the unique barrier needs of a particular product in various environments — and it can reduce shelf life testing time by as much as 80%. It’s useful when you’re changing packaging formats, working on a new product or product formulation, or even altering your distribution environment.

Ultimately, shelf life modeling can help you determine the optimal packaging barrier for your product, predict likely shelf life in various environments, and identify packaging optimization opportunities. Using software to model shelf life as a screening tool signifcantly enhances your chances of setting up a representative shelf life study on the first try, minimizing the trial-and-error process and maximizing your speed of innovation and speed to market.

PiQET Lifecycle Analysis

PIQET is a streamlined lifecycle assessment tool designed to assess the environmental impacts and resource consumption profiles of different packaging options.

Finite Element Analysis (FEA)

Finite element analysis (FEA) can be used as a complement to traditional testing to analyze your packaging's structures and systems, as well as determine how the substances and substrates will interact or react to external stresses. 

Manufacturing

Manufacturing

Pilot Plant Capabilities

  • Pilot manufacturing for rigid paper, rigid plastic and flexible packaging
  • Sheet/tube extrusion, injection molding, thermoforming and extrusion blow molding
  • Printing, laminating, coating/slitting, rewinding and precision-scoring

Related Lab Capabilities

  • Microscopy, physical and analytical testing
  • Accelerated shelf life testing
  • Distribution/abuse testing
  • Fill/flush/seal various packaging formats, retort processing

Food Fill Capabilities

  • FDA-certified

 

What Our Customers Have To Say

Thank you so much for a job well done! The prototypes and concepts helped us visually explain how convenience can improve consumers’ experience with our brands and set us apart. Management was able to visualize what we are trying to achieve. The sense of urgency of your team was amazing and much appreciated. 

-Director of Brand Management, baking brand

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Team up with the Hive mind.

The more perspectives we have, the more we know. Reach out today to leverage our team of researchers, marketing and merchandising specialists, R&D professionals and manufacturing experts. And rest assured that with a packaging-neutral approach, you’ll end up with the solution that’s perfect for your product and your brand.

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