Innovation, Trend

Interview: Connected Packaging. When physical and digital world merge.

27/10/2023 | 8 min read
Charlotte Enzelsberger

Interview: Connected Packaging. When physical and digital world merge.

Connected packaging applications have a 14% scan rate, much higher than digital advertising campaigns. Consumers now see QR codes as a normal way to access branded content, games, and experiences – and they’re happy to share their personal data in exchange for this value add. Combined with the rise of connected packaging experiences, brands are likely to increase their investment in this supercharged media channel like never before. By using the data collected via connected packaging, brands are finding patterns and predictions invaluable to inform product development, marketing and customer targeting strategies which increasingly rely on these global strategies for connected packaging. Another major driver, in both consumer usage and brand investment, is the new EU-wide rules on packaging, also known as the EU Circular Economy Package, which have already had a significant impact on packaging companies across the European Union. 

Connected Packaging educates and engages the consumer. It offers an efficient and cost-effective way to collect first party data, understand consumer preferences, develop products, run loyalty programs and communicate directly with customers in real time, as well as a simple way to improve credentials.

How often are connected packaging applications integrated in packaging? How will the share develop in the future? 

Connected packaging is increasingly being integrated into packaging solutions, as companies recognize the value they bring to both consumers and businesses. The frequency of connected packaging integration is expected to rise in the future. Consumer demand for more engaging and informative packaging experiences is on the rise, pushing brands to adopt these technologies. Additionally, advancements in data analytics are making it easier for companies to track and analyse consumer interactions with connected packaging, providing valuable insights for marketing strategies. 

As the technology becomes more affordable and accessible, we can anticipate a significant increase in the adoption of connected packaging applications, further enhancing the consumer's journey and benefiting businesses through data-driven marketing opportunities.  

In addition, connected packaging is fully GDPR compliant and all data is first party as customers willingly and knowingly share their details are fully protected when interacting with connected experiences.  

What new technological developments are to be expected?

Smart packaging offers authentication and traceability, allowing customers to check the origination and authenticity of a product. This is particularly popular with luxury brands to discourage copies or imitations of expensive items such as whiskey and face creams. The use of sensors, RFID tags, and QR codes to provide customers with information about the product and its journey from the manufacturer to the end-user. 

With the growing trend towards e-commerce, there has been an increasing focus on personalised packaging solutions. Companies are using innovative technologies to create custom packaging that meets the individual needs of each customer. There are numerous examples of digital packing being created in smaller batches to ensure exclusivity and personalisation, which is a simple process when sharing information via a QR code added to a carton or box. 

These two-dimensional barcodes could serve as a media channel, allowing brands to offer consumers more information about their products, such as sustainability data, origin details, instructions, recipes, and more. It can also help guide consumers to specific information according to their needs, such as different language versions, all from scanning a single QR code. 

Augmented Reality (AR) is a popular tool to showcase products or even use for fun photo filters which are incredibly popular and highly shareable on social media. Artificial intelligence (AI) offers a way to adapt content in real time (depending on the weather, time of year or customer interest etc) and handle mass data quickly and easily at the touch of a button to create a more relevant, improved and personalised customer experience. 

What potential do these applications hold for environmental protection?

Manufacturers and businesses are increasingly adopting environmentally friendly packaging solutions and exploring the potential of connected packaging. Aligned to environmental and policy considerations, connected packaging and the wider technology supporting it provides a smart way to make packaging more sustainable, while educating and engaging customers. 

Our recent survey showed that increased investment in digital marketing spend is planned in 2023 by 88% of those surveyed vs. 59% in 2022. The results showed that connected packaging is deemed increasingly important as a sustainable way to connect with and educate customers (57%) and it is perceived by almost half (44%) to be becoming the main route to communicate directly with customers.  

About Jenny Stanley & Appetite Creative

Jenny Stanley, Founder and Managing Director, Appetite Creative 

Jenny has over 20 years experience in international sales management across the media, advertising and creative technology industries. Founder of multi award-winning digital experiences studio Appetite Creative, her mission is to lead creative technology in digital advertising. 


Appetite Creative

Appetite Creative, the digital experiences studio, connects brands to today’s audiences. Specialising in using innovative technology to deliver connected brand experiences which help advertisers to better understand audiences, optimise marketing, drive sales, and improve two-way customer communications.  

The team of digital marketing specialists, with a passion for bringing innovative advertising to life, deliver bespoke campaigns and advertising solutions across all devices and screens.   

The studio works with a variety of recognisable brands including Bacardi, Tetra Pak, Pepsi, Starbucks, Samsung, Vodafone and Coca-Cola. 


For more information: 



Related articles