more than just a bag of potato chips

How small experiential details make a difference

I write a lot about the importance of creating compelling experiences that extend beyond the sale. part of the strategy I built into the imperfect foods private label program included a "what happens next" approach to the process.

For example, Imperfect Foods was introducing a line of kettle chips with a sea salt flavor profile supporting the initial launch. With snacks being the second largest category I personally wanted to set the precedent with the design and creative.

the creative and design for this range needed to be playful, fun, and easily decoded in the online shopping experience.

I immediately gravitated to a nautical theme. I sketched out the typography and started building out a color story; and then I thought, "this most definitely needs a sea monster." I illustrated a Nessie and a ship in a paper cut-out style and built-out the matrix ensuring the line could scale to other flavor profiles. (The Himalayan sea salt chips appropriately features a Yeti.)

It occurred to me that the story didn't really fit the vibe of the design so I asked my copywriter if they could write a sea shanty and she came up with this:

Theeerrrrrrrrreee once was fair-fried kettle chip, whos’ fine flakes drew sailors to shore. For none could compare to a chip oh so rare one taste, and you must have more! Through storm andthrough thunder, sea beasts andpirates plunder, they’d sail straight through the night, until aha! Thar!Just in sight! ‘Twas the glimmer of the Sea Salt Kettle Chip,  The salty snack ofsailors’ delight.

this could have easily been wrapped up at this point; however, My feeling was that there was still an additional opportunity to create a fantastical experience beyond the bag of chips.

What if we animated the chip bag? Even better, could we actually record the sea shanty? Having fronted many indie bands back in the day, I dusted off my recording gear and hammered out an original score. I contacted a former Trader Joe's alum to animate the visual assets and essentially we had ourselves a little sea shanty music video.

On the backside of the package we placed a QR code that takes the customer to the animation via YouTube.

The value of this effort extends beyond package design. Cumulatively over time each successive product becomes synonymous with unexpected delight. It's these tertiary bits of whimsy that create memorable brand experiences that endure.

the team

Copywriter: Meghan Proulx
Animator: Bill Main


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