Can promoting sharing on a label increase sales?

Odds are, by now you have seen Coke's latest campaign on their packaging labels. Labels urging consumers to "Share a Coke with John!"  have created a new trend in label design, and even prompted a recent study at the Georgetown Institute for Consumer Research. 

The study, the results of which were analyzed in The Huffington Post, set out to measure whether a reminder about sharing could really affect sales. 

Dr. Ishani Banerji, the creator and lead author of the study, created a simple experiment. Participants were shown an image of a bag of chips, much like the one above, but with three labeling options:

  • One group with no label. 
  • One group with a label reading "Sharing Size."
  • One group with a label reading "King Size."

The results showed that the bag described as "sharing size" was the most likely to be chosen. In total, 96 participants chose the bag labeled "sharing size," 71 chose "King Size" and 67 chose the bag with no label. 

Banerji argued that the "sharing size" label was most popular because it allowed consumers to justify their purchase and feel less guilty about what they were buying. The research also found that women were more likely to purchase the bag, with a 20 percent boost for women and a 9 percent boost for men. 

Manufacturers can take advantage of the information gained from these consumer studies before the market is saturated, by investing in their own printing equipment. Not only does this investment sever the reliance on a third-party provider, it eliminates long turn-around periods and allows for significant cost savings by printing the exact quantity of labels your organization needs. 

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