Packvertising: Out Of The Box Advertising That Saves Money

Aleksandra Owczarek
Aleksandra Owczarek | 5 min read

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Packvertising is a daring way to make cheaper, better ads by baking them in product packaging.

Traditional paid marketing is expensive, and costs only seem to keep growing and growing.

Many brands of all shapes and sizes sink a lot of money into paid advertising and don’t always reap the benefits they should. 

But what if your ad budget can’t compete with your competitors?

When you advertise against a big spender, you’ll burn through any budget you have. 

You’ve got to innovate or you’ll be left in the dust.

 After you’ve read this article, you’ll learn:

  • How packvertising can outsmart big ad budgets
  • The ways direct marketing can outsmart big ad budgets
  • How packvertising builds a relationship with your customer

As a bonus, you’ll get a couple of cool packvertising examples near the end.

Packvertising - outsmarting the Big Spenders

Over 70% of customers make impulse buys: they grab a product just because they like what they see.

Playing to statistics like these is a great way to take on larger competitors. 

One clever trick to entice the snap buy is—packvertising.

Packvertising is a clever trick of using packaging for advertising. It’s what happens when packaging and advertising meet. 

product boxes from packhelp for buva boutique

See how Buva Boutique uses packvertising on their packaging design

Packvertising is a nimble, low-budget advertising trick. 

It focuses on the very first impression with the customerthe one made in the store.

Through making a first impression, you can immediately get down to one of the main meanings of advertising, relationship building!

This tactic is a great way to get in front of your potential customer before your competitors paid advertising does so. 

To steal those sales, your product has to stand out on the shelf. 


With creative, clever packaging design that sparks the imagination.

Use DesignBro to design and order your custom packaging with Packhelp - Click here to see how!

Not only does creative and clever design help you outmanoeuvre your rivals, but it also helps you in developing a relationship with the customer right there. 

That’s your advantage smaller brands have over larger ones - you can afford to be creative and thus build a relationship with your customer. 

All while larger brands months to greenlight an idea.

Traditional Marketing Is Too Crowded

In the real world, people develop blind spots for ads. They go to the store, make a beeline for their groceries and zoom past everything else.

Big brands compensate by saturating the online and the real world with ads. They make the customers’ blind spot even larger.

Learn more about online marketing strategies for an offline retail store

Even then, online, 30% of desktop and 40% of laptop users already use an adblocker. It’s mostly mobile users that get to see your ad until they too start using an adblocker.

A small company like yours can’t afford to ‘power through’ adblockers buy using alternative methods, and only a few can afford to shovel money into traditional marketing. 

This is where innovation and experimentation can be key. 

Gamification of your online store and ecommerce AI are just a few innovative ecommerce marketing ideas.

But experimenting with packvertising costs you very little but gives you valuable insights about the market and the customers. 

Using that information, you can outsmart the big spenders.

Marketing directly to your customers (also called direct marketing) offers value for money - and it's on the rise

Direct Marketing on the Rise

A small company can afford to innovate with direct marketing.

The risk is much lower but the payoff is way higher.

When you combine packvertising with:

  • social media
  • Content marketing

you get a marketing synergy that costs little but can pay off big time.

Instead of spending the money on ads, you can spend it on developing eye-catching packaging design

You get a unique, innovative design that has a synergy with all your other marketing. 

Don't spend money to splatter your ads all over the place. Use packvertising and your packaging goes directly in the customer’s hands.

Unique and innovative marketing avoids the customers’ blind spot and attracts their attention. They want to touch your product, play with it, buy it and show it to others.

That’s the entire secret of direct marketing—you are engaging the customer directly. In that way, you have a real conversation through package design.

Custom mailer boxes for a sustainable pad brand Fluus

Packvertising is one of the few ways of marketing which can also create a personalized interaction with each one of your different customers. 

This creates a huge advantage for the company that uses packvertising because it can directly communicate and interact with each of their customers.

How Packvertising can create a relationship with your customer

Customers want direct interaction with companies they’re buying from. 

They also want a positive experience when buying and using the product. 

Packvertising does both. 

Through clever and fresh packaging design choices, the customer gets a positive and unique experience that builds trust and a rapport. 

Packvertising keeps giving to the customer even at home. High-end packaging adds value to the product and therefore your brand. 


bmw boxes

See how BMW used luxury packaging to improve the test driver's experience of the new BMW X6

When your customer talks about your product amongst friends, the packaging leaves a positive first impression on them, and again adds perceived value to your product. 

More and more, customers want to not just see a product, but experience it. 

That’s where creative packaging design comes in. 

Gorgeous colours entice touching and the visual consumption of your product. 

Loella Cosmetics makeup brushes packaging

See how Loella Cosmetics use vibrant colours to strengthen their branding

This is also where the relationship-building part comes in.

Once the customer sees a packvertising effort done by a company, the association between your brand and its design is made.

Through this association, the first seeds of trust are built.

Sustainable packaging is one of the ways to create trust with your brand. Kuyichi, an organic denim brand, have chosen eco-conscious fashion packaging in line with their mission statement:



Customers want to be proud of what they’ve bought and show it to everyone. Companies that understand and fulfil this want through packvertising can reap enormous benefits.

Through the usage of packvertising, the customer cannot only see the advertising, like they’re used to, they also get the ability to feel the advertising with their own hands. 

This adds to the active experience that packvertising brings to the customer, and that sense of activity makes customers value the advertisement even more.

Here are a few cool examples of packvertising:

Examples of Packvertising

Happy Socks

You’ve got a bunch of socks and they’re all in neutral colours: black, white, grey.

What Happy Socks realized is that, just like clothes, socks can influence the wearer’s mood.

So, Happy Socks went crazy with colours and fun designs to spread the happiness.

happy socks

Click here to learn more about Happy Socks and their unique packaging suite

Every pair of socks includes customized sock packaging that complements the product.

Limited series of socks let Happy Socks experiment with new ideas and designs.

An esteemed designer, such as Keith Haring, also worked with Happy Socks.

This made the customized, limited edition a valuable collector’s item.

Happy Socks puts a lot of effort in the unboxing experience.

Their “inside print” option adds a nice touch to the packaging.

People, who see their friends and family buy these socks often call the company to ask: “Where can I buy the packaging?”

Packaging design becomes a very strong selling point for the socks.

Every time the customer handles the packaging, there is the same happiness as when the socks are worn.

By dedicating the same attention to the product and the packaging, Happy Socks spreads happiness.

Socks and the packvertising promote the mission statement customers join by buying and wearing socks.    



Roseshire shows how packvertising can be made for social media.

Roseshire sells boxes of roses for that one special person but they don’t do retail. So, the company does not need traditional ads.

Instead, it can use social media influencers to market its product. That’s where the fun begins.

There's something mysterious about Roseshire roses

The customers ask: “What is it? Where can I buy one?”

Instead of rushing customers to buy, Roseshire lets them take their time.

Customers can savour the experience, just like with roses.

Packvertising online follows a trend known as “unboxing”.

It means there’s a mystery box and the audience slowly discovers what’s inside.

The influencer, who can add his or her flair to the unboxing, guides the excitement of discovery.

If you couldn’t find the Roseshire logo, it’s on the underside of the package lid.


In Russia, the granny makes the homemade pickled veggies.

She gifts them to the entire family.

It's a beautiful tradition. Babushka’s brand of pickled veggies shows packvertising inspired by that tradition.

Light, transparent labelling on the jar lets the customer see all the veggies inside.

The customer can pick up the jar in the store and look around inside it.

The interaction has begun and the customer is starting to play with the packaging.

Babushka means “granny”. The entire packaging is centred on the concept of granny’s pickled veggies.

Because grannies use little to no labelling, their jars look just like a Babushka product.

The Babushka packvertising presents pickled veggies. They are exactly like how granny used to make them.


Packvertising Is A Daring Approach To Direct Marketing

 Traditional advertising simplifies the product. The purpose of traditional ads is to sell as much as possible as soon as possible but they ignore the purchasing experience.

The conversation with the customer is one-sided and simplified. The customer is told what to do.

Packvertising introduces another layer to the product—the packaging.

The purpose of packvertising is to make the purchasing experience as fun as possible.

SHEYN packaging design

See how Sheyn uses custom packaging to improve their customer's buying experience

There is a direct conversation with the customer, who is treated as an equal.

The customer is invited to engage with the product and play with it.

Note how packvertising provides much greater transparency compared to traditional ads

  • Happy Socks lets the customers choose their own packaging
  • Roseshire unboxes the rose package in front of the viewer
  • Babushka shows as many pickled veggies as possible so the customer knows what’s inside each jar

 Thanks to packvertising, the customer knows much more about the product and how it’s made.

Instead of hiding the story behind the product, the packaging now highlights it.


Ads and traditional marketing have a high bar to entry and a diminishing return on investment.

If you do regular ads, you’re fighting an uphill battle against big spenders.

Packvertising is a cheap, powerful alternative to regular ads.

It engages customers and entices them to play with the product.

Packaging is an underused way to deliver fun stuff.


Don’t just sink cash in traditional marketing.

The ad space needs innovation.

It needs cheaper, better ads.

Do you dare make some? Come innovate with packvertising with your reliable design partner, DesignBro.



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