Stroll the aisles of any liquor store, supermarket or drug store and you will see hundreds of products with labels vying for your attention. But if you look closely at any one particular product you will also notice that every one of the product labels are identical. Of course, you think, it has to be that way. Well, with today's digital label printing technology that is no longer the case.
You could use "variable imaging" technology on your product labels, to really make your products stand out. With variable imaging every label could be completely unique, you could have a different image on every label. Now. keeping in mind that you probably want to maintain a consistent brand across your labels, you wouldn't want to make every component of the label different, but you could take a portion of your label and use this powerful technology to your advantage.
Let's take a hypothetical example to illustrate this point. Say you sell bottled water under the "Lightning Spring Water" brand, and you have a picture of some lightning featured on the label. What you could do is take 100 or more photographs (photos are very inexpensive to buy now at places like iStockPhoto or BigStockPhoto) and print a random assortment of these on your labels. So on the shelf in the store every bottle of water will have a different photograph.
There are many other products where variable imaging would work very well. In the wine industry, a high percentage of wine sales come from people perusing labels in the liquor store. A wine that had a different image on every label would really stand out from the crowd and you might find people wanting to buy more than one bottle and use it as a talking point.
Children's products provide an even more compelling argument for variable imaging. Picture this situation in the store. You are buying juice for your child, and you want the orange mango flavor. Every label features a different animal, and your child can't choose between the one with the cat, the koala and the penguin. Inevitably you buy a bottle of all three, even though you were really intending on just buying one.
Any company selling products in a retail store can take advantage of variable imaging. The fact is there are virtually no companies doing this right now and if you are the first in your category you will be able to create a buzz. The potential for word of mouth marketing here is huge - the different labels could become a compelling reason to buy your product. I predict this will become common place within 5 years so the first companies to take advantage of variable imaging will have a head start on everyone else.