Procter and Gamble is widely cited for coining the phrase “first moment of truth” (FMOT) to describe the importance of where a shopper is standing in front of a brand/packaging in the aisle ready to make a purchase.
Before consumers can consume the brand, they have to choose it from the shelf. The packaging makes that first important impression on the shopper. Shoppers are looking for the shape, color, etc. and will often decide whether or not they are going to buy your product through the first impression, which is usually made through the packaging in store.
The packaging is also the key to a long-term relationship with the brand. Is there any other vehicle that shoppers/consumers interact with more 24/7 than the packaging? From the time they notice your brand on the shelf and then purchase it, to its storage, use and reuse – hopefully over and over again. You form a personal relationship with and an attachment to the brand through the packaging.
Packaging is the one medium that really can result in a physical relationship with the consumer.