Strategies & Insights

International Brand Experts Connect in Philadelphia for Global Design Source

Posted: November 1, 2009

Global design leaders converged on Philadelphia last week, displaying brands from around the world in the Global Design Source (GDS) Exhibit, "The Global Brandscape - Connecting with Consumers."

Plymouth Meeting-based Bailey Brand Consulting hosted the week-long event, bringing together its international alliance of branding and design leaders to create a map of how brands are built and consumers are engaged all over the world.

"Across different countries and cultures, the power of a brand engages consumers on an emotional level, capturing their attention and delivering an experience that keeps them coming back for more," said Christopher Bailey, president of Bailey Brand Consulting. "For one week, Philadelphians had a glimpse of how leading experts build brands."

The first exhibit of its kind in the U.S., Global Brandscape offered audiences a chance to explore the connections among brand, culture, and consumer, November 7 to 14 in the Rotunda at One Liberty Place.

Samples of work by the GDS members highlighted the various cultural influences on brand building and the contrasting approaches towards visual and structural design, packaging, branding strategy, and building consumer knowledge.

Bailey added local flavor to the event with the Global Tastykake Challenge. GDS members explored how this iconic Philadelphia brand could be adapted for consumers in other countries, redesigning a popular Tastykake package as if they were launching the brand in their home countries.

GDS member IG Design of Paris saw a unique opportunity for Tastykake products in a French market already crowded with cakes for children and adults. They recognized the potential appeal of the Peanut Butter Kandy Kakes as a relative novelty. IG Design created a package that emphasized the product's American origins, setting the product against a stylized American flag background. They also renamed the product "Kandy Peanuts" to emphasize its unique flavor.

Grupoerre Rousselot of Barcelona faced the opposite challenge, since peanut butter is simply not popular in Spain. They changed the product and the name to "Cake with Caramel" to appeal to the Spanish consumer. The design team softened the package design, setting the product against a gently curving background to symbolize a "flag" waving to years gone by. The logo also was smoothed to suggest it was written with a pastry tip. Discerning Spanish customers expect ample product information, so the team used easy-to-read fonts on the ingredients label to quickly communicate essential details.

Frankfurt-based khDesign recognized that American-themed packaging would not work in the German snack cake market, where such color palettes and design would relegate Tastykakes to the lower end of the market.

Proad Identity of Taipei also quickly realized that they would need to change more than the packaging. Recognizing that super-sweet cakes and cookies would not be a great fit for consumers in Taipei, Proad transformed the Krimpet brand into a wholesome, organic baked good, targeted towards female consumers between ages 20 and 30. The result: Organic Muesli Chocolate Krimpets. With package design featuring an earthy color palette and detailed product photographs, the design team was able to convey a product rich in whole grains, not sugar.