The Influence of Packaging and Brand Image

Effective packaging design has a major impact on brand image and sales, and there are few better examples of that than YETI. The premium coolers claim to be the ultimate in performance and durability, made to withstand any wild, epic adventure. The imagery associated with the products is often backcountry skiers, deep sea fishers, and other outdoor enthusiasts. The packaging of the products reflects the same image by being bold, yet simple and eco-friendly. The popular YETI Rambler Tumblers are packaged with a wraparound tag that leverages form and function. The product is positioned as tough and durable so it isn’t “protected” by any type of corrugate shell at shelf-level, but instead is ready to be held and felt, immediately communicating its “strength” by packaging with less material and letting the product speak for itself. On the tag, the brand name is largely promoted and all product information is provided. The tag also utilizes a removable spot adhesive coupled with a permanent adhesive to adhere to itself, eliminating adhesive waste and allowing the label to be cleanly removed.


Yeti Rambler

The influence brand has on consumers

Lesser known off brand, RTIC Coolers, is relatively newer in the cooler and drinkware field. The brand positions its coolers as being half the price of YETI and able to hold more ice. RTIC posted a 10 Day Ice Challenge video that compares the “ice life” of the coolers. The video highlights the extremely similar design of the coolers and shows the “ice life” of the RTIC coolers being longer than that of YETI.


Consumers have also done their own in-depth studies to compare the two brands that show the coolers are of equal performance and durability. The material and construction of RTIC products have been shown to be almost an exact copy of YETI’s products.


RTIC vs YETI

Image from thecoolerzone.com


Even with this data on quality widely available and the YETI’s product price point being more than double RTIC’s, the brand image of YETI often ends up being the deciding purchasing factor for many consumers. As a user involved in a RTIC vs YETI conversation on Reddit (a popular social news and discussion site) stated “If I go with RTIC, I won’t be able to brag I have a YETI- and that’s paramount…” The cool, loud, wild brand image and strong company reputation of YETI has been able to sway many consumers away from purchasing the similar, if not equal, lesser priced products of RTIC.


“If I go with RTIC, I won’t be able to brag I have a YETI- and that’s paramount…”

-Coralrives, Reddit User


As with many other consumer products, a strong, consistent brand image is important for establishing a memorable identity. The YETI packaging design is a major reason why at the shelf-level, YETI is winning—not just winning on sales volume, but also with higher margins. Knowing your demographic well like YETI does, as well as other strong brands such as Apple with its clean, minimalist packaging, will help your brand to speak for itself.


Is your packaging boosting sales? Talk to Rocket Industrial about how your retail packaging strategies can impact sales.