Game Marketing Tips, Analysis, and News

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Package Copy Fun 2010

It's time for this year's crazy packaging winner. After painstakingly reviewing thousands of new toys and games (Really! I volunteer at Toys For Tots every year), I found this gem. Ah, a remote-controlled toy truck and trailer, you think, looking at the photo at the top of the package. The title is vaguely wrong: "Remote Control Summer Fun". Well, I guess it applies to going on summer vacation... but then it says "Safari & Sporty Car". I don't think most Americans go on safari for summer fun... and probably not in a sporty car, if they do. But we do get bullet points!

  • Forward
  • Reverse
  • Turns In Reverse
  • Use 2 Penlight Batteries (Not Included)
As bullet points go they are less than overwhelming... I'm not sure that "Turns In Reverse" is a must-have feature. But "Penlight Batteries"? I believe that term dates from the 1970's. In any case, I don't think I'd put Not Included as a major bullet-point level feature designed to get people to buy my toy.

There are some more things to call your attention to with this package. Let's look at the top:
See, there are two different versions of this toy... and the vehicles are Interchangable! I believe that means Mr. Chang, clearly the man who wrote the package copy, can switch from vehicle to vehicle.

If we look at the back of the package, the selling points of the toy are made even clearer:

OK, maybe they just repeat the bullet points from the front. Why work harder to translate additional text? My favorite part, though, is the middle (non-bulleted) feature: "Collect Them All! (2 Assorted Styles)" Using the word "All" when referring to a group of two seems a bit overenthusiastic. Similarly, "assorted" seems a bit much to refer to two different toys. I wonder how many children have been motivated to collect them all?

There are two more remarkable things about this toy. First is the illustration in the lower right corner of the box:

I guess when you are going on a safari for summer fun, it's traditional to shoot a tiger and mount its head on the spare tire... which is located on the hood according to the main photo. The only tough part would be locating a tiger while on safari, since a safari takes place in Africa and tigers are found in India.

The part I like the best is when you take a close look at what's pulling the sailing vessel:

Yes, I believe that's supposed to be a Porsche 911, judging by the shape (and the subtle clue of the 911 on the hood). A fine, powerful sports car... though I don't think it does a very good job of towing 25' sailboats. At least that makes cornering less responsive, I'm sure.

When you go to create a new package, try to remember this one... and avoid looking like it.

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