New digital press, in-line priming unit extend capabilities of customers
UK printer Ultimate Digital has used its digital print expertise and unique Smartflow web-to-print system to deliver personalized KitKat packs linked to a social media campaign.
The promotion features across all KitKat packs, and from February 1 consumers have been entering online using the wrapper codes. Winners can upload photos and personalized ‘Break Messages’ to produce their own unique KitKat wrapper. The personalized KitKat four-finger milk packs are packed on production lines at the Nestlé factory in York and each is posted to the winners in a gift box.
Nestlé confectionery business unit head, KitKat and biscuits, Haseeb Rahman, commented: ‘This promotion taps in to the current trend for personalization, giving consumers the chance to win a personalized four-finger pack for themselves or to give to a friend or loved one. More than 56,000 unique personalized packs will be on offer in the prize promotion. The campaign has been backed with a one million GBP media budget across digital and social media.’
Gido Van Praag, vice president and general manager of the Graphics Solutions Business within HP Europe, said: ‘As marketers continue to look for ways to win at the shelf and truly connect with their audiences, we will see digital packaging continue to rise in popularity.’
The team at Ultimate Digital were involved from the initial project conception with its extensive knowledge of HP Indigo digital print technology. The company has also delivered several other aspects of this ambitious campaign, with its unique, bespoke web-to-print Smartflow system, originally developed to streamline the design-to-print process and rip millions of individual artworks to its digital presses, also having the capability to fully interact with front end consumer websites to deliver a complete online platform for digital web to print campaigns. Smartflow has been used in this way for this KIitKat project and it also provides complete supply chain control, traceability and individual product and detailed report analysis.
Chris Tonge, executive director at Ultimate Group, said: ‘It’s fantastic to be involved in such a high profile digital personalization project for such an iconic Nestlé brand. Now the first personalized packs are starting to arrive with customers, I am sure the social media campaign on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, etc will really start to gain momentum.’
Challenges have included supplying a digitally printed film that would pack really fast down a normal production line incorporating both a release lacquer and cold seal to replicate conventionally printed KitKat film. After a couple of trials this was achieved and the design is being digitally printed using 4-color process and white. ‘We can use either of our HP Indigo presses to achieve the Nestlé standard,’ added Tonge.
The personalized packs are printed in weekly batches of around 7-8,000 packs and each one has a unique barcode and identification code generated from Smartflow. The printed reels from Ultimate Digital are then delivered back to Nestlé for packing. Once packed the personalized packs are returned back to Ultimate Packaging for the individual packing and despatch process. Each pack is scanned with the unique image appearing on screen to check and the customer address label is generated by Smartflow, put into a gift box and collected by Royal Mail for delivery.
Stephanie Scales, brand manager, KitKat and biscuits at Nestlé, commented: ‘It has been really great working with the Ultimate Digital team. It was clear from the start that it is an expert in digital print and Smartflow, and its in-house packing and distribution capability has helped Nestlé deliver probably the most complicated campaign we have attempted. The up take by customers to personalise their packs and activity on social media has been excellent but now it should start to really happen.’