Sunday, August 22, 2010

Orbital Awesomeness

BzzAgent (a word-of-mouth marketing company) recently sent me a few samples of Orbit gum to test out and share with my friends, on occasion of the brand’s recent packaging redesign. The first goal was unnecessary, as I am an Orbit addict, probably to the tune of half a pack a day (eaten a half-piece at a time…does anyone else do that?) The second goal I attempted to meet by leaving three packs and a note (Want a piece of gum?) in my office breakroom. Unfortunately, my failure to emphasize the word piece resulted in the packs being snatched up whole, leaving me feeling like a poor product ambassador. So I’m writing a blog post to assuage my guilt, and show my BzzAgent handlers that I didn’t fail the mission entirely.

According to Orbit’s website, the company currently offers 12 flavors of its flagship brand (not including the more recent Orbit White and Orbit Mist extensions). Wikipedia, however, lists 27 flavors, which is more in-line with my observations at the store. Orbit has come to dominate the gum aisle, with new flavors coming out at surprisingly rapid pace (Watermelon Spring and Pina Colada being new of the newer ones). I used to experiment with these interesting new flavors, but quickly realized that I am a gum purist. I like three flavors: Spearmint, Sweetmint, and Peppermint. That’s it. Not even Wintermint, whose flavor always tastes strangely clinical to me (from any brand, not just Orbit). I buy those three flavors in 3-packs from Target, where the cost is as cheap as 50 cents per individual pack (when on sale).

As someone who fancies himself a bit of a design geek, I do like the new packaging. The plastic wrapper is no longer clear, but is printed with all the nutrition facts and miscellaneous information that used to be on the box. The cardboard wrapper itself is now printed with a spiffy spot varnish in 36 different simple, graphic designs. Branding is minimal, with only the full logo on the front and the “O” on the reverse.
The only drawback to this redesign is that it’s only evident to someone who has purchased and opened the package, not a customer browsing at the store.

All in all, a nice refresh for a product I probably use more than any other. Check it out!
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