Does anyone actually give a shit if a product changes its packaging graphics?

Every now and then some big brand name will decide that the look of its packaging has gotten old and boring so they decide to spice things up with a redesign. That much I can understand, but what I don’t understand is why they think a change in the look of their packaging is in any way a selling point for their product?

Note, I’m not talking about a new container design such as a no-drip bottle or easy-pour spout or what have you, just a change in the graphics on the package. Take, for example, the folks who make Barilla whole grain spaghetti. They’re about to unleash a new look for the box and they just can’t help but tell you about it:

Pic of Barilla spaghetti package.

Click to embiggen.

Along the right hand side of the box you’ll see that they’re advertising what the box is going to look like in the near future. What’s worse is the fact that, as pointed out by the folks at Slate.com, they had to redesign the current package just to tout the upcoming redesign. According to the back of the box “nothing else has changed” about the product.

I realize I’ve got an above average IQ, but I just don’t understand why I should care. OK, I can maybe see a reason in the idea that some idiots may get confused by the new package and be unable to determine that the product is right there in front of them, but you can do that without selling it as being some great new feature of your product. I don’t buy spaghetti based on how pretty the box it comes in happens to be.

I had the same reaction when Coca-Cola announced that they had new plastic bottles that were similar in shape to the old glass bottles. (They recently made the same change to their 2-liter bottles.) I didn’t care if the bottle was shaped like the old glass ones. It wasn’t a major factor in my purchasing decision. Now, had they brought back glass bottles then I’d have been much more interested. I’ve always thought the product tasted better in glass bottles.

Knowing my track record I’m probably in the minority on this topic similar to how I’m in the minority about those stupid kindergarten-like motivational posters some companies like to plaster all over their workplaces. I find them insulting to my intelligence, but I’m told they actually work which is why employers use them. I’m probably too cynical for it to work on me.