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MFG.com's Packaging Marketplace - Q&A w Packaging Diva, Joann Hines

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JoAnn Hines is CEO at PackagingDiva.com & founder of PackagingUniversity.com providing consulting services for the packaging industry. In 35 years, JoAnn has tracked packaging trends, and innovative new packaging technologies. She is an expert witness, provocateur and spokesperson on consumer product packaging, branding, merchandising, retail and patent infringement. Ms. Hines is speaker, author, expert on global packaging and a frequent media guest. Ms. Hines is the top social media packaging expert. She recently built an extensive packaging platform and recently launched disruptive packaging technology at MFG.com.

She recently joined me for a short chat.

MFGSourcing:  Joann, thanks for joining me today.  With over 30 years in the packaging industry you have really seen it all.  What is it about packaging that still gets you so excited?

Packaging Diva: Packaging is integral to our modern lifestyle. There are so many packaging innovations that people just take for granted.  Many have just taken place within the last 20 years but packages like the beer can, TV dinners, and microwavable packaging revolutionized food and beverage when they were invented. Now a day doesn't go by when you don't use multiple forms of packaging in your life. Packaging innovation is the key to making it easier to shop, buy and consume products while keeping it safe and secure. Seeing an industry grow through technology and innovation keeps me excited.

MFGSourcing: What prompted you to get involved with MFG.com to build a packaging marketplace?

Packaging Diva: From the buyer's perspective: The number one question I am asked is how to find a good or qualified packaging supplier. You can literally spend thousands of hours searching for the right packaging resource. The simple fact is most people don't even know where to begin because the industry is so huge and complex.  That's where mfg.com/packaging comes in to play. It simplifies sourcing for any packaging component. It's a one stop shop.  That's why I'm so excited instead of spending hours you can spend minutes finding the right packaging resource.

From the supplier's perspective: I get thousands of request a month of companies looking for new business. The old sales paradigm no longer works. You want clients to come to you when they are ready to do business not spend countless unproductive hours making sales calls that result in little or nothing in the way of new business. Now all that has changed because clients will come directly to you though the mfg.cpm/packaging platform. You will be seen when a buyer is ready to order, not spinning your wheels making endless sales calls with no results.

MFGSourcing: Why is the packaging industry, as a general rule, fragmented?

Packaging Diva: All packaging is broken down by its primary base material. This is the way all manufacturing is categorized. Each primary packaging material has its own manufacturers, associations, publications, even trade shows and conferences. Each group proclaiming theirs is the material of choice. It's literally a materials war in the packaging business to win over the hearts and mind of consumer with the best and most ecologically responsible packaging. To complicate matters further regulatory agencies both domestic and international setting mandates and guidelines regulating the packaging industry many times pitting one material against another.

MFGSourcing: What are some efficiencies a packaging marketplace can bring to the packaging industry?

Packaging Diva: Finding all the resources in one place simplifies sourcing. The beauty with MFG.com/packaging platform is that all the work is done for you. Its as easy as filling in the blanks, attaching specifications and drawings. The templates guide you to the important questions you should answer to get a qualified and successful packaging bid, delivered on time, cost effective and to your exact specifications. Think of the time and money it saves you not having to agonize over suppliers, delivery and quality because MFG.com/packaging pre-screens and qualifies vendors for you.

MFGSourcing: What do you forecast for the packaging industry over the next 5 years?

Packaging Diva: Packaging as a business is growing. No matter what the economy we still consume things. 70 % of all packaging is food related.  You may not eat steak but you still eat and many segments of packaging are growing: green packaging, convenience and intelligent packaging are rapidly growing in the industry. New packaging categories such as trace and trace and mobile marketing are in their infancy. As emerging economies grow they want things too. In order to have "things" you have to have packaging. I'll close with one of my favorite sayings "you can't have products without a package."

Packaging is what makes the world go round.

MFGSourcing: Thanks so much for joining me today!  If anyone is interested in seeing what the MFG.com Packaging Marketplace can do for your company, please click here.

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