Manufacturers increasingly emphasize humanness in their packaging design by using typefaces that appear handwritten. Think of brands like Lindt with its Hello Chocolate bars, Rachel’s yoghurts or Urban Bakery cookies. A recent academic study examines how such humanization impacts consumer choice:
- products with a handwritten typeface on the packaging were purchased more frequently compared to products relying on machine-written typefaces
- 30% of all respondents actually purchased crisp-bread using a handwritten typeface on the packaging vs. only 6% buying the same crisp-bread but with a machine-written typeface
- consumers evaluated products using handwritten typefaces more favourable: handwritten fonts signal human presence leading to stronger emotional attachment to the product
- if consumers lack emotional attachment products that signal sensual pleasures benefit most from handwritten type-faces whereas machine-written fonts support a more functional positioning
Human-like designs and handwritten typefaces are an effective and easy-to-implement humanization strategy to impact shoppers’ behaviours. Especially new brands or brands that lack attachment can boost their emotional connection with consumers.
*Effects were tested for various consumer product categories (e.g., chocolate, crisp bread, soaps, milk), for different handwritten and machine-written typefaces and in different countries (EU and USA).
Source: Schroll, R., Schnurr, B., Grewal, D. (2018). Humanizing Products with Handwritten Typefaces. Journal of Consumer Research.