WD-40 introduces a new flexible straw
For the introduction of the new EZ Reach product, WD-40 partnered with San Diego-based branding agency COE Design to develop the new point of purchase display for the automotive market. COE Design designed the display to complement the existing product line. The client wanted a full service solution including the design, manufacturing and shipping to the retail distributer locations.
The EZ Reach was initially targeted to the automotive market because of the many hard to reach areas under the hood. This flexible straw allows the consumer to reach in places without taking the engine apart, saving time and money in the long run. Other industries that benefit from this product are construction, boating, sports and recreation as well as home and garden use. This multi-use product lubricates, drives out moisture, removes residue and protects surfaces from corrosion on a wide variety of products ranging from engines to household items.
The project began with researching the existing marketplace to see retail environments and what displays were currently used by the stores. This confirmed there was very little counter-space to spare. We decided creating a footprint small enough to secure the product and highlight the marketing message would better ensure use in the stores.
“We also want the display to be interactive for the consumer so they can see how the flex straw works. Die-cutting holes into the display allows the consumer to play with the straw, remarks Laura Coe Wright, being able to flex the straw and fit it into a hole shows how easy it would be to reach hard to get places.” Designed as a 7”W x 5”D x 11”H two-piece POP structure, the product is easily showcased and secured to the base to prevent theft. This design allows room to flex the straw making it possible to insert it into one of the many holes in the display.
With a quantity of 3,000-13,000 displays quoted, several prototypes were made of various materials to test strength, function and weight while confirming unit price. In the end the best fit will depend on the quantity produced. A larger quantity would benefit from an injection molded display while smaller runs are perfect for the original design materials of a molded base with an aluminum header that slides into place.
Being flexible in the design can save a client a lot of money in the long run. A vendor pointed out that if we reduced the height of the original backer an inch, it fit inside a smaller shipper providing better pricing and a better fit on the palettes. “I like to know my options and it helps to have good vendors. Having a knowledge of the manufacturing process can help your design.” says Coe. Tiny tweaks to rework the direction without sacrificing the original design is easier if you understand the fabrication process. Also, it is always a good idea to have extra lead time built into a production schedule, as it can save you in the long run when changes need to happen.
COE Design is a multi-discipline design firm that specializes in the strategy of blending branding, packaging design and retail merchandising materials into a cohesive brand presence. Our designs produce innovative solutions while reducing material usage and costs.
COE Design is passionate about creating smart solutions that help protect the planet.
Featuring an attached 8” flexible straw that bends and keeps its shape, you can test the flex straw out before purchase.