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Monthly Archives: October 2015

Investors in People Assessment In The Bag

Blog post by Nikita Briggs, Digital Marketing Apprentice

Duo have successfully passed their Investors in People assessment! Before joining Duo I was unaware of what Investors in People was, but after learning about the principles and seeing how Duo have accomplished this, I now understand value the benefits this accreditation brings to a business and its employees.

I started here at Duo in August 2014. This was a summer placement and I gained work experience in each of the Office Departments. Once my summer placement had ended in September I returned to college. At this point in time I was a little unsure whether I wanted to go to university but knew I wanted to work in marketing. Zoe Brimelow the Brand Director sat with me and discussed the different routes and options I could go down and one was to do a marketing apprenticeship. I loved the idea of this and I was given the fantastic opportunity of being an apprentice here at Duo. Zoe had guided me to the first step of my future which I was very grateful for and I feel my career path is starting to build the way that I need. I have regular training and also attending The Juice Academy where I learn about Social Media and Digital Marketing. Marketing as a whole really interested me and I loved the concept that it is constantly changing.

As an Investor in People Duo has a strong focus on employee training and development. This is a great benefit to my career journey because I have the opportunity to constantly improving my performance and in turn help the business achieve its goals. Earlier this year Duo launched their new Key Performance Indicators and all employees were asked to contribute their ideas about how Duo can achieve the KPI's. I took part and I found this was a great task for me as I had just started in the business and I was learning lots of key things about marketing particularly in Duo. Each department brainstormed what we thought could improve Duo and help achieve the KPI's. Then each department had their own objectives and all of these together created the business plan. This gave me a good understanding of how the business runs as we knew these would help us achieve the ending results. By setting objectives and the four Key Performance Indicators together we will get the results that we need to succeed.

Duo have an employee Performance Development Review System which I feel is a great idea to give the manager and employee to talk and listen to how the employee wanted to develop their skills. The PDS has links to the Key Performance Indicators and also the brand values. All the team had training on how to get the most out of their PDS and how to complete this. This helped me because it made me think about what I wanted to achieve and the skills I wanted to develop in the next 12months.

Working with a company who is an Investor in People is a benefits to you as a customer because it shows they are focussed on future improvements offering you stability and confidence. Duo has many long term customer relationships and always looks for customers' feedback about how we can improve our products and services to add value to their businesses.  

During my time at Duo I have gained a lot of confidence in myself. I've learnt so many things and I am very grateful to all of Duo for the support and efforts so far in my career. If you asked me 2 years ago where would I be? I wouldn't believe or have the confidence to be where I am now. And that's all because of Duo being an Investor in People! They helped me believe in myself.  

Make your packaging all part of the selling point

As featured in Retail Packaging

Claudio Lugli

Zoe Brimelow, Brand Director at Duo UK, explains how…

The four key elements of retail packaging design used to be:

1. It must be seen

2. It must be engaging

3. It must communicate a message

4. It must sell.

However, with e-commerce named as the fastest growing retail market in Europe, consideration must also be product protection and customer convenience which is specifically relevant for online retail packaging.

Here at Duo UK, we've seen a significant shift in attitude to packaging over the past couple of years. Mail order companies used to see packaging as nothing more than protection and opted for the lightest, most robust material that was functional and fast to pack outbound goods into. Design, aesthetics, customer convenience and usability were usually a secondary concern.

However, design enhancements such as carry handles, twin glue lines and engaging branding that captures the attention of passersby, as well as the shopper, has transformed the mailing bag.  The mailing bags has transitioned from a practical item to a marketing tool that can increase brand awareness as well as improve the customers shopping experience and increase likelihood of a repeat sale and recommendation.


Navid Salimian, Marketing Manager at luxury Italian clothing brand Claudio Lugli agrees the design of the packaging is critical to the success

Absolute attention to detail is essential of e-commerce brands. Navid said: "When we were preparing our online store launch, packaging was high on our priority list - we were looking for packaging that reflected the luxury and heritage of our high-end Italian tailored products. Our customers are buying luxury garments and we want them to feel excited by our packaging - it creates a first impression that lasts a long time and reaffirms the brand ethos and values. Our products are renowned for their loud prints and we're not shy about making a statement, but for that reason our packaging design is very minimalist, sleek, and professional. This way, the product does the talking and the excitement builds as the customer opens the package to find their purchase."

Mailing bag designs have become more elaborate as retailers capitalise on the increased visibility these bags get outside of the home through the rise of click and collect services. From new product launches to seasonal trends reflected in the colour of the bags, packaging items are now embraced by marketing teams to promote the brand and key marketing messages.

Marketeers and designers are so tuned-in to the clout social media has with certain audiences, packaging designs are now frequently seeing the inclusion of social media icons to encourage customers to engage with the brand online.


Get your packaging pitch right for e-commerce.

Sales success is about first impressions and reflecting a brand's ethos in the way it wraps its products - a luxury brand for example, may require elaborate luxurious packaging materials so the opulent customer experience begins from the minute they collect and touch their parcel or leave a store with their newly purchased products.

We carried out a study that showed a clear link between how luxury items are packaged and repeat purchases. The study found that 61% of men and 63% of women felt that receiving a professionally gift-wrapped product made the item 'extra special'. Among 18-24 year olds this figure rose to 72%. Consumers also associated a number of positive halo effects with gift-wrapped purchases including:

  • An increased propensity to repeat order (35%)
  • An improved perception of value for money (25%)
  • Improved brand image (25%)
  • More likely to recommend to a brand to a friend (20%)
  • A belief that a brand invests more in customer service (20%)

In the same vein, for the growing number of eco-conscious customer (a report by Perception Research Services showed that 65% of UK consumers welcome environmentally friendly packaging), brands are keen to operate in a more sustainable way and promote their environmental credentials. Responsible retail giant, and Duo UK client, JD Williams, are always looking for ways to conduct business in a more socially responsible way and have incorporate this commitment to sustainability in their packaging design by communicating to the consumer how to recycle or reuse the product. This sort of direct call to action is an effective way to engage with consumers on a subject they're passionate about.


Advancements in packaging materials, and in particular in polythene make it possible to use a 100% sustainable packaging material that is also carbon negative (GreenPE), and we've found many brands want to share this commitment to the environment in the design of their packaging. In the competitive retail environment, brands that connect with their audience through shared beliefs and values plus offer a customer centric purchasing journey can benefit from an increase opportunity for repeat sales.

Download the full article here

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