KENYA – Tetra Pak stole the show in the just concluded Lewa Safari Marathon not for track performance but for its eco-friendly carton water bottles that runners relied on for rehydration.

The Lewa Wildlife Conservancy in northern Kenya is home to the annual Lewa Safari Marathon organized by Tusk and Lewa in Safaricom.

The internationally acclaimed event runs through one of Africa’s most spectacular wildlife conservancies and a World Heritage Site.

The marathon opted for Tetra Pak’s carton water to comply with a 2019 government ban on the use of plastics in national parks and forests

The carton bottles offer an eco-friendly alternative as they are made mainly out of renewable resources and come with a cap and top made from sugar cane, offering low CO2 emissions.

At the recent Connected Packaging Summit 2022, Sharon Kawinzi, Operational Marketing Manager at Tetra Pak Eastern Africa said: “This is a marathon that’s considered a ‘must do’ for runners across a range of abilities from children to elite runners.

“We had a full story on sustainability to watch and engage, as well as hydration point information and fun activities too. It was received very positively.”

Connected experience through packaging

In addition to its recyclability, the bottle has a “360-degree billboard effect” with endless printing design possibilities to create brand and product awareness.

 The organizers in collaboration with Appetite Creative took advantage of this infinite printing possibility to create bespoke connected experience accessible via QR codes.

Hosted on the Tetra Pak web-based app, the content was used to drive awareness of the marathon, give the runners route details, and share information about Lewa’s wildlife.

The connected experience also communicated the advancements and actions that Tetra Pak is taking to ensure the sustainable production of its products in African communities.

Widely used by thousands of marathon participants, volunteers and spectators, the connected experience had an above average engagement time of 2min 39sec.

It once again reinforced the idea that connected packaging campaigns are more impactive and cost-effective than digital advertising campaigns.

According to Appetite Creative, branded content in packaging campaigns generates a scan rate/click-through rate (CTR) of 14% which is significantly greater than a digital advertising campaign which is usually around 0.01% CTR.

Additionally, connected packaging campaigns are also cost-effective as a ‘click’ or scan on packaging is technically ‘free’ compared to £1.50 (US$1.76) per click in digital advertising, giving brands a compelling reason.

“With an ever-growing need for brands to act responsibly when it comes to environmental and cultural policies, connected packaging and the wider technology supporting it provides a smart solution,” said Jenny Stanley, MD at Appetite Creative.

“It offers an efficient and cost-effective way to collect data, develop products and communicate directly with customers in real-time, as well as a simple way to improve a variety of business credentials.”

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