News 08/10/2021

Echo Brand Design: Featured on Transform Magazine

Echo redesigns new Smarties range with 100% plastic-free materials

Brand and design agency, Echo, worked with confectionary brand, Smarties, to redesign a range of ‘Topper toys’ with a 100% plastic free materials. The Toppers toys offer travel sized games for families to play with whilst on holiday.

Smarties’ plastic free commitments helped broaden Echo’s creative process to think outside the box while maintaining the playfulness of the brand and making it a learning experience for kids.

“Following the launch of Smarties music creator in 2020, a physical and digitally interactive toy that enables children to create their own tunes, Smarties came to us with the ambition to extend and relaunch their range of toppers for children with their ‘plastics free commitments front of mind,” says Pete Cowie, account director at Echo.

The final toys offer two sets of card games and wooden story dice which tap into the ‘thinker, dreamer, creator’ archetypes. The products launch alongside a number of downloadable learning resources developed to offer children an interactive and personalised brand experience and the opportunity to ‘learn through play.’

The ‘learn through play’ concept sees physical brand packaging converge with online play. Echo extended the range to create products that encourage developmental and constructive play. This includes positive reward systems that aim to resolve the tensions between ‘learning’ and ‘treating.’ Echo worked with child development expert, Sian Williams, to create these.  

“Our three types of play (thinker, creator and dreamer) are really engaging and fun ways for children to learn, so we wanted to ensure they remained at the heart of the new toys we created. We also wanted to use this opportunity to introduce new characters to the Smarties worlds, and in doing so have produced four new exciting worlds for children to explore,” says Susie Whittaker, senior designer at Echo.

“Kids can create colourful stories with our Story Dice, have fun with the family and friends using our Travel Cards, and of course enjoy our delicious, colourful Smarties too,” adds Tamara Spada, marketing manager at Smarties.

Echo further enhanced the sustainability credentials of the toys by removing printed instructions and game boards, which can now be accessed online. The sustainably made toys are a further extension of Nestlé’s commitment that all packaging will be recyclable or reusable by 2025. Earlier this year, Smarties packaging transitioned to 100% recyclable paper, being the first global confectionery brand to do so. 

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