Did you ever buy anything just because of the writing on the package?

Have you ever bought something purely because of what’s written on the package?

Today I saw this small, medical-looking box in a store’s confectionery section:

Did you ever buy something just because of the writing?

It’s a bar of chocolate! It was expensive and I already had a couple of bars in my basket. Even so, I bought it. Why? Because I wanted to take the writing home with me. I was also a little curious about the chocolate inside the package. If the writing is so innovative, the product will probably be good too.

The chocolate is good, although I prefer milk to dark chocolate. But the point is that I bought it entirely because of the writing. That’s one up for us writers. Here’s what it says:

Confectioner only remedy
Keep out of reach of chocoholics


active ingredient cocoa solids — 75%

For relief from the symptoms of wrinkles and crow’s feet.

Warning — May cause weight gain if used incorrectly.

Directions: Simply break off the desired dosage and consume. You should quickly be overcome by stress-relieving endorphins and no longer concerned in the slightest about your wrinkles.

Important: This packet is protected by a tamper-evident paper wrap. If seal has been broken suspect everyone. BOCHOX can be habit forming.

Store below 18° C.

NOT TO BE TAKEN seriously.

75% cocoa Swiss dark chocolate

It’s from Bloomsberry & Co, a New Zealand company that thinks chocolate. Their web site is a hoot too. Congratulations to Vanessa Kettelwell and all the Bloomsberrians for such awesome writing! And for the awful puns. 😉

About Sarah Maddox

Technical writer, author and blogger in Sydney

Posted on 6 February 2010, in technical writing and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 11 Comments.

  1. Clever take on the pharmaceutical packaging metaphor!

  2. I like the water brand “Another Bloody Water”, not just for the name but the self-deprecating writeup on the back of the bottle. Still in the drinks fridge, Nudie fruit drinks all have funny copy on them, which adds to the fun.

    The bochox range really demonstrates the ultimate in differentiation-by-packaging. It’s just chocolate, but with a clever packaging gimmick. Interesting to see products that rely entirely on the strength of the packet’s copywriting..!

    • Hallo Ben,
      Ooh yes, Nudie bottles are great! I haven’t seen “Another Bloody Water”. I’ll keep an eye out for them now.
      Cheers, Sarah

  3. Hello Sarah,
    I’ve subscribed to your blog by RSS and I read every post with great pleasure, thank you!

    I’ve noticed you like chocolate – it may the main reason of your unexpected buying, doesn’t it? :))

    I’ve started my own blog affected by your notes about blog writing 🙂 Currently there is the only post in russian at my blog page, however it is just the beginning – do not be hard on me ))

    • Hallo Katya

      Congratulations on starting your tech writing blog! I’m so glad that your “About” page is in English, because I can understand it. 🙂 Wish I could read Russian too. I’ve tweeted a link to your blog. I hope you get lots of visitors!

      What, me buying chocolate because I like it? Never! 😉 Ha ha, you got me there!

      Cheers, Sarah

  4. LOL! We must be twins separated at birth… I saw this picture, read the label, and said, “Oooo. It’s chocolate? I’d SO buy this.”

  5. Sure – My first Innocent Smoothie was bought because of the message printed on the bottom of the carton, something like: ‘You are strongly advised to open at the other end’. These messages vary, but always amuse. The product’s pretty good as well, even though some say the company sold out.

  6. yup, it is good (although I would say that, as, being member of the top secret international team of designers behind its creation I’d be slightly biased). Although I can’t give too much away I can tell you that there are some very exciting new things in the pipeline.

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