The Cold Hard Facts: Arctic Ease,
A Case Study in Design ROI

Chances are if you lead an active lifestyle you’re familiar with Arctic Ease wraps. Arctic Ease provides convenient reusable pain therapy on the go — allowing you to break free from ice therapy — providing hours of relief from pain and swelling. Turns out, the Arctic Ease brand was in need of some relief of its own. The brand was feeling the heat and at risk of being de-listed in a key national retailer due to poor performance as a result of weak on-shelf presence and limited marketing. In order to solidify this important distribution relationship, brand management realized it needed to implement three fundamental changes:

  1. Redesign the package label to improve on-shelf impact and communicate the product’s benefits;
  2. Drive consumer awareness and trial through a comprehensive consumer focused marketing program; and
  3. Develop sample-sized product to drive consumer trial.

Excited to create a new Arctic Ease label for both retail and sample, we approached the package design challenge like everything we tackle, with THE two key questions: ‘What is it?’ and ‘Why do I want it? While developing the new label we kept in mind:

  1. The container and branding were to remain unchanged;
  2. The container dimensions limit communication;
  3. Samples must communicate on-shelf imagery.


Key Design Improvements

The key design improvements of the new label include:

  1. Minimized logo to increase prominence of the brand name;
  2. Increased visual impact linked with wrapping iconography;
  3. Clear statement of identity;
  4. Product benefits succinctly communicated;
  5. Silhouette used to visualize areas of use;
  6. Improved on-shelf SKU differentiation;
  7. Sample pouch retained key branding elements to help with on-shelf recognition.


The package label redesign, in combination with a marketing campaign, resulted in a stark turnaround for the brand. In their largest national leading retailer, the Arctic Ease brand experienced significant growth last year — we’re talking a 45% increase in sales for Arctic Ease while the category fell by 1.6% in 2014. Year-to-date sales in 2015 have increased by 93%.


Listen to Peter Costello, President and COO, Gawi Healthcare share the Arctic Ease story by clicking here for Package Design Magazine’s Design ROI webinar.