How to Crush Your Holiday Sales Goals With Giftable Packaging

In Episode 134 of the Handmade CEO Podcast, we welcomed Branding and Packaging Design Specialist Kelley Kempel to the to show! In this conversation, we dove into the art of creating giftable packaging and how it can help you crush your holiday sales goals. Kelley is the founder of Hidden Path Creative, a graphic design studio that assists small businesses with logos, branding, and product packaging. She is a true branding specialist, and her journey into this fascinating world is a story worth hearing.

Kelley’s Journey to Becoming a Branding Expert

Kelley Kempel - Hidden Path Creative

Kelley had artistic inclinations from an early age, leading her to pursue a college degree in graphic design. However, it was during her time in college that she discovered her true passion: packaging design. The three-dimensional nature of packaging design, the ability to transform graphics into tangible, interactive objects, captivated her.

Her journey began in-house at a large retailer, where she helped build private brands and packaging. Eventually, she took this knowledge and founded her own design studio, where she helps small and medium-sized businesses create meaningful brands.

The Creative Process Behind Personal Branding

Hidden Path Creative Logo

Kelley shared that the key to branding her own business, Hidden Path Creative, was understanding who she was, what she offered, and the emotions she wanted to convey through her brand. Kelley shared a story about the inspiration behind her logo, which came from a “no camping” sign she encountered during a trip to Centennial, Wyoming. The sign’s shape and script inspired her, and she created a logo with a touch of the outdoors, making it both authentic to her personal life and versatile.

How Giftable Packaging Boosts Sales During the Holidays

How to Crush Your Holiday Sales Goals With Giftable Packaging

Kelley emphasized the significance of holiday packaging, as many customers purchase products to give as gifts leading up to the holidays. By modifying product packaging to convey a gift-ready appearance, you can prompt customers to consider your products for gifting. Simple additions like bows, to-from hang tags, or seasonal sleeve designs can create a sense of urgency and connect emotionally with customers. Packaging can serve as a powerful cue, influencing buying decisions and increasing sales.

Cost-Efficient Holiday Packaging

Kiana shared her own experience as an artist looking for cost-effective packaging solutions. Kelley offered practical advice on saving money on holiday packaging. She encourages businesses to work with existing packaging when possible, opting for simple additions like belly bands or ribbons. Comparing quotes from different suppliers is another money-saving strategy, as it can reveal better materials or techniques at a lower cost. Using the same packaging for multiple items can also reduce per-piece expenses. Kelley’s insights provide valuable guidance for businesses looking to optimize their packaging budgets.

Creating a Plan for Holiday Packaging

Creating a plan for holiday packaging

To wrap up the conversation, Kiana discussed the importance of planning for holiday packaging. Kelley introduces her Packaging Field Guide system, designed to help businesses develop a packaging strategy, identify their needs, and find suitable suppliers. The system comprises six modules that guide users through the process, ensuring that every aspect of their packaging aligns with their brand and holiday goals. Kelley generously offers a discount code for her Packaging Field Guide (HANDMADECEO15), helping businesses get a head start on their holiday preparations.

How to Crush Your Holiday Sales Goals With Giftable Packaging - Packaging Field Guide - Hidden Path Creative - Kelley Kempel

Kelley’s Top Three Business Book Recommendations

Before concluding, Kiana asks Kelley for her top three business book recommendations. Kelley’s choices provide unique insights into branding and marketing:

“The Naming Book” by Brad Flowers: This book provides a step-by-step guide on naming your business or products, using a process similar to Kelley’s own naming approach.

“Obsessed” by the founder of Red Antler Agency: This book explores creating branding that customers become obsessed with, offering valuable insights into brand building.

“Cultish” by Amanda Montel: This book delves into the language used by cults and its similarity to marketing language, shedding light on the power of language in building a loyal brand following.


Kelley’s expertise in branding and packaging shines through this conversation. Her journey, insights, and practical tips offer a valuable resource for businesses seeking to optimize their packaging strategies for the holiday season. As we approach the holidays each year, Kelley’s wisdom reminds us that thoughtful packaging can make a significant difference in sales and customer engagement.

Grab The Brand Strategy Workbook for Makers

Brand Strategy for Makers

We are so excited to present our makers with our Brand Strategy for Makers – an all-in-one workbook that will help you determine your brand and brand values – the very heart of your business! This workbook was made in collaboration with Kelley.

With this workbook, you’ll be able to:

✨Learn the basics of branding your business.

✨Determine your brand values.

✨Determine your ideal customer.

✨Write your brand statement.

✨Write your brand story.

All of these steps will help you get clear on the brand strategy for your business!