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Sensory Branding

Scent Marketing Success: Step 1 Of 10

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Scent Marketing Success: Step 1 Of 10

1) Understand the potential of scent

The sense of smell is the strongest of all human senses. It reminds us of experiences – good and bad – we may have had decades ago. Scent travels straight to the limbic system in our brain – which is responsible for memory and emotion.

For marketing purposes, scents have proven to work well in two areas:

•    The Cognitive, in which they make us recognize a product and trigger a desire or memory that may end up in a decision or a purchase. The ideal application is to stop a passer-by by projecting that product’s scent into her path. Consumer research shows that once a scent is dispersed, related products are perceived of higher quality and value. For instance a scented toilet paper was perceived softer than the identical, unscented version.

•    The Emotional, in which scents make us feel comfortable, “at home”, influencing our perception of the passing of time (slower in a scented environment as proven in Las Vegas casinos) and space (a scented room is perceived larger than an unscented room). Scent can generate an environment where we like to stay longer and consume more.

The key potential of scent marketing for a brand is the lasting association of a scent with a certain event or environment. Evoking a positive sensory experience with your brand can give your product or service an edge in a sea of consumer choices.

Contributed to Branding Strategy Insider by: Harald Vogt

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2 Comments

Dave Saunders on August 05th, 2008 said

With the barrage of marketing and branding messages, scent does seem like the final frontier. I was looking through some fashion magazines recently and as I picked one up, I could already smell the mingle of odors trying to catch my attention. With about a dozen smell-swatches leafed in the ads, I’m not sure how anyone would have the nose to tell them apart but it does seem many are jostling for position.

Harald Vogt on August 05th, 2008 said

Dave,
you have of course encountered the most traditional application of scent marketing — marketing for fine fragrances. And, they would not smell just by themselves if the magazine would not have been “used” before. Manufacturers take great care in producing ScentStrips(R) to not get banned from magazines due to early release of their fragrances. The fact that in your case all strips seem to have been opened makes the case for their raison d’etre.
Harald

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