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Olfactory marketing, a marketing that has a nose

The fact of smelling seems so simple and so obvious that we sometimes tend to find it normal to be able to breathe in the scent of freshly mown garden grass, or that of a warm croissant in the morning.

As early as the 1990s, studies showed that the impact of perfume on consumer psychology was extremely powerful, which turned smell into a strategic business tool. The use of olfactory stimuli in a commercial context has therefore “almost” become commonplace today.

Indeed, in addition to its ability to recall memories and generate emotions, a perfume sells, federates, builds loyalty, which has naturally led to the creation of a new area of ​​marketing: "Scent Marketing" or “Olfactory Marketing”. But then the question arises around the perfume to choose…

So let's take a look at what consumers prefer in a quick olfactory world tour.

When asked about their olfactory preferences, the Vogue France teams answered last December: “Scents of clean laundry, sea air or sunny orange blossom…”.

If we make a more general list in France, here are other smells that we love: 1/ The smell of coffee, of course! "At home or at the bar downstairs, it's addictive, I feel like the whole world is waking up, I would like to make this moment last..." Nathalie tells us.

2/ The smell of wood fire in the fireplace. : “I'm going to leave Paris and come and settle here in Normandy, it's decided! exclaimed Isabelle in front of her husband's somewhat surprised eyes.

3/ The smell of baby's skin. “Every time I smell orange blossom, I flash back and see my teenagers 15 years ago. At that time, they smelled so good…” Eric tells us a bit nostalgic 😊

And if we wander around the world, what fragrances do we like? In NYC, the scent of vanilla was the most popular in a study ten years ago... Could this still be the case today? Not sure when you know that it is now the legendary colognes that are on the rise, while for men, sales of very musky perfumes have taken off by 15 million dollars in one year.

A zest of kumquat, fumes of smoked tea, a bouquet of peonies… The scents preferred in China are sweeter and more flowery than in the West. "China has a real culture of smells - close to flavours, moreover, says perfumer Jean-Claude Ellena. Long before being used in our creations, jasmine and osmanthus were used to flavour tea and alcohol, citrus fruits were born there. You also smell a lot of mint and spices." Without forgetting the strong symbolism of flowers: the gardenia pinned to the buttonhole in Shanghai in summer or the peony, synonymous with longevity.

In the Middle East, perfume is everywhere. It is deeply rooted in society, daily practices and customs: it is a real cultural element. Roses, oud wood, sage, mint and other gums… Oriental perfumes are always an invitation to travel.

How then, with such varied profiles and tastes, can we create an olfactory logo that will appeal to as many people as possible? As do the major players in luxury or sportswear present on all continents, it is necessary to create a strong identity and at the same time to speak to everyone. A successful olfactory atmosphere must perfectly express the spirit of a brand: a pleasant smell is not enough. This is the whole challenge of olfactory marketing: to create a unique perfume, perfectly revealing a personality and at the same time being universal and readable by all.

A nice journey in perspective…

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