Our sense of smell is very tightly linked to the emotional centre of the brain (the limbic lobe) and is the area that is also linked to our memories and creativity. It is one of the most powerful senses as it can transport us somewhere else in an instant. A smell can make you hungry, can revolt you, can play its part in you falling in love and can remind us of a special event or moment that means something to us. It is no surprise therefore that smell can make you more likely to buy a product or service.
Fragrances are being used in scent marketing alongside business logos, music and other marketing methods to create a complete brand profile that customers will recognise from a variety of different senses.
As well as adding to the view of the brand scents can encourage you to buy items and also increases the amount of time that people spend in a building. A study noted that people visiting a Las Vegas casino stayed 45% longer in an area that was scented compared to an area that contained none.All of the impacts that smell has on our buying habits is subversive, meaning that you don’t always know that it is happening. Children in particular are influenced by the sense of smell. It is thought that they are up to 350% more responsive to their sense than us adults are. This is where marketing to children plays a massive part in the creation of new toys and products specifically designed to them. You will often find that a product that may naturally smell quite plasticky has a fragrance added to it to make it more appealing. It is also why a lot of children’s products on the market at the moment are fragranced – Cupcake Surprise dolls are a perfect example of this. As well as being produced in a variety of pleasing colours and the overall concept of being able to covert your doll into a cupcake they are scented with some incredible smells including chocolate, lemon and strawberry.
So what smells make you happy? Do you have a favourite perfume that you buy time and time again? If you think about an important person in your life can you recall the smells that you associate with them?
Smell and the emotions it evokes in us are incredibly powerful and incredibly important.