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The olfactory experiences: how a smell provides you a personality

The creation of olfactory experiences is one of the most innovative marketing tools and one of the most important trends in neuromarketing. Consists of using fragrances in establishments in order to create different emotions and influence the visitors’ behaviour.

Benefits of olfactory experiences

Among its several benefits, we know that they increase the feeling of well-being and the memory and ensures a good shopping experience and a longer remaining time. Therefore, we find more and more establishments from all sectors, such as retail, hospitality, healthcare, restoration, etc. that use scent marketing to provide an added value to their customers and, of course, a plus of differentiation from their competitors.

“We are able to distinguish up to 10,000 different odours, while for example, we are only able to distinguish 200 colours.” (Díez López, 2013)

Thus, if a company is able to create pleasant olfactory experiences and be congruent with their target audience, customers will remain longer and will identify the brand with this scent, so at the end, they will end up becoming its fan.

How are these experiences created?

To create good olfactory experiences we must first define the objectives and focus the campaign in the right way. We should know what we want to do: increase impulse sales, make the customer feel relaxed, improve concentration, create familiarity, etc. Each fragrance transmits one or several values and we have to choose the ideal one in each case.

On the other hand, it’s true that exist general fragrances that comprehend all these needs, but we do not always have the same goal. For example, if we are in a leisure place such as a cinema or in a fast sale place such as a service station, we are going to be more interested in impulse sales, so we will use fragrances that help to promote sales (jelly beans, chocolates, pastries, …). Contrarily, if we are in a retirement home we will prioritise values such as familiarity, trust and well-being in general.

Many times, a gourmet experience can turn into a bad experience if there is a “bad smell” in the toilets of the establishment or if there is an invasive fragrance that devours the other flavours. In the same way, if you are in a hotel and the fragrance chosen reminds you of a bad moment in your life, that will turn the experience into a bad one. For these reasons, we must take a lot of care in the selection of the fragrances because the olfactory experiences remain in our clients for a long time.

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