At EPC, we believe in the positive impact the sense of smell can bring into people’s life. One of the areas we specialise in is scent marketing. We work with brands to create sensory experiences and long lasting memories that enhance people’s experience with a product or a space. But how can smell have such strong power?
In this blog, we are exploring what is olfactory marketing and a few of the projects we’ve worked on.
Did you know that smell is one of the most powerful senses of them all? It triggers memory in an instant before sight, sound or touch. It can affect your mood and your emotions. This is why we’re big believers in embracing scent to enhance your experiences, whether it be at home or in a creative space.
What’s sensory marketing about?
INCORPORATING THE SENSES
Marketing, it can be a minefield at the best of times! Whilst still a powerful tool, the world appears to be moving away from traditional print and TV ads as a way to reach people. In the new digital era, we’re now awash with ways to connect our brands to a mass number of people through countless social media and digital platforms. Everything is at our fingertips.
More and more we’re being encouraged to engage with our screens, but with so much visual stimulation have we reached a point where we’re starting to ignore these visual cues? Do we want new and unique sensory experiences instead?
Here at the lab we’re engaged with a large community of people seeking experiences. They’re wanting face to face interactions, to learn something new, to walk away with an enhanced experience and a new memory. Experiences offer people a break away from the modern world and a chance to reconnect with their environment.
Fragrance creation workshops are the backbone of what we do, and people love it! Is it because we’ve created a fragranced space, a space for people to smell, to spend time with like minded individuals and to create something unique? It’s most likely a combination! But we can definitely attest to the power of scent to enhance an experience.
Brands & Scent
As bricks and mortar sales fall, some brands are turning to scent to bring back their customers in an effort to create a multi-sesnsory experience. An increasing number of brands are using scent marketing to leave a deeper mark within their users’ conscious. Luxury hotels, fashion and food brands are increasingly using scents as a tool to perfume their space rather than creating a fragrance product to the end consumer.
Smell subconsciously impacts your perceptions more than any other sense. It is believed to be the most primitive of all our senses and therefore one of our strongest senses in terms of how we behave. Harnessing scent can create a deeper connection with people, add a higher level of pleasure, evoke feelings and memories and a more positive brand association. Combine 2 or more senses and they boost one another!
To learn more about the power of the sense of smell, read our other post >> How can fragrance make you fall in love
Designing multi-sensory experiences: our latest installations
The Aroma Lab at Harrods
The team at Glenfiddich came to us to develop a series of aromas that would accurately represent the tastes from their different whiskies. These aromas would then form an experience known as the ‘Aroma Lab’ in the new fine wine and spirit room at Harrods.
Our perfumer Emmanuelle Moeglin and Glenfiddich’s master nose Brian Kinsman, worked alongside the agency Purple PR to develop six aromas that would let you to delve into the world of whisky, nose first. Chose your favourite three following a guided path, and you’d be pointed towards your ideal whisky type! Clever. The different notes created for the whisky brands span across the smell of cut grass and late summer hay or the smell of fresh fruits from orchards to dried wintery fruits.
Scent and Taste
While two separate senses with different triggering systems, smell and taste are deeply intertwined. Taste often starts with smell, which can even trigger hunger. Both senses use a similar receptor mechanism that triggers a response when molecules are in contact of those receptors. But volatile molecules are also detected by our nose when going through our mouth!
By creating a multi-sensory space that connects sense and taste, individuals are more likely to remember their experience and develop stronger feelings towards the space and brand involved (hopefully in a positive way!)
Words from Emmanuelle
“Through partnering with Glenfiddich and the experimental combination of our expertise in scent and whisky, we have been able to design a beautiful multi-sensory experience that unlocks new ways for whisky to be discovered.”
Scenting a Private Space In An Old Printing Factory
‘The Ministry‘ is one of the latest projects from the Ministry of Sound, a shared workspace and private members club, located in Elephant & Castle in an old disused book factory. Simon Moore from We Are Baby agency and Emmanuelle Moeglin combined forces to create a scent for the space. “The space isn’t about getting people to work harder, but instead to ignite ‘human creativity.” – Gledstone
Our brief was to create a scent that bought the history of the building back to life but in a modern day setting. The space has kept a lot of its original features, with the walls and floors stripped back to their former days, to help maintain a rough industrial feel. It being a former victorian printing factory was a key inspiration when formulating the fragrance. The scent needed to evoke the memory of ink, paper and turning pages in an old book.
Aptly named ‘Livre’ (meaning ‘book’ in French) the fragrance carries intense notes of leather, wood and patchouli together with a softer sweet side from frankincense and vanilla.
Scent and Memories
The sense of smell is very unique because it is the only sense that connects to the limbic system, which lies within the brain. It’s a set of structures that deals with memories and emotions. This is why smell can take you back to a particular time and place in an instant, quicker than any of the other senses. The ability to recognise a smell and link it to a memory is 65% compared to 50% with vision.
Words from Emmanuelle
“I absolutely loved working on this project and am so proud it’s scenting an iconic landmark in south London!”
Squire & Partners
A Scented Dreamscape at The Design Junction
This year we took the lab and our new fragrance collection, LAYERS\, to The Design Junction Festival.
As part of the festival, Brixton based architects Squire & Partners designed a multi-sensory environment where people could design, discover and create in one space. Acoustics were developed by sound architect Tom Middleton and designer Tim Gledstone. The space was scented by us!
The fabric walls were scented with a bespoke blend from LAYERS\01 to elevate and complete the sensory experience. We utilised the mellow Base Layer Sandalwood/Musk blended with the vibrant the top Layer Bergamot/ Incense, to form an evolving scent that complimented the changing colours, sounds and ultimately mood within the space.
Scent and Mood
With the strong link between scent, memory and emotions, it’s no wonder that smell affects our mood. Experience something positive in the past, and the associated scent will be perceived as positive when smelt again in the future. Aromatherapists strongly believe in using natural scents to relax and stimulate individuals; for example citrus scents increase the production of serotonin which is the happy hormone, rosemary, mint, eucalyptus increase blood flow and boost our energy and jasmine activates the opiod systems in the brain which promotes pleasure.
Incorporating multi-sensory layers such as sound and fragrance, into experiences and workplaces, evokes emotion, stimulates memory and is great for creativity. In fact smell impacts on 75% of our emotions and can increase creative problem solving, proving just how powerful it really is!
Words from Emmanuelle
“Squire and Partners Dreamscape was one of the most relaxed spaces we’ve had the chance to scent. It’s incredible how using multiple senses through the design of a space can dramatically improve its perception. A space is no longer functional but “augmented”.”
And to finish, we think this little video will wrap up why we’re so fond of our noses.