Personal perfumes, scent marketing and the first lie in history
Sensory marketing is becoming increasingly popular among companies, I myself as a perfumer now have a few companies as clients for custom scents and I can see that number increasing in the near future to even more. Having a custom scent, representing your brand, just like you would have a logo or a slogan is something that sends a message about your brand to a customer, it adds value to a product and makes the brand memorable to the customer.
BUT, this is not what I want to write about today... not exactly.
I have written and spoken many times about how scents get in to our heads and molded into our synapses and there are some, we remember our whole lives, others that are associated with our experiences, stories and times of our lives.
What I do want to write about is scent marketing, personal brand, style and image of us, as individuals and how our perfume factors into it.
Like it or not, the way we smell is, albeit unconsciously, one of the most important things when we are dealing with others. Smell is universally one of the primary ways of communication, among a species and between species and even we as humans are programmed to respond to olfactory stimuli and messages. That's the reason we started perfuming ourselves in the first place - to mask our true scents and decide what we will be broadcasting to our surroundings. Perfuming or masking of scent in it's most ancient, primitive forms (like rubbing the skin with crushed leaves or petals) maybe one of the first lies in the history of humanity.
And so I am asking you: Do you really choose a perfume deciding based on what signals do you want to send, or just based on what you happen to like that day? And trust me, those are not mutually exclusive! On the contrary.
I have many clients who come to me saying that they can never stick to a fragrance for long, that they tend to switch often, if not daily. Why?
Because our perfume sends olfactory messages to us too and we do not want to "lie" by default. You can like one perfume one day, because it speaks the truth about your mood that day. And hate it the next, because your mood has shifted and the scent suddenly becomes an untrue message.
The goal of custom perfumes is not to communicate your mood or your momentary fancy. It is to communicate your character, your personality and by extension communicate to you about what you want to become or be perceived as and subliminally push you that way. That is why personal custom perfumes are that much more precious to us. Because if they are done right, they do not lie.
But you don't have to have a custom perfume to have a scent that does not lie. You just have to choose your perfumes more mindfully, think about what the scent says, what message is sends to your brain. Chances are, the message will be more or less the same for most people.
And before you tell me that it is hard, that the perfume with the right message might be one you do not like... There is always a perfume that is right for you and one that you can love at the same time :)
Let me know if you would like more thoughts like this, as I am full of ideas :)