Welcome to Perfume Polytechnic’s Summer Series. I’m taking a break over part of the summer from writing new posts, but instead of stopping publishing altogether, I want to share with you some of my favourite posts from previous years. I hope you enjoy reading them; you may even come across something you missed the first time round!
Today I’m sharing a post from last year that – if I may be so bold – I think deserves a bit more attention. Sometimes some of my more interesting posts seem to slip under the radar, and this is one of them. In this post, I discuss an article by researcher and fragrance consultant Laura Donna, published in Perfumer & Flavorist Magazine in February 2012. Donna’s research shows that Michael Edwards’ (Fragrances of the World) method of selecting/suggesting scent for a customer, based on choosing fragrances from similar categories to the shopper’s favourite scents, results in more successful outcomes than when suggesting scents based on the latest fragrance advertising.
Also relevant to this discussion of perfume advertising and its merits and failings is the scathingly hilarious article by Ashley Davies, Smells Like Pure Bullshit. It’s a funny read if you’re as embarrassed by fragrance advertising as I am. Ashley quips:
Whenever I watch a perfume ad I get thoroughly lost. Not in an intoxicating reverie of romance, passion and fantasy, but puzzling over what the jolly old heck the people behind these commercials think about women.
The briefing sessions between the clients and the ad agencies must go something like this:
Agency guy: “So, what are you hoping to achieve here?”
Client: “I don’t really care, as long as a stunning woman looks like she’s been lobotomised – or at the very least has been sprinkling horse meds in the Nutribullet.”
Agency guy, nodding, steepling fingers: “Yar, yar. I hear you, yar. You’ll be wanting her to behave like a spoilt little girl who craves all the drama, yar, despite this being a product targeted at adults, yar?”
Client makes a gun shape with his finger: “Correctamundo.”
Also good for laughs is Fry and Laurie’s mock fragrance advertisement “Pretension”. If you haven’t seen it, do have a watch. It’s a great send-up of modern perfume ads.
Without any further ado or additional discussion, here’s the article…