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Foraying Into Fragrance Marketing


Bringing to the forefront the importance of scent marketing and hygiene


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Foraying Into Fragrance Marketing

The sense of smell not only signals the brain about pleasant, disgusting or dangerous things but also stores memories associated with such smells. Another important attribute of fragrance or scent is the sense of freshness that it imparts. As a result - and much to the chagrin of green cleaning evangelists - to this day, customers prefer to use traditional cleaning chemicals with a pleasant smell since the smell imparts freshness and thereby must be clean.

This concept is not altogether misplaced. It’s been a while that fragrance has been considered by all manufacturers of cleaning products to be an important factor for them - and it has become more important over the years - according to a new international survey by ECJ (European Cleaning Journal) and IFRA UK. In fact, it reported that, ‘Cleaning products and air-care are an important sector for perfumers and fragrance houses. Crucially, fragrance plays a role in hygiene as it can reflect the ambience of the place in question and also encourage cleanliness - hand-wash, for instance, when pleasantly fragranced, encourages more enthusiastic use and therefore better hand hygiene amongst children’.
Today, the sense of smell is being used to maximum advantage in consumer marketing. Clean Middle East speaks to international and regional brands involved in customising fragrances, and touches upon how fragrance marketing fits into the concept of cleaning and hygiene.

Importance of fragrance dispensing

Effective ambient fragrance in any environment has many benefits. In today’s competitive business environment, creating memorable experiences and emotional connections with consumers is critical to win consumer spending and long-term brand loyalty. “Brand marketing is important as visitors tend to associate the scent with the site, thereby triggering memory and brand reinforcement whilst at the same time being differentiated from the competition,” says Renaud Janin, Division Manager, Rezaroma.

Maggie Kyle, Account and Marketing Manager, Air Aroma, adds, “Brands are able to connect with consumers on a deeper emotional level. Scent can attract new customers, increase sales, heighten value perception, and expand brand recognition and customer satisfaction.” A high quality fragrance that is suited to a certain type of facility can also shift perceptions; for instance, a calming fragrance in a busy work environment can reduce stress levels. According to Janin, another important factor is to deal with odour remediation to create a fresh environment, an example being changing rooms or washrooms.

Akram Aschi, Director, Shams Conseils, says, “Unconsciously, a value judgment is made, and we can consider the space as clean, new, dynamic, etc. All spaces work their beauty – the décor is neat and enhanced by light. Only the presence of a fragrance makes it unique and memorable.”

The global industry

The global market for fragrance marketing has been developing gradually and changing constantly for about 20 years. “In Europe, the personalisation of fragrance brands and spaces is understood. In the GCC, for now, olfactory marketing is summed up to diffusing a more or less good smell, but not necessarily adapted to the space,” says Akram. He adds that gradually, it will become evident with the pulse of top notch companies that understand the necessity of customisation and the new avenues it opens up. Janin counters this, “In the GCC region, especially in the UAE, fragrance is an even bigger thing; the population in the Middle East is culturally very sensitive to fragrance, and the desired intensity of fragrance is higher than anywhere else in the world. It is thought that the Dubai hospitality market has the highest fragrance equipment rate in the world. Hospitality is currently the biggest market for fragrance, but retail is growing strong and residential and washrooms are rising stars.”

The hygiene-fragrance link

Hygiene without fragrance does not work. The maintenance of a space requires that the products used must be perfumed. If we feel nothing after the maintenance, we can consider that there has been no maintenance. Akram says, “But using hygiene products, with classic scents, can give a poor image. Therefore, it is important to adapt the fragrance to the space to clean. We are constantly working to improve the olfactory perception of our fragrances, spaces which they are intended.” Janin cautions, “However, fragrance should not be used to hide the fact that a place is unclean, as this creates dissonance between senses (view vs. smell)."

Neither of the three companies uses sanitising agents in their fragrances. Air Aroma, though, has essential oils that often contain inherent anti-bacterial properties. Kyle says, “The therapeutic integrity of all its essential oil fragrances is maintained through our patented cold-air diffusion technology. The diffusion via cold air ensures the purity of the essential oil fragrance and in addition, provides anti-bacterial properties that clean the air and naturally fight the spread of air-borne bacteria.”

Customising scents

With close to two decades of experience, Air Aroma prides itself on an unmatched level of scent marketing experience and knowledge. Together, its dedicated team of perfumers, branding experts and visual designers creates scents that tell stories and better connect brands with consumers. The innovative scent creation process delivers distinctive signature scents creating unrivalled results for clients.

Kyle says, “Our scent delivery systems apply flat-line diffusion technology. This guarantees a constant level of scent regardless of the quantity of fragrance left in the cartridge (compared to evaporation or gel-based diffusion systems). Thanks to our patented technology called ‘cold-air diffusion’, we ensure that the quality of each fragrance is maintained throughout the entire diffusion process. Unlike heated or evaporation methods, cold-air diffusion ensures the oils natural properties are maintained, without compromising the integrity and quality of the aroma.

Rezaroma works extensively with its principle partners - multi-national, high-end fragrance houses that create some of the most well-known personal fragrances for leading luxury brands. Janin says that it’s very important to ensure that the fragrance is a quality one that meets international standards such as compliance with Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), the State of California restrictions, the American Congress of Governmental and Industrial Hygienists (ACGIH), and the International Fragrance Association (IFRA). He adds, “Our Prolitec range is also eco-friendly, with its AirQ technology being recognised as a LEED building enabler. As members of IFRA, our perfumers adhere to strict safety, purity and manufacturing guidelines.”

Akram says, “Our business at Shams Conseils is mainly the creation of custom fragrance. We view each client as unique, and therefore offer him its exclusive signature scent. Our teams are constantly working on the discovery of compositions or ingredient that will make the success of our customers. In matters of R&D we work on the best way to make fragrance diffusion, simple efficient and quiet. But we also work on new and innovative media for the scents.”

The client brief

Signature scents are beautifully complex creations, created from only the best ingredients from around the world. Each ingredient is carefully selected, all with the brand in mind. Kyle says, “In order to create a signature scent for a brand, we immerse ourselves into the brand, fully understanding all facets of the business. We require essential branding information to be translated into a bespoke signature fragrance.

Such information is not limited to key brand identifiers, target audience, interior design, and main objectives of the fragrance.” Janin, elaborates upon the Rezaroma process. “When we work with a brand, we make an initial consultation that includes an extensive questionnaire and site survey to determine their target customer demographics, environment, décor and objectives. This will give the opportunity for the perfume house to deliver options and for us present these custom fragrances for client’s selection and then address their needs.” Akram on the other hand states a simple process of a 2-page document where the customers summarise what they think they are, in simple words. The idea is to understand the client's DNA, to put it into fragrance.

With the increasing emphasis on hospitality in the GCC region, it is no doubt that this market will pick up even further to ensure that all customers associate brands with their fragrances and cleanliness in the near future.


Air Aroma

Originating from the Swiss Alps, Swissôtel Hotels & Resorts seamlessly integrates the unique character of Swiss tradition and local culture into the renowned guest experience. Passionate about their heritage, Swissôtel partnered with Air Aroma to create a bespoke signature fragrance inspired by the natural beauty of the alpine environment. The aromatic Swissôtel signature fragrance is a delicate essential oil blend featuring soothing and coniferous scent notes of Lavender, Australian White Cypress, Fir Needle, and Ylang Ylang. The Swissôtel signature fragrance translates the core brand elements of wellness, vitality and sustainability by welcoming guests to relax and restore.


Abercrombie & Fitch - the retailer that focuses on upscale casual wear for young consumers – required a fragrance not only for the ambient scenting of their stores but also a unisex fragrance range. Prolitec came up with several options, and the final selection was a fragrance that was rolled out internationally to all their stores including the UAE.

Shams Conseils

The Burgundy Hotel in Paris asked us to work on a scent that will perfectly describe the charms of this 5-star hotel in the heart of Paris. Intense, the scent we created, has been diffused in the lobby and bar of the hotel, candles and room sprays made to be sold. We also made small samples to be offered to the customers as well as vacuum perfume for the housekeeping division. Lastly the fragrance has been used into the amenities products; shampoo, shower gel, soap and face cream.