Sensory Advertisement

Pepsi, Coke or Solo? It took me about 3 seconds to think of these drinks. I’m guessing because I have been exposed to them since I was born, and in this context, we are (on average) exposed to approximately 1200 advertisements per day. But surprisingly we only remember 3% of these advertisements. (Lindstorm 2006)

Does this mean that you have basically no chance of getting through to an audience? That there is just a 3% bet with your million-dollar advertising budget to which it may fail? Probably, to an extent, but there potential strategies in which campaigns and brands can make themselves stand out from the rest. I have a deep hatred for Rivers ads (with the annoying 30 second pauses), although they always find a way to make us pay attention. They call this sensory adaption. Perception is the process by which an individual selects, organizes, and interprets stimuli into a meaningful and coherent picture of the world. Every one perceives life differently, and this notion applies with advertising too. (Walls & Schumann 2001)
I came across a post on Facebook that grabbed my attention by US brand ‘Air Aroma’. It was an advertisement that sold diffusers to scent stores; with flavours ranging from sweet strawberries to rich coffee. For me, there is nothing worse than going into a store that just smells horrible and I often feel sorry for the stores you walk into that are starting to smell like rubbish or a sewerage disaster is nearby. This idea for me was genius, because not only could these businesses receive publicity or word-of-mouth from the scents itself, but also the Air Aroma brand could benefit from consumers wanting this in their own homes. This sensory adaption is often used often (not just with smell but also our other 4 sensory receptors as well) in marketing or advertisement. I think that by treating our senses, it can create more of a natural trust and instinct for us to WANT to interact or consume these brands. (Brereton 2016 & Cobos 2012)

Next time you notice your senses tingling after watching an advertisement, just remember it is no accident!

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  • Brereton, L 2016, Learning and Involvement, Lecture Notes Week 6, MARK217, UOW, Delivered 7th April 2016.
  • Lindstrom, M 2006, Brand Sense: How to Build Powerful Brands Through Touch, Taste, Smell, Sight and Sound, Strategic Direction, Vol. 22.
  • Cobos, H 2012, Sensory Marketing and Branding: The power of senses, More Than Branding.
  • Walls, S & Schumann D 2001, Measuring the Customer’s Perception of the Bond Between the Consumer and the Company, AMA Educator’s Conference Proceedings, vol.12, pp. 388-400.

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