Scent Marketing – the world beyond sight and sound.


Wet soil after the first rains. Fresh brewed coffee. Bread baking in the oven. Maa’s chapatis. Freshly bathed babies.

Smells can trigger powerful memories and feelings. And now, marketers are taking advantage of this fact to put their customers in the buying frame of mind. 


The stale air of a pressurized airline cabin isn’t the best smelling space, as every weary traveler knows. Singapore Airlines recognized this over 30 years ago, and was one of the first to develop a custom scent to spray into their hot towels. The floral and citrus fragrance was so popular that the airline gave it a name: Stefan Floridian Waters.


Starbucks sells food too. But ever wondered why you can smell only coffee there? That’s by design.

Dark greens and wooden décor, chalkboard menus, soft music, and the scent of fresh coffee permeates each location.



Movie-theatre popcorn never tastes the same at home. It doesn’t matter that they also sell pizza, nachos, and other foods. Their scent brand is fresh popcorn. Movie attendees will see and hear it being made, too, which adds context to the smell.



Artificial scents like baking bread and chocolates are pumped into stores and malls as they are found to have a strong effect on shoppers’ moods.

Happy people make happy shoppers.



A study done by Nike discovered that they could increase the intent to purchase by 84% through the introduction of scent into their stores.


strategically selects locations for their stores where scents get trapped so that the smell of their fresh cinnamon rolls can linger.

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