Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Interesting article here from today's LA Times. It details a new marketing strategy which aims to use smell psychology to help sell products. This new rage, labeled "scent marketing" is just another subversive tactic used by marketing firms and corporations to undermine free-choice. Alright that previous statement might have been a bit harsh and over-zealous, but really?...this has potentially huge implications in economic theory, which says that consumers shouldn't be persuaded to buy a product because of insidious and inconspicuous marketing techniques. And it seems to work to.

"In 2006, when ScentAndrea, a scent marketing company in Santa Barbara, put chocolate scent strips on 33 vending machines in factory break rooms in Ventura (plus a sign that said it was Hershey's candy people were smelling) the brand's sales tripled."

What's next? Maybe stores can send undercover henchmen with clubs to circulate through their stores and knock out unsuspecting customers (victims?), forcing products into their hands, and taking money from their wallets...You may say, "well that is a bit extreme" but really current methods of marketing are getting pretty close. We are bombarded daily with images and sounds and now smells that are all contrived to sway us to buy a certain product or eat at a certain fast-food restaurant or wear a certain type of jeans or else you won't be cool and you won't have any friends and high school and then girls won't like you (I'm still trying to figure out what those magic jeans are...so I can go out and buy them!).