Baby products maker Johnson & Johnson wants to try and appeal to its customers’ olfactory senses with their latest advertising effort that infuses the smell of baby powder into a newspaper. The company took out a full-page advertisement in various Indian dailies that included The Times of India, The Hindu, and Malayala Manorama.
Sensory branding isn’t groundbreaking, just look at the perfumed strips that have been in high-end fashion magazines for years, but J&J have proved that it’s not just perfume companies that can benefit from the approach. Smell is just one avenue of attack, in 2010, Volkswagen India put out an audio ad in The Times of India that spoke to readers about a particular car.
The trademark fragrance was supplied by the company to the publishers who then used a special technology to infuse it into the ink that was used to print the paper.
“We felt that there was a strong connection between the scent of the Johnson’s baby powder and the millions of sweet gentle memories that parents have with their little one,” said a spokesperson for OMD, the media agency that executed the ad. “From this germinated the thought of a ‘scented newspaper’.”
Physical newspapers may not be very effective forms of advertising in the west, but in India and many other developing countries, they still command many millions of readers. With J&J leading the way, it might not be long before some of the big FMC corporations try their hand at sensory branding.
Images: Johnson & Johnson