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When does it makes sense to invest in a perfume?
(Part 4)

Go back: Distribution

Promotion

Don't spend money developing a fragrance unless you've got a solid plan to promote it -- and coming up with a solid plan to promote a fragrance is not easy.

Go back to market, scale, and distribution to see how many orders you will need to make your promotion profitable and where you expect those orders to come from. Your challenge now is to turn this market – large or small – into a market of buyers.

There is no magic to making sales. One promoter has said that enthusiasm is more powerful than truth or fiction. Buying a fragrance is an emotional decision and, to make sales, the emotions have to be stirred. Logic won't do it.

But your efforts to ignite emotion must be guided. They must follow a well thought out plan. You cannot sell to people unless you can relate to them and they to you. This is why certain "super salespeople" can move from one product to another and continue to sell successfully. They understand the buyers.

Do not expect the scent of your fragrance to sell itself. In the first place, if you are relying on sales to people who have sampled your fragrance you are in trouble. Few people will have the opportunity to sample your fragrance, even if you are fortunate enough to have it in a number of stores. Even those who are able to smell it, and like it, will need guidance to carry them to the point of making a purchase. It is essential that you begin to develop buzz for your fragrance BEFORE people confront the perfume itself.

The buzz is what brings people into the store or, for those who may happen to be shopping in a store that carries your fragrance, to seek out your display. Don't expect people to just stumble across it. You have to drive them, impassion them, win them to your point of view BEFORE they confront the fragrance itself.

How do you do this? What are the hooks? Ask yourself, "What is it that generates an emotional response?"

There are a number of lines you can work along. The "author" of the fragrance can generate an emotional response if he or she has a personal story that is compelling and emotional. Here is where the emotion for celebrity fragrances is generated but, looking into your own personal history, you may find that you have a story about yourself and your perfume that can generate an emotional pull that will then translates into sales.

You might find an emotional pull in the story you develop for your fragrance. What were you thinking when you created it or had it created for you? Was there a theme a bit unusual, a bit attention grabbing, that others can relate to? Will that theme move their hearts?

Sometimes people fall in love with a brand and take an interest in any new product that brand releases. Being new in the field does not rule out the possibility of people being attracted to your brand. Look at all the upstart brands found in the wine racks of liquor stores. The brand NAMES are witty and clever, and they have appeal for their iconoclastic take on wine vending. Wine, like perfume, is sold for the most part to people who are not experts, so that clever brand name is important. Then, under the brand name come the individual wines -- or fragrances.

Relationships can create strong emotional bonds and pulls toward the cash register. If your prospects feel that "you are one of them" and feel they can relate to you, they may want to "support" you in your endeavor. Making your own personality part of your presentation can go a long way... if your personality actually matches that of the people you have targeted.

The lesson

The lesson is simple. You're not ready to develop and launch a new fragrance until you've devised a way to reach your target market and bond with these people in some way that will create an emotional connection, one that drives them to try your fragrance. It's as simple as that.

Next: Knowing how to produce your perfume at the lowest reasonable cost...


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Philip Goutell
Lightyears, Inc.