5 Questions to Ask When Creating a Fragrance for Your Personal Care Brand

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As the personal care market continues to expand in both established and emerging markets around the world, consumers are making their purchasing choices based on perceived value, quality ingredients, personal preference, effective applications, and, of course, fragrance.

These products — which include lotions, soaps, bath and body applications, hair and skin care, spa and wellness, and cosmetics — control billions of dollars in the global personal care market. The market is far from saturated: the projected growth in Asia alone for skin care products guarantees an influx of new products to meet consumer demand.

The scent that you choose for your product is a crucial part of what makes a product desirable. When I meet with clients, there’s a process that I follow to help them create or extend their brand through the creation of custom scents. Considering the product’s demographic is the initial step, and it’s the one I’ll be explaining. Your brand may attract a large demographic, such as women, but individual products will be developed for certain segments of your audience. When I talk to clients, I first ask who will be using the product, and then start creating a scent from that point.

Will women, men, or both be using the product?

Women’s personal care products are often scented with floral tones like jasmine, gardenia, or rose. Men’s fragrances are masculine, with leather, spicy, or woody scents. If the product is unisex, then I may balance a mid-tone floral scent with woody notes. At this point, I can start determining what the overall scent will smell like, and what other notes can be mixed in to create a custom fragrance.

What age group is targeted?

Younger consumers, especially women, often choose sweeter smells. They are also more likely to change their personal care products more frequently, which means that they enjoy trying a diverse blend of goods, while older demographic groups prefer classic fragrances and brands.

What is the climate where the product will be used?

Personal care product scents can be constructed based upon the region of the world where it will be sold. This is an important distinction because climate often determines the concentration of a scent. Southern regions tend to favor light, fresh, and clean scents, while northern climates include heavier scents that will “stick” through the day and into the evening.

What is the product?

Some products are made to carry a stronger scent that is expected to last for the entire day, such as shampoos. Others products, like lotions or creams, use just a splash of fragrance with a very light scent. It’s not meant to overwhelm the product’s main use, which may be protection or hydration. When Alpha Aromatics creates a scent, we will test fragrances in the product to see if it’s the right balance and to ensure that the lotion is doing the work—not the scent.

What is the purchase price?

There is massive variance between the prices of personal care products that are sold around the world. In countries where there’s a greater amount of discretionary income available, the prices can be elevated, which means the quality of the ingredients can be higher, and more profit is to be gained. When the client tells me what the price point is, I know the direction that I’m going to head in as far as the quality and the type of fragrance to develop.

The Importance of Client Relations

I’ve found that when creating fragrances, the most critical factor for a product that satisfies both the client and their customers is communication. I like to sit down with clients, get to know them and their company, and discover what they’re truly looking for in a custom fragrance. Sometimes, what they’re looking for and what they’re asking for is not the same thing. Since people can be unconsciously influenced by their own personal preferences, I help them discover what fragrance will be most attractive to their current and potential customers.

Developing high-quality scented personal care products or diversifying an already robust product line can help you earn an increased market share, advance brand fidelity, and increase profits. Consumers’ personal preference for these products, even more so than the cost, has become the most critical factor as to how they base their purchasing decisions. Once potential customers buy them and try them, they then decide if they’ll become devoted customers who will be eager to invest in your brand.

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