Which scent do you like more? The fresh baked bread aroma from the Subway Shop, or the fusion of smells that radiates out of the Yankee candle store when you pass by its open doors at the mall? While retailers for a long time have used the power of scent to entice you into their shops, a recent study has proven that not only will a simple scent cause you to spend more money but it will also help you to do it more quickly.
In this study, co-authored by Andreas Herrmann from Switzerland’s University of St. Gallen; David Sprott, a Washington State marketing professor; and Manja Zidansek, a marketing doctoral candidate, more than 400 customers at a home decorating store were exposed to a simple orange scent, a more complex scent of orange, basil and green tea, or no scent at all. Those exposed to the simple orange scent bought more items and spent on average 20 percent more than the other two groups did.
In another experiment, the researchers’ asked undergraduates to solve word problems. The control group that smelled the simple orange scent solved more of the word problems in less time- indicating that a simple aroma might enhance “processing fluency”, which would allow people to make spending decisions more quickly and easily.
While those creatives that have a passion for cooking may only be able to see their talents best utilized in the restaurant or catering arena, this study proves that their are more opportunities to use culinary skill at the cash register if we only use our imaginations to invent new markets for our talents.
About Lisa Canning
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