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Telling the Story of Luxury Fragrance

By: Abby Penning
Posted: November 3, 2010, from the November 2010 issue of GCI Magazine.
Parfums d’Orsay Paris

The Tilleul fragrance from Parfums d’Orsay Paris’ Intemporelle range is the company’s best seller.

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Obviously, the luxury consumer is incredibly important to both these brands, and Histoires de Parfums finds itself looking for specific ways to reach them. “As a luxury perfume collection, we include luxury service, and that means maintaining a close relationship with our customers—answering their questions and guiding them in their search for perfume,” Ghislain says, commenting that the company also uses social networking and blogs to maintain this type of relationship with its customers. This knowledge also helps lead Histoires de Parfums to meet its clientele in the right places. “The most effective way of reaching consumers is to be in the right place when they are looking to buy something special,” Ghislain explains, and to continue doing that, the company is considering luxury cruise ships as a potential point-of-sale for the collection, in addition to its current exclusive retailers.

Parfums d’Orsay Paris’ positioning is as a very selective niche perfume brand that includes quality product, and highly focused audience communication and distribution through its retailers of independent stores, luxury perfumeries, department stores and concepts stores. Commenting on how Parfums d’Orsay Paris shied away from following the trend of partnering with larger beauty companies during the ‘70s and ‘80s, she says, “Our familiar house of perfume did not follow this mold of investing in huge communication tools or trying to fit [by using] market studies and consumers’ behavior development. We are working hard on positioning the brand to preserve its soul as an elegant, classic and original house of perfumes, keeping its value at the very high end and products in a very exclusive positioning.” The company, it should be noted, now also connects with its customers through its website, Facebook and blogs.

To most effectively reach its niche consumers, however, Huet explains that the company’s strategy is “Being ourselves. Being faithful to our values,” which include character, quality, praise, creativity, seduction, understatement and originality. “Parfums d’Orsay is a patrimonial house that advocates elegant perfumery around these seven values,” Huet notes.

Ghislain also feels one of the best ways for his brand to really reach its luxury consumer is to maintain a consistent, high-quality product. “I think that today, the real luxury is simplicity, quality of raw materials and freedom of mind to create a really unique product,” he says. “We are a timeless brand; we don’t aim to be a fad or follow the fashion trends of the moment.” And moving ahead, Ghislain is looking to introduce Histoires de Parfums scents through other perfuming methods, including powders, oils and solids.

As for Parfums d’Orsay Paris, the company is looking to maintain its niche and growth while also continuing to satisfy its loyal customers with new and updated fragrances, as well as consistent high-quality service—values to which it has always subscribed. “Our line is unique because of its history and because we are still a familial house with all the strength and energy you could have in this kind of company,” Huet says, and its clearly something both these perfumes houses are looking to maintain for the long term.