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Live from New York: Sharing the Fantasy

By: Nancy Jeffries
Posted: August 7, 2006

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The next HBA events will be the annual HBA Health & Beauty America trade show and conference, PCITX, Personal Care Ingredients & Technology Expos, and Inside Beauty, on September 12–14, 2006, at New York’s Javits Center.

Fragrance Foundation Hosts Selling Scents

The Fragrance Foundation hosted a panel discussion at New York City’s Museum of Television & Radio. The event, which was followed by a cocktail reception and showing of television fragrance advertising through the years, brought back memories of “Sharing the Fantasy,” “An Aviance Night,” “Charlie” and more, while the discussion injected a new perspective into a field long dominated by sensual suggestion, limited copy and as much skin as television would allow.

Rochelle Bloom, president of The Fragrance Foundation, noted that there are now 300 new fragrance entries annually, and that the event marked 55 years of celebrating fragrance advertising. The panelists included Stuart Elliott, advertising columnist, The New York Times; Tom Julian, trend expert, McCann Erickson North America; Neil Kraft, president, Kraftworks; David Lipman, chairman, Lipman; and Robert Passikoff, PhD, founder and president, Brand Keys, Inc. Stephanie Saull Thompson, a reporter for Advertising Age, moderated.

The panelists explored the challenges of branding fragrance in the media and distinguishing brands among the competition. Stuart Elliott noted that “high-end categories are somewhat lagging behind, as compared to cars and fast foods,” citing print ads, scent strips and gifts-with-purchase as the predominant modes of fragrance promotion. Tom Julian said an industry with so much excitement seems to have fallen short in online experiences, adding that “New media and online brand expression will need to be addressed by the fragrance business.” Passikoff said it was important not to fall into the bad habit of utilizing technology without understanding how to best leverage it,” while Lipman offered, “It’s always about the ideas.”

The panelists offered diverse ways to look at fragrance advertising phenomena, with Julian concluding that “Vision, understanding, expression and experience are key, but exchange with the consumer is essential.”

ICMAD’s Cosmetic Regulatory Workshop