How can multisensory marketing help engage your audience?

Always ones to have an opinion on a current trend, we’ve been discussing multi-sensory marketing here at Valiant, and we’ve noticed some pretty intriguing campaigns and research….

It stands to reason that if taste is 70% smell and turning the radio down in the car will help you see your destination easier (according to me), then taking multiple senses into account when planning your marketing activity, is a must.

This isn’t anything new, companies have invested tirelessly into creating specific sensory experiences for their customers for years; how would you feel walking into a Boots store with deep red walls and heavy metal music? Or having your washing powder smell like wet dog? These are extreme examples, but retail clothing-giant Hollister create an intensely precise sensory experience in their stores.  Very dim lighting and club-like music appeals to their teenage target market.

Multi-sensory marketing isn’t just for the food industry or shops. Sensory print is a bold way to add something thought provoking to your collateral. There is the ability to add smell, touch and even taste to print. The technologies and applications of sensory print are always growing, the recent awareness of 3D printing, for example.

We received copious amounts of positive feedback for Valiant’s most recent Christmas card. It generated greater response and we are pretty sure this was down to our design and our innovative use of a tactile print effect, which made our Christmas record feel like a real 45” vinyl.

“Valiant! Genius! As always.”
Jeremy Slessor, Managing Director of 
European Golf Design

There are so many textural effects at our fingertips, debossing, embossing, die cutting, metallics, foil blocking and the list goes on. Print Power suggest that ‘when more than one sense is triggered the effectiveness of the message increases by 30 percent’, due to, among other things, an increase in memorability of the campaign.

In recent months, we’ve seen multi-sensory marketing utilised in new ways. The 2013/14 London NYE fireworks display was joined by peach snow, edible banana confetti and orange scented bubbles enabling the crowd for the first time to see, smell and taste in the new year. Created by food architect specialists Bompas and Parr, and supported the Mayor of London and Vodafone’s London NYE app, the festivities are sure to spark similar campaigns this year.

So, how can you make this relevant to your business? The first question you must ask yourself is what do I want to achieve? Create a memorable one off experience for existing customers and a talking point for the brand to engage new customers? Or build a brand experience as part of your brand identity moving forward? Once you’ve done that you can begin to create a multi-sensory marketing plan for your brand that will really engage with your customers.

If you’d like to talk more about how Valiant can help you develop a sensory experience for your brand please contact Alice on 01252 783106 or You can also keep up to date with our latest guides by signing up here for our regular newsletter.