Purchasing Behaviours
Product: Jo Malone

I truly believe a perfume is more than just a scent, it can give you a feeling of confidence and power. I always feel more beautiful if I have a perfume I like on, some say you’re never fully dressed without perfume. Sometimes the way a product makes you feel is the most important thing – and often these are the reasons people want to buy. Advertising perfume is a tricky business… and I am always intrigued with how a brand can create an advert to sell a product, especially perfume. How can you get a consumer to desire a product or a smell – that they can’t smell? The point is they’re creating a lifestyle need or a desire that comes within the product. We go through hundreds of interactions every day, this may be through an advertisement on television, radio, social media but also from things you may not notice (e.g. earned media) such as friends and family, things you see in the street and general word of mouth.


I recently purchased Jo Malone’s Cologne Collection (Links to an external site.) and thought this was an interesting subject to discuss the various touch points that may have influenced my purchase. After understanding more about touch points within advertising, I’ve thought about my journey with this product and all the touch points I had.


Friends and Family


Unknowingly, my aunt had been using Jo Malone perfume for a number of years. I’ve always thought she smelt nice and, on several occasions, asked her what perfume she was wearing. She was always happy to tell me about the perfume and particularly the brand, which I guess, filtered unconsciously into this purchase. My aunt always promoted the quality of the product, which for me, knowing I am going to get a good quality from a brand is a comfort - and this can be portrayed within the marketing. This is known as earned media, when the brand has created a conversation/ someone who advertises there brand purely because they love it. For me having this type of trustworthy first-hand information gives me security with what I may purchase.


Social Influencers


 Instagram is my go-to platform, and after a lot of thought…even within posts that aren’t advertising Jo Malone I can think of many influencers and other people who have had this brand within there post, or on their story or in the background. I have always been unaware that this was affecting me quite as much as it does. Social influencers on many different platforms can create content that draws your attention to a brand or their products. I now see these are much more effective than I had ever realised. It’s about getting the thoughts into the consumers head, reminding them of the brand - for me this is how and where this type of advertising works best.


General Marketing & Brand Image


Having seen advertisements on television and in magazines I was particularly attracted to the branding. Jo Malone uses a very classical and timeless branding, with the brand name clearly stated within a black boarded box. A very clean, black and white boarded design. Particularly using a significant use of white space to ensure focus on the brand name. I truly believe that choosing white space is still a choice. It’s a decision you make for the design and sometimes white space can speak louder. They often create special edition boxes, and these seem to be designed in an art deco style, created to interlace alongside the initial design and brand image

I believe packaging has a huge power and a huge impact. People keep the packaging because it’s something admired, they want to have it in the background of photos or be seen with a bag in the street. I certainly understand this feeling - who doesn’t want to feel like pretty woman when they go shopping. To demonstrate my point interestingly, Jo Malone got 50 of her friends/ family to walk in the streets with an empty bag, because she understood this was one of the best ways to advertise the brand.

Jo Malone helps me create my identity, the same way I express myself through clothing. The perfumes are created so you can layer the fragrances and for me this was a great selling point as it creates an opportunity to create a signature design for you. This also gives more from the product in terms of money, you buy the five items, but you get multiple options.

Many things impact my decision to buy, some I didn’t even realise happen and I’m sure many more that I still don’t know about. But this exercise has helped me understand that direct marketing is only a very small part of an overall marketing strategy and that other influences also play a major part in all purchasing decisions.