Sensory Marketing: How to Appeal to Your Customers Through All 5 Senses

By October 3, 2016General

The more senses you can evoke with your marketing campaigns, the more likely you are to force your consumers to stop and take notice. Simply seeing an advertisement is one thing, but being able to touch, taste, smell, and hear it too – turns your marketing efforts from bland, to engaging.

Experiential marketing tactics are perfect for stimulating the senses, which is what makes them such a powerful addition to most brand development strategies. However, some companies still struggle when it comes to determining how they can bond with their customers in a range of different, sensory ways. Fortunately, the following guidance might help.


Sight is obviously the easiest sense to master when it comes to marketing, and it’s the one that’s most closely associated with branding. To make the most of sight, you need images, colours, and videos that are memorable, and capable of evoking emotion.

Taking it a step further – think of how you can get your viewers to engage more with what they see. For instance, 360-degree video will allow a customer to explore the various parts of an advertisement according to their preferences, whereas VR could make advertising into a more interactive experience.


Sound can be a powerful tool in building a brand. Companies have used songs, jingles, and sounds for decades to make products easier to remember, so adding something audible to your experience could help to improve engagement.

Though sound is harder to cater to than image, there are options out there. For instance, how about a phone app that triggers a certain song or notification when your audience member passes by one of your stores in the street, or a musical PR event like a flash mob?


Taste is another easy one – and it doesn’t have to be just for food or drinks brands. For instance, companies can create an event wherein every time their customer uses an online app to interact with them, they earn the chance to win a discount at their favourite restaurant.


Touch is a complicated concept in experiential marketing, but it’s something that your brand can use if you’re willing to be creative. For example, Coca-Cola has a signature hourglass bottle, while Crown Royal sells their whiskey in a purple cloth bag.


Finally, imagine a marketing campaign that focuses on the scent of a freshly baked cinnabon for a baking company, or a spa that advertises with the scent of luxury soaps and moisturizers. While evoking smell in your campaign may require some thinking outside of the box, it can also be highly effective when done right.

When you host a pop-up event, make sure every smell is something you’d want to be associated with your brand (even if this means spreading the scent artificially through strategically placed diffusers). For bakeries, this could be freshly baked bread and pastries, for bookstores – the smell of leather and old pages. The possibilities are endless.

Hotcow is a non-traditional creative agency that specialises in experiential marketing that goes viral. Our campaigns generate buzz through crowd participation, PR, and content sharing. Contact us on 0207 5030442, or email us on