NEW YORK — American Eagle Outfitters is turning its focus to the girls. The private label clothing company is set to launch its first woman’s scent, Aura, this September. The new scent marks the company’s second foray into the fragrance category — Alive, a unisex scent, made its debut in 2000.
This story first appeared in the June 14, 2002 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.
The Mission: American Eagle Outfitters (AE) is counting on Aura to help round out the company’s personal care component. “It will greatly add to our lifestyle offerings,” said Susan Miller, vice president and general merchandising manager. The brand currently offers two sizes of Alive fragrance spray as well as a range of ancillary items.
The Concept: According to Miller, the company decided to base the scent’s name and concept on “auras” to represent a girl’s changing mood. “The AE girl is an original and she needed an original fragrance concept,” she explained. Aura addresses woman aged 16 to 34 — the company’s core age group. “We are really going to build the excitement in-store with our sales associates,” said Miller.
The Goal: While Miller refused to discuss numbers, industry sources estimate the new scent could bring in about $10 million in first-year retail sales. Aura is set to make its debut in more than 669 AE locations, including 639 U.S. doors and 30 doors in Canada, as well as online at Ae.com. A 1.7-oz. bottle will retail for $25. Ancillary items will follow next year.
The Creation: Each bottle, designed to echo a woman’s curves, comes with three interchangeable plastic rings — in pink, blue and green — meant to adorn the bottle’s neck and represent changing moods. The juice, created by Givaudan, has floral accords in addition to notes of Chinese mandarin and Florida grapefruit, magnolia blossoms, French jasmine, violet petals and white musk.
The Message: The marketing campaign for Aura will include direct-mail pieces and print advertising in select magazines such as Teen People and Cosmo Girl. Ads are scheduled to break in August and September books. “We learned a lot about fragrance with Alive,” Miller continued. “With Aura, we took what we learned and gave it a very feminine, positive spin.” A men’s fragrance may be next for the company.