Calvin Klein turned to “It” actress Margot Robbie when it needed a face for Deep Euphoria, the latest addition to its $200 million Euphoria fragrance franchise.
The original, 11-year-old Euphoria is a blockbuster for Calvin Klein, joining the ranks of the company’s three leading pillars — Obsession, Eternity and CK One — and constituting about a quarter of an $800 million fragrance business. Deep Euphoria Calvin Klein could do $70 million in retail sales during its first year. The fragrance, which retails for $52 to $92 and includes a $24 rollerball, a $30 body wash and $46 lotion, will go on sale globally in August and in the U.S. in September.
This will be Calvin Klein’s first major addition to the fragrance since unveiling the original scent in 2005 with Russian model Natalia Vodianova as the face of the campaign. Forbidden Euphoria came out in 2011 and Endless Euphoria in 2014 — both were created as one-offs — but Coty Inc., which holds the Calvin Klein fragrance license, has bigger plans for Deep Euphoria. The company is billing the scent as the next fragrance pillar “that can stand on its own next to the original” Euphoria. This means that consumers can expect launches in the coming months, such as a more intense or “fresher” version.
Vincent Brun, senior vice president of global marketing of Calvin Klein Fragrances, Coty Inc., said that the company worked to differentiate itself from the original Euphoria that came out in 2005 — also the last fragrance launch designer Calvin Klein had a hand in before departing his namesake brand.
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While talking to an “elevated, sophisticated” woman was the idea behind the original Euphoria and still holds true with the new scent, Brun pointed out that the goal was to bring another side to the story. The Deep Euphoria customer is still elevated and sophisticated, but she’s also empowered — and younger.
“That’s why we went for Margot Robbie. She embodies a young generation of empowered independent women. She’s very Calvin Klein. She’s very sensual but at the same time, she’s sophisticated,” Brun said.
Robbie, whose first memory of Calvin Klein fragrance was of her mother wearing Eternity, told WWD that the brand’s advertising campaigns “really stand the test of time.” To her, Calvin Klein is one of a handful of brands that remains as relevant today as it was over two decades ago.
“I loved the campaigns featuring Mark Wahlberg and Kate Moss in the early Nineties. Yeah, they were provocative, but the simplicity made them so cool,” said Robbie, who plays Jane in “The Legend of Tarzan” that hits theaters Friday. “Calvin Klein has always felt so effortless. Effortlessly cool, effortlessly sexy, effortlessly sophisticated. Never trying too hard. I think that’s what I love about it so much.”
In addition to a new face, Deep Euphoria brings an updated bottle and an entirely different scent to the franchise, according to Brun. The signature aubergine color and shape of the original curved, contoured bottle are the same, but silver accents have been replaced with glossy black ones.
The actual fragrance, created by perfumers Honorine Blanc and Ann Gottlieb at Firmenich, will be Calvin Klein’s first chypre floral. The scent has top notes of cascalone, white pepper and mandarin leaves, midnotes of black magic rose and a base of musk and patchouli.
An aggressive marketing strategy will kick off today, including traditional and digital campaigns that Brun called “very different than anything we’ve done before.” At launch, 45 percent of the media budget will go to TV, with 25 percent going to print and 25 percent to digital. The remaining five percent will be dedicated to out of home.
“The concept of the creative is all about the morning after, where she wakes up to the morning light of her hotel room as the previous evening suddenly begins to reveal itself,” said Melisa Goldie, chief marketing officer at Calvin Klein, adding that the campaign is about a youthful, adventurous, downtown girl.
Print and TV advertising — images were shot by Craig McDean and the commercial by Francis Lawrence, director of “The Hunger Games” — are part of the plan, but the biggest focus will be on digital.
Goldie maintained that digital is critical in extending the story and amplifying the consumer experience and the brand created exclusive digital content to convey this.
The Deep Euphoria commercial, which will air in August in the U.K. and a month later in the U.S., will hit calvinklein.com and all corresponding social media channels this week. A series of three vignettes — a 30-, a 20- and a 10-second film with three specific stories linked to the global creative — were shot exclusively for online use, as well as behind-the-scenes footage and director’s cuts. The digital content will launch in the U.K. in August and in the U.S., Spain and travel retail in early September. Print ads will debut in mid-August in September books.
“Obviously when Euphoria was launched in 2005, there was no digital at that point,” Brun said of introducing a fragrance now versus a decade ago. “It was a beautiful launch, but that was 12 years ago and now we know that we have to be good at every level.”
He’s referring to digital, calling it the first time that a Calvin Klein fragrance has made digital such an integral part of its launch strategy. It’s a similar approach to Michael Kors, another digitally savvy brand that created exclusive online content for the debut of its Wonderlust fragrance in August.