A QUIET ENTRANCE FOR ORIGINS SCENT

Byline: Cara Kagan

NEW YORK — Origins Natural Resources is planning to slip into the fragrance business in April, but with barely a promotional splash.
Origins will take a low-key, nonpromotional approach in launching its new women’s fragrance, called Spring Fever. Instead of the spritz blitzes, beefy ad budgets and expensive trappings characteristic of the industry, the company will rely on its sales associates and modest advertising budgets and sampling programs to get the word out.
“Fragrance is consistently one of the top three requests we have been getting from consumers,” said William Lauder, vice president and general manager of Origins, a division of Estee Lauder Cos. “We have waited up until now to do one because we wanted to make sure that we were entering the market in a unique way and were staying true to our positioning.
“Part of that involves introducing a product the way we normally would,” he added. “That means no carpets, elephants or any other bizarre tricks. We feel that since this was such a requested item and because we are so sure about the fragrance itself, we can create enough interest based on a consumer’s first smell.”
Another uncharacteristic approach is the fragrance forms in which Spring Fever is being launched. Instead of the eight-item array of parfums, eau de parfums or eau de toilettes in pours or sprays, which accompany conventional launches, Spring Fever will be available in only two sizes: a 1.7-oz. for $35 and a 0.5-oz. purse size for $20. Both items are described simply as sprays, without identifying the concentration level.
The new scent will be distributed at the company’s 17 freestanding stores and at its roughly 220 department store counters.
While Lauder declined to discuss specific sales or advertising figures, he did say that he anticipates selling around 250,000 units during the first 12 months.
Those unit sales would translate into a retail volume of $5 million to $8.75 million.
Origins is reportedly backing the launch with just under $500,000 in print advertising.
According to Lauder, the campaign is set to break in either April or May, depending on the publication, in six women’s magazines: Elle, Allure, Seventeen, Glamour, Self and Marie Claire.
The company is also planning to advertise via cooperative radio campaigns and through direct mail with department stores.
Origins will also sample Spring Fever in what it describes as its most ambitious sampling effort to date. The company is planning to distribute 100,000 to 250,000 samples at Origins counters this spring.
Sampling and advertising efforts are expected to pick up again during September, Lauder said.
Spring Fever comprises 31 aromas, which the company feels capture the essence of spring. These accords include artemisia, apple, marigold, linden blossom, mandarin, cypress and watermelon.

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