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Now Smell This…The Future of Outdoor

They say smell is one of our strongest senses and is most closely tied to our memories and emotions. Walking by a bakery pulling out a batch of freshly baked chocolate chip cookies can conjure up a whole host of mental snapshots. Now, turn that bakery into a digital billboard for, say, a “famous” cookie company, and you have the type of thing marketers’ dreams are made of.

Think this possibility lives in the distant future? Think again. According to mediaplannerbuyer.com, Tokyo-based NTT Communications began testing this technology yesterday in front of Kirin City Beer Hall in Tokyo’s Yaesu Shopping Mall. The aroma-enhanced digital signage (called Kaoru Digital Signage) will be in place through December and will emit lemon and orange scents (typically associated with beer). The company hopes to gauge the sign’s effectiveness in attracting the attention of mall shoppers.

It will be interesting to see the impact this technology has both on results and general popular opinion. If it takes off, just think of all the possibilities here in the States…and you thought walking through a department store perfume section was rough…

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