Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Bursting Out Of Your Own Store(s)

There are still a few examples around of perfumes that get their start as a store brand and then branch out to additional sales outlets.

This was once the story with French designer fragrances. Today it is the story of Victoria's Secret. Tomorrow it could be you.

Victoria's Secret lingerie and other garments are sold ONLY through Victoria's Secret stores, catalogs and website. But Victoria's Secret fragrances are also available through other marketers -- for example.

Why does Victoria's Secret let others sell their fragrances? Two good reasons suggest themselves. FIRST, it is more expensive to launch a new perfume than it is to launch a new bra. By expanding the distribution of their perfumes, Victoria's Secret can take advantage of economics of scale and put more money into both fragrance development and package design and still achieve a lower cost per bottle and a greater profit on each bottle sold.

The SECOND reason is even more obvious. The perfume advertises the brand. When people see Victoria's Secret perfume for sale, they are drawn to the company's stores, catalog, and website. This is exactly what French fashion designers were doing back in the 1930's and 1940's. Pierre Balmain even put his phone number on a fragrance, just as he might have done with a business card.

So, the lesson? If you have a store, stores, catalog or website where you are selling, successfully, your own perfume, look around and see who else might want to sell your perfume -- particularly if the labeling on your bottle could bring new business back to you!

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