Thursday, May 18, 2006


Though I don't condone anyone drinking alcohol, unless they have to (i.e. caught in snowstorm in South Pole with only tonic or spirit around to keep warm), I cannot help but find that wine tasters are experiencing extraordinary journey of senses.

Basically we have the usual Five senses; touch, taste, sight, hearing and smell. Babies at age of 4 are already using these senses to the max. However, we're not going to talk babies here. Let's talk about how commercialism market products through senses.

A wine taster will usually have the wine poured in some artistic manner, using sight. Anyway, then they pick up the glass, swirl the wine around, a sense of touch there of the water moving, then a smell and lastly a sip, for taste. No sound however, unless you wanna consider the sound of the wine bottle hitting the glass during pouring.

Another product which seriously market nearly all the senses is Coke. Watch any ad. Stimulation of the sight looking at drink flowing between ice in the cup, the hearing of the fizzy sound, the touch of the cold glass and finally the taste of Coke. No smell here though, coz' I don't find anything interesting about the smell of Coke. That's why Coke (or Pepsi) do very well though it's just coloured drink with gas and sugar and some taste-product.

Cigarettes, smell yup, sight yup, taste yup, touch... err.. not really and no to hearing, unless you can hear smoke. Pringles, the priority of marketing is the hearing "krup krup krup" and then the rest. Handphones, competitors are purely marketing on the looks (after customers already compared the specs), no smell there unless your sweaty friend has just used the phone.

Basically, at least one sense is made a priority in marketing of any products or services. What do you see when people buy shoes or badminton racket? The first is actually the sight, and then the touch. Imagine if a kid buys a badminton racket saying "I like the smell of this one!". Whatever it is, majority of products, thanks to media, are promoting products firstly on the sight, followed by others. Radio tries to project the image of the product, say Coke, by the sound of the first fizz when you open the Coke can, then the sound of glup glup glup, and then that duh "ahhhhh...." sound. Aromatherapy markets using the sense of smell.

Which product then, actually prioritise the sense of touch or taste FIRST? I don't think there's any. Surely it's the sight, the hearing or the smell of a product is the first stimulation for interest. To close a deal by taste yes, "Abang, jangan beli lagi, rasa dulu." You will never face anyone saying "Tutup mata dulu, rasa ni, lepas tu decide." Ya right, would you trust a stranger putting something into your mouth?

Seriously, what product prioritise touch or taste? Massages? I hardly think so.

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