Verbal Smell References In Radio Advertisements

“You can almost smell the smoky and delicious aroma of your steak grilling to perfection” – says the radio ad for your local restaurant. But can you really ‘almost smell’ the aroma when you hear the ad? If so, how could you quantify that? A team of investigators at Virginia Tech have investigated just such a scenario. By way of a between-subjects experiment conducted on undergraduate students who listened to a set of sample radio ads like the one above, the researchers were able to make progress towards pinning down the science of almost-smelling and almost-tasting, Determining that :

“… a verbal smell reference in a radio ad significantly influences a potential consumer’s ability to almost smell and almost taste the advertised product.”

The paper ‘The Influences Of Verbal Smell References In Radio Advertisements’  by Eric A. Davis, Vincent P. Magnini, Pamela A. Weaver, and  Nancy Gard McGehee is published in the Journal of Hospitality & Tourism Research, February 10, 2012