Is he not fragrant? On the scent of the New Lad

The Market

Which ads do you hate most in all the world? That awful Air Canada "home video" one? Soap powders? Ferro Rocher? Come on, that's nothing. When it comes right down to it, fragrance commercials are probably the worst genre of advertising on our screens, bar none. They're so bad that Boddingtons has thrown out an enormously successful spoof of them, all greased male bodies worshipping the sun in pseudo classical poses while heroic music stirs in the background. It's an advertising style that hasn't changed in years and probably jars so badly because the films are often made in Europe or the US then exported around the world.

Male fragrance Lynx has always been one of the guilty parties. No more, boasts brand manager Jeremy Kanter. "These days people want ads that don't patronise them. We're launching a new Lynx brand, Lynx Inca, and our marketing is a complete breakthrough. Our new ad is all animated, which is a first, and it's going to be tied in with all sorts of mad stuff that we'll be doing in clubs and bars across the country."

What he means by the "mad stuff" is Bar Inca, Fantazia and the Lynx Minxes. Bar Inca involves something so far unprecedented in the world of advertising - an advertiser actually setting up a nightclub. Initially a touring club, Bar Inca will come to rest in Soho on the site of the old Si Senor restaurant. Lynx has hired bands like Dodgy and The Prodigy to play, will deck the bar out in suitably South American style and will bring the touring Lynx Minxes back to roost in March.

The Lynx Minxes are, well, have a guess... Yup. They're four Latin American dancers who will perform sexy routines at Bar Inca and its on-the-road version, which pulls in at all the funky bars in most major conurbations. Of course, the Minxes also encourage young men to squirt a bit of the old Lynx Inca scent on themselves, and they'll also show up to dance at the climax event, which is Lynx's tie up with Fantazia.

Fantazia is the record label that produces the House Collection c ompilation albums that feature further saucily clad women on the cover and always get to No. 1 in the dance charts. The Lynx/Fantazia tie up will produce a 20,000 person party at the NEC, with all the Fantazia DJs and tunes and some ever so subtle Lynx branding on the fifth House Collection album.

Of course, the key to all this is adland's latest buzz phrase, the "advertising literate consumer". The ALC knows every trick in the advertiser's book and is desperately unimpressed if Soho creatives think they can just toss out a couple of pretty films and shift cartloads of gear on the back of it. ALCs want people to work hard for their attention and to realise that they know a can of Coca Cola isn't going to get them laid.

For Lynx, matters are further complicated by the rapidly expanding market for male deodorants. Last year, the total male scenty stuff market was larger than both the shampoo and the canned soup market, and it's all looking a bit threatening for the market leader and inventor of male deodorant in 1985. Lynx is fighting to stay top in the face of a sustained threat from the likes of CK1, Polo Sport and Insignia, despite having its scents crafted by the same fragrance house as all the Klein products.

"We need to prove to the consumers that we understand them and we are prepared to give them something back for their support for that,"says Kanter. "That's why we are working with Fantazia. The youth aren't impressed if you just tag along with something, you have to prove you are committed to it."

Will it work? Mark Ratcliffe, who heads up adland's leading youth consultancy, Murmur, is not sure. "What young people want is for commercial companies like Lynx to provide something that was not already there," he says. "It's no good just putting up posters in a club. That becomes wallpaper. If the Lynx idea is to succeed, Bar Inca will have to offer something really good and very different."

Stephen Armstrong

Barn owls are among species that could be affected
charity appeal
Sarah Silverman (middle) with sister Reform Rabbi Susan Silverman (right) and sister actress Laura Silverman (left) at Jerusalem's Western Wall for feminist Hanuka candle-lighting ceremony
peopleControversial comedian stages pro-equality Hanukkah lighting during a protest at Jerusalem's Wailing Wall
Arts and Entertainment
The Bach Choir has been crowned the inaugural winner of Sky Arts’ show The Great Culture Quiz
arts + ents140-year-old choir declared winner of Sky Arts' 'The Great Culture Quiz'
After another poor series in Sri Lanka, Alastair Cook claimed all players go through a lean period
cricketEoin Morgan reportedly to take over ODI captaincy
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Life and Style
ebookNow available in paperback
Life and Style
ebooksA superb mix of recipes serving up the freshest of local produce in a delicious range of styles
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

ES Rentals

    iJobs Job Widget
    iJobs General

    Recruitment Genius: Finance Director

    £65000 - £80000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Finance Director required to jo...

    Recruitment Genius: Medico-Legal Assistant

    £15000 - £25000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is a unique opportunity fo...

    Ashdown Group: (PHP / Python) - Global Media firm

    £50000 per annum + 26 days holiday,pension: Ashdown Group: A highly successful...

    The Jenrick Group: Quality Inspector

    £27000 per annum + pension + holidays: The Jenrick Group: A Quality Technician...

    Day In a Page

    Homeless Veterans appeal: 'You look for someone who's an inspiration and try to be like them'

    Homeless Veterans appeal

    In 2010, Sgt Gary Jamieson stepped on an IED in Afghanistan and lost his legs and an arm. He reveals what, and who, helped him to make a remarkable recovery
    Could cannabis oil reverse the effects of cancer?

    Could cannabis oil reverse effects of cancer?

    As a film following six patients receiving the controversial treatment is released, Kate Hilpern uncovers a very slippery issue
    The Interview movie review: You can't see Seth Rogen and James Franco's Kim Jong Un assassination film, but you can read about it here

    The Interview movie review

    You can't see Seth Rogen and James Franco's Kim Jong Un assassination film, but you can read about it here
    Serial mania has propelled podcasts into the cultural mainstream

    How podcasts became mainstream

    People have consumed gripping armchair investigation Serial with a relish typically reserved for box-set binges
    Jesus Christ has become an unlikely pin-up for hipster marketing companies

    Jesus Christ has become an unlikely pin-up

    Kevin Lee Light, aka "Jesus", is the newest client of creative agency Mother while rival agency Anomaly has launched Sexy Jesus, depicting the Messiah in a series of Athena-style poses
    Rosetta space mission voted most important scientific breakthrough of 2014

    A memorable year for science – if not for mice

    The most important scientific breakthroughs of 2014
    Christmas cocktails to make you merry: From eggnog to Brown Betty and Rum Bumpo

    Christmas cocktails to make you merry

    Mulled wine is an essential seasonal treat. But now drinkers are rediscovering other traditional festive tipples. Angela Clutton raises a glass to Christmas cocktails
    5 best activity trackers

    Fitness technology: 5 best activity trackers

    Up the ante in your regimen and change the habits of a lifetime with this wearable tech
    Paul Scholes column: It's a little-known fact, but I have played one of the seven dwarves

    Paul Scholes column

    It's a little-known fact, but I have played one of the seven dwarves
    Fifa's travelling circus once again steals limelight from real stars

    Fifa's travelling circus once again steals limelight from real stars

    Club World Cup kicked into the long grass by the continued farce surrounding Blatter, Garcia, Russia and Qatar
    Frank Warren column: 2014 – boxing is back and winning new fans

    Frank Warren: Boxing is back and winning new fans

    2014 proves it's now one of sport's biggest hitters again
    Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton: The power dynamics of the two first families

    Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton

    Karen Tumulty explores the power dynamics of the two first families
    Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley with a hotbed of technology start-ups

    Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley

    The Swedish capital is home to two of the most popular video games in the world, as well as thousands of technology start-ups worth hundreds of millions of pounds – and it's all happened since 2009
    Did Japanese workers really get their symbols mixed up and display Santa on a crucifix?

    Crucified Santa: Urban myth refuses to die

    The story goes that Japanese store workers created a life-size effigy of a smiling "Father Kurisumasu" attached to a facsimile of Our Lord's final instrument of torture
    Jennifer Saunders and Kate Moss join David Walliams on set for TV adaptation of The Boy in the Dress

    The Boy in the Dress: On set with the stars

    Walliams' story about a boy who goes to school in a dress will be shown this Christmas