Mercedes Man – star brand extension or stinker?

Mercedes brand extension

Mercedes has followed a number of fashion brands and celebrities who have tried to leverage their status to create a brand fragrance.

Their new range of fragrances are now available at Chemist Warehouse but is this good for the Mercedes brand?

For many premium fashion brands, creating a line of fragrance is a smart brand extension. It adds another product line to their accessories and can also introduce more people to the brand. Essentially, despite charging a premium for the fragrance, it gives access to more people to wear the brand, even if they cannot afford to wear the clothes.

But does the same theory work for a premium car brand?

Like any brand extension, creating a fragrance needs to be carefully considered based on extra value the new product (in this case fragrance) can generate but also the potential damage it could do to the brand.

Creating a Mercedes fragrance is not necessarily a bad idea. While very few people would want to walk around smelling like a new car, Mercedes does have the opportunity to capture a scent that represents an aspirational lifestyle – one that their brand is known for.

However, I am struggling to see the brand benefit in the way the fragrance has been executed and distributed.

Mercedes is a premium European brand driven by an ethos of ‘The best or nothing’. For years their collection of “extensive product range including watches, accessories, fashion, travel and gift ideas” has been designed to create a lifestyle beyond the car. In their catalogue they describe the range as, “made with passion and attention to detail” and “capturing the allure of the Mercedes-Benz brand.”

Mercedes brand extension

When you look at Mercedes Man product, packaging and even price point, this certainly doesn’t fit with the ‘Collection’ range or the Mercedes brand values. Being sold at Chemist Warehouse (or any discount chemist) also doesn’t feel in keeping with the ideal brand experience.

What do you think – is the Mercedes Man fragrance range sold at Chemist Warehouse good or bad for the Mercedes brand?

Michael Hughes

Michael is Managing Partner and Strategy Director at Truly Deeply, a brand agency with 25 years’ experience working with brands to position them for growth. His deep expertise is in unlocking the strategic power of your brand to create a differentiated, compelling and authentic brand proposition that will engage all your audiences. Michael has extensive experience working across Australia and the Middle East working with leading Australian and International organisations across just about every sector.

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