Amélie Jabban, Project Manager, needed belief and perseverance to launch her family brand. “At first, we got turned down by several French distributors, but we also had a mixed reception from the press,” she recalls. But where did that relative scorn come from? The brand actually highlighted its own difference! As it adopted almost none of the niche perfumery codes, Alexandre. J did not fit in any category and remained on the fringe of the selective and niche perfume segments.
Sophisticated, rich, and accessible
The concept developed by Alexandre. J – named after the brand’s creator and founder – is based on the combination of radical decisions and preferences.
On the one hand, the brand has a very assertive visual identity expressed by sophisticated packaging with a strong added value: the coloured, decorated bottles are designed by Alexandre J. himself, ornamented with noble materials like mother-of-pearl, glass paste, or pearls, and presented in a hand-designed leather box well-adapted to gifts.
On the other hand, it offers olfactory creations with a strong personality, designed with the help of the new generation of perfumers, like the Flair workshop. “It is essential for us to work with young independent perfumers. There is a crucial close relationship that helps create juices at the core of the creation process. They are good listeners and do not try to develop a commercial relationship between us,” Amélie Jabban emphasizes. Formulated with no compromise on the quality and choice of ingredients, the compositions are all eaux de parfum and express the main note first. “Our specificity is to bank on the top note so that consumers understand the perfume at once. The first impression is the right one, the one that remains even if the perfume changes,” she adds.
This olfactory path makes the least-informed consumers more daring, and these luxury perfumes are more easily accessible than most in this category: the low-end products of the Collector collection are available for 95 euros for a 100ml bottle.
So, the advantage for Alexandre. J seems to be to help niche perfumery reach a broader public. And despite estimations, the brand actually seems to be finding its own place and public.
The brand is distributed in 37 countries and 1,000 points of sale, including about ten in France, where the concept is getting more popular. “Things work very well in most points of sale in Paris and across France. Forty-five items were sold at Jovoy’s last month. We are part of a flow, that of democratized niche perfumery, and we target all types of customers with all budgets,” Amélie Jabban comments.
The Black Musks bestseller is the same on all markets, but the Project Manager explains she listens to every country’s desires and specificities, and spends time in-store on all continents to understand customers, their expectations, and the words they want to hear. “Customers often do not know what they want, they buy because it is well-known, or they had a favourite fragrance from the beginning, or they want something different. We must help and support them with simple, accessible, catchy words. The negative estimations we had at the beginning actually reflect a lack of knowledge of French consumers,” Amélie Jabban concludes.