The tendency to match different sensory modalities together can be beneficial for marketing. Here we assessed the effect of sound–odor congruence on people’s attitude and memory for products of a familiar and unfamiliar brand. Participants smelled high- and low-arousal odors and then saw an advertisement for a product of a familiar or unfamiliar brand, paired with a high- or low-arousal jingle. Participants’ attitude towards the advertisement, the advertised product, and the product’s brand was measured, as well as memory for the product. In general, no sound–odor congruence effect was found on attitude, irrespective of brand familiarity. However, congruence was found to affect recognition: when a high-arousal odor and a high-arousal sound were combined, participants recognized products faster than in the other conditions. In addition, familiar brands were recognized faster than unfamiliar brands, but only when sound or odor arousal was high. This study provides insight into the possible applications of sound–odor congruence for marketing by demonstrating its potential to influence product memory.
When we imagine objects or events, we often engage in multisensory mental imagery. Yet, investigations of mental imagery have typically focused on only one sensory modality — vision. One reason for this is that the most common tool for the measurement of imagery, the questionnaire, has been restricted to unimodal ratings of the object. We present a new mental imagery questionnaire that measures multisensory imagery. Specifically, the newly developed Vividness of Wine Imagery Questionnaire (VWIQ) measures mental imagery of wine in the visual, olfactory, and gustatory modalities. Wine is an ideal domain to explore multisensory imagery because wine drinking is a multisensory experience, it involves the neglected chemical senses (smell and taste), and provides the opportunity to explore the effect of experience and expertise on imagery (from wine novices to experts). The VWIQ questionnaire showed high internal consistency and reliability, and correlated with other validated measures of imagery. Overall, the VWIQ may serve as a useful tool to explore mental imagery for researchers, as well as individuals in the wine industry during sommelier training and evaluation of wine professionals.