Human Centered Innovation: CLOROX SCENTIVA


Human Centered Innovation: Clorox Scentiva

In our quest to learn from companies who have delivered consumer centered innovation, Tic Tac Toe innovation recently talked to Clorox Co. Innovation Discovery Vice President, Miranda Helmer  about one of the largest company success stories, Clorox Scentiva.

Clorox Scentiva, transformed the cleaning experience from being a tedious job to being a moment of joy and delight. If you want to see your adolescent child happily cleaning the house while enjoying the moment, you should empower him/her with Clorox Scentiva Pacific Breezed!

The Clorox Scentiva line up was developed and launched by the Clorox Co. back in 2017.  Let’s add a bit of historical context to the years before the development and launch of Clorox Scentiva.  The US had gone through challenging years including the labor market facing difficulties and impacting consumer sentiment. How did this affect the cleaning category? That is the wrong question for an innovator mindset. A better question is how did it affect the consumer? Even better is the question the Clorox team formulated: how is this affecting the human behind the consumer?

They went outside the category and fully experienced the consumer sentiment and trends of the moment. They did this, not within the cleaning category but within the entire context of the consumer life – a 360 approach. They partnered with trend expert houses to understand the trends of the moment in all aspects of consumer life. They learned the struggles people were facing after several years of economic challenges and they realized how much consumers were looking for an outlet, for a moment of joy, for a moment of delight. Fragrances, including the air category, were booming.

Clorox Scentiva was created to challenge and elevate the everyday cleaning experience. Combining the trusted cleaning and disinfecting power of Clorox with well-crafted, curated and inviting scent blends,  Clorox Scentiva was created to  transform consumers home with a total sensorial clean.

The development team had a very clear design criteria: develop a product that transports the consumer to a moment of joy – a Pacific breeze, a Tuscan landscape or a Tahitian grapefruit splash. .  They learned that there were better fragrance and color versions, preferred by consumers but they were bold and went with the fragrance that better communicated the “full delightful experience” that guided their design criteria.

Previous tests had shown the selected fragrance had a lower absolute fragrance preference, but the selected fragrance communicated best a day in the beach or a day among Tuscan jasmines and a grapefruit splash. This was the objective, to sensorially bring consumers to a place of joy. In order to deliver the full experience and transport consumers the team of developers with the fragrance experts applied neuroscience to connect the different fragrance undertones with the desired experience. The final decision was made by the lead developer even when some of the team members preferred to go with a fragrance (and color) that had showed a higher absolute score but lesser connection to the total experience.

The team also considered other packages, a package that would connect better with the places consumers were being transported to but it jeopardized the connection to cleaning and disinfection. It was important to simplify the consumer choice at the shelf (what P&G calls First Moment of Truth) and in few seconds they had to communicate a moment of joy with strong cleaning and disinfection performance. They decided to keep the Clorox iconic spray package.

It is important to mention that in order to enable big thinking and the fast progress of the initiative, a team with the best innovators was created – The Cleaning New Business Leadership Team. The objective? To look for new spaces for Clorox to delight consumers and innovate. Not having to be pulled by the day to day of the category enabled this team to think outside the box and progress the initiative with speed and the needed depth.

The clarity on the design performance criteria, focus on the consumer and engagement of the team members to deliver the best option made this process smooth and successful. Kudos to Clorox for a job well done!

Looking forward to seeing more delightful experiences!


Diana Escoda and Mabe Rodríguez – Tic Tac Toe Innovación