Irish Spring is leaning into the stereotype that gamers can sometimes ignore their personal hygiene in the drive to win a match or beat a boss during a play session.
The Nice-Smelling Gaming Shower was first teased on April 1, suggesting a potential April Fools’ stunt, but the elaborate device is real, albeit not widely accessible. With the concept, Irish Spring stated it is attempting to “save noses from the tyranny of gamer funk.”
Rather than open an in-person activation, the soap marketer is relying on the reach of a member of FaZe Clan, one of the leading esports brands. FaZe Santana’s stream of his visit to the pod included a tour of the terrarium space and the creator sitting down to bathe in the device, which acts more like a Jacuzzi than a traditional shower. The broadcast had generated over 259,000 views at press time and Irish Spring plans to release a more in-depth video with FaZe Santana on April 29 for National Sense of Smell Day.
The campaign aligns with Irish Spring’s broader mission of “helping guys smell from a nice-smelling place,” with a particular focus on reaching Gen Z and millennials. The release cited a Facebook survey conducted by Chillblast that revealed one in five gamers admitted to skipping a shower so they wouldn’t have to take a break from playing.
Irish Spring has enacted a more ambitious consumer-facing strategy this year. It ran its first Super Bowl ad in February. “Welcome to Irish Spring” similarly depicted an idyllic version of Irish spring, with a creepy twist recalling the cults in movies like “The Wicker Man” and “Midsommar.”
Marketing targeted at gamers has become common among non-endemic brands as more consumers pick up a controller, though many strategies are still early days. In April, the Interactive Advertising Bureau held the inaugural PlayFronts, the first media upfront dedicated to gaming. A major theme was how brands often misconstrue the gaming audience as limited to young men who spend their time locked away in basements. About half of gamers in the US are now women.