Rick Wasserman, John Bleeden and Todd Durston , the co-founders of Archer Air Superiority, got tired of all air fresheners smelling girlie. These three ad guys realized there was a hole in the marketplace and decided to create niche products that would appeal to men.
After joking about the possibility for six weeks, they launched their company in 10 months. This resulted in air fresheners with names that would catch a male’s eye such as: European Sports Car, Distillery and Hunting Lodge. Their tag line is: “It may not be a man’s world, but it can smell like one.”
Each entrepreneur invested $6000 of their own money. They worked with Belle Air Fragrances Inc. of Mundelein, Illinois; chemists there helped develop the scents for European Sports Car and Hunting Lodge.
Being creative, the men designed the containers themselves and got their website up and ready for commerce. They did research looking for stores across the country with an upscale clientele and reached out to bloggers who could promote their products. A warehouse and fulfilment center fills the web orders and sends products to almost 60 retailers wanting their products. Market sales have topped $100,000. The air freshener market is a $1.5 billion industry.
Their advice? : “Look and see where there are holes in the marketplace If you’re selling on the Internet, you must have eye-catching packaging. Because consumers can’t smell our product, and it’s upscale ($14 per 8-ounce can- versus a typical $3 freshener-we have to motivate men to buy our product,” says Bleeden.
This past September, the men launched a premium liquid soap named Dish Whisky. Have the scent of Distillery, it comes in a 16-ounce pilot flask.