How Febreze Became a Billion Dollar Brand

On August 1st, 2023 I’ll be launching my most ambitious project in more than 5 years. I’ll be working with 30 clients to grow a social following, build an email list and sell a digital product they create.

Jason Stapleton
Scottsdale, AZ
Wednesday, 7:12 a.m.

Hello again my friend,

In 1997 Procter & Gamble had a problem.

They’d spent millions on a colorless, odorless liquid that could kill any unpleasant smell instantly. They called it Febreze.

It was a miracle product. One they thought would make them billions. There was just one problem.

No one would buy it.

Their marketing strategy centered around the idea of “getting bad smells out of fabrics”.

They thought, “No one enjoys the smell of a dozen house cats or a pack-a-day smoker. Surely someone would pay a few dollars to remove those smells forever. Right?”


It turns out, heavy smokers and creepy cat people can’t smell the offensive odors they create. They become desensitized to it.

In an effort to get the brand back on track, P&G hired behavioral experts to try and find a way to sell the product.

After numerous interviews and house visits, they made two big changes.

  1. They added a pleasant smell to the spray.
  2. They rebranded it as the final step in the cleaning process.

Today Fabreze is a billion-dollar brand for P&G.

So why did it work? That is the subject of today’s letter.


The Two Main Drivers of Human Action

We do things for primarily two reasons.

  1. Social copying – We do what others do and want what others want.

That’s because of a fancy behavioral principle called memetic desire. If other people find something valuable or desirable, we tend to feel the same way.

Most people have a desire to fit in. Even in an age where everyone is trying to get Insta famous, most of them still end up looking and sounding like everyone else.

  1. Habit – We do what we’ve always done.

I’ve written at length about the laziness of the human brain. We don’t like to think. It’s calorically expensive. So we develop habits.

It’s estimated that 90% of our daily activity is habit not deliberate. We are a species that runs on autopilot unless some external force knocks us into conscious reality.


How Febreze Messed With Your Mind and Made Billions

By shifting their marketing strategy from “Eliminate bad odors” to “Finish with Febreze”. The company was able to make using the product part of your routine. (Habit)

And by adding a pleasant smell to the spray it offered an instant payoff, incentivizing people to use it every day.

As more people began to purchase Fabreze and made using it a habit, sales grew from sheer social copying.


How You Can Use Social Copying and Habit In Your Business

The more you can integrate your product into someones existing routine, the more people will use it.

If you’re a coach, consultant, or course creator you know the biggest problem with getting results for your clients is implementation.

Most people don’t do the work.

If you want more people to finish your course or execute the plan you put together; find ways to make progress habitual.

Here how I do it:

I have a specific daily routine that involves a combination of open blocks of time and focus blocks. I teach this routine to my clients and have them design a similar one for themselves.

Many of my clients work full time while building their businesses on the side. I take special care to make sure the work I’m having them do will fit into the 1-3 hours of focus time they have each day.

This combination allows my clients to fold the work we’re doing into their daily routines. That means more people getting results.

More results mean more testimonials and more testimonials lead to more sales. (Social Copying)

So here’s your mission; grab a sheet of paper and list out the ways you could make your product easier to use by integrating it into your client’s daily routine.

Have a podcast? Release it every Monday at 3am and start using the slogan, “The Perfect Partner for Your Monday Morning Commute”.

Own a gym? Want to encourage everyone to stick to their nutrition plan?

Make a game out of taking a picture of your plate each day and posting it to a group chat. Make it a competition. Offer a prize to the person who’s most consistent each month.

Do you think that would improve the results your clients get?

Sell adventure apparel? Want to get more buzz going for your brand?

Start taking pictures of yourself hiking, fishing, or skydiving in your gear. Then encourage your core following to do the same by sharing and reposting them to your social media.

Do giveaways to the best photo of the month. I guarantee you’ll get people doing some crazy adventure shit in your clothes.

You’re only limited by your imagination.

So shut off the phone, disconnect from the computer, grab a buddy, and start spitballing ideas.

Oh, and if you want me to brainstorm with you, we meet every Tuesday from 9-11 Pacific.

Talk soon,


If you enjoyed this newsletter there are 2 ways I can help you:

1. If you’re looking to start or grow your business and you’re making less than $100k/yr, I’d recommend joining my .

The LEVERAGE Coaching Group was created to help solopreneurs and entrepreneurs grow a six-figure business. One that provides both financial freedom and income mobility.

We do this in 3 ways:

  1. On-Demand Training on Sales, Marketing & Brand Development.
  2. Monthly LIVE Coaching Sessions where I do a ‘deep dive’ on the marketing & sales strategies that are working NOW.
  3. Weekly “Office Hours” with no agenda other than helping you implement your growth plan.

It’s a unique coaching program, unlike anything you’ve ever seen before.

2. If you have a successful business but you’re feeling burned out and frustrated then it’s time to start building the systems into your business that will free you from the day-to-day grind: check out my

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