You see what happens? You write something nice about another blogger and they ask you what you think about Smellovision. Sue Pelletier sent me an email referring to her recent blog entry covering the use of scents as a way to engage and/or influence your audience.
If I could get the technology to smell-o-vise my webinars to enhance concentration and learning, would I? Not a chance.
Smells are tricky things. Ever notice how many perfumes are on the market? Don't you think if there was one that had a universal effect it would have long ago edged out all competition? Ever worked with someone who used WAY too much cologne or perfume? Why aren't they bothered by it? Why do some cultures cover up the smell of sweat while others view it as perfectly natural and acceptable?
Manipulating your audience's senses is a very difficult business. I spent five years of my professional career as a tour director/tour guide. I'd be on a bus for one to three weeks with a varied group of tourists. Do you think they ever universally agreed on the comfort of the temperature, microphone volume levels, light levels, or amount of talking vs. silence? Not hardly. I can't imagine trying to pump the bus full of a scent that a researcher somewhere had decided was beneficial. The people near the distribution outlets would be overwhelmed, those far from them would be unaffected. The introduced odors would mingle with the other odors already in the room to form an entirely new mix (I wonder how much the smellovision movie researchers studied the effect of their scents when combined with the overwhelming aromas of buttered and/or burnt popcorn?).
Call me a stick-in-the-mud traditionalist, but I'd far prefer to win over my audience with quality content, well-planned pacing, and stimulating presentation skills.