Tuesday, 22 July 2008

New Adventures in Shitful Marketing

Everyone knew Coca Cola's "Mother" was a financial disaster waiting to happen. Now I'm not just bitter because they replaced Sprite Recharge which was basically heroin to me, but surely everyone could see that something which tasted like creeping death and had a god-awful name (What the fuck is "Mother" supposed to do for me? Make my lunch?) was going to be the biggest bomb since World War 2 in an energy department dominated by Red Bull and V.

Even a year ago there were reports that the whole brand was going tits up and costing Coke a fortune, but at the time they were being bold and claiming that nothing was wrong.

Coca-Cola says it is not looking at reformulating the product and will be relying on its marketing muscle to change consumers' attitudes.

Yesterday Coca-Cola Amatil, the principal Coca-Cola licensee in Australia, said the results were "fantastic", citing 84 per cent awareness of the brand, a growth in the overall market since its entry and the fact that its market share was more than twice that of the brand it replaced, Sprite Recharge.

Twice the market share. A quarter the taste. Anyway, a year later and further financial bleeding and they've finally pulled the pin. But instead of realising that they cocked up and coming up with something new they've gone for a "wacky" relaunching strategy that has got farce written all over it.

Coca-Cola Australia has kicked off its relaunch of energy drink Mother this month

Spearheaded by a new TVC, the ad pokes fun at the old formulation, seeing a SWAT team hunting down those responsible for the original – and unsuccessful - Mother formulation.

The can even says "Tastes nothing like the original". So, what you're basically saying to me is that you've got no idea what you're doing and that the last product that your intelligent boffins created tasted like cats piss. Why, then am I buying your fancy new product? I fail to understand just why you would keep the same name as a failed product and admit that it was a cock-up. There's a meeting I would have loved to have sat in on. I guess their excuse is that they already have 'brand awareness', but at the same time if that's people being aware that your product is utter balls.

Energy drink fans - you decide.

P.S - This post will amazingly disappear should the product go absolutely nuts and become the fastest selling corporate item since the Tickle Me Elmo. Don't hold your breath.

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