Introduction and Marketing Issues-
Dr Pepper/7Up Inc., is one of the largest soft drinks company in the world. This company has its production in 200 countries. Most popular soft drinks are: Dr Pepper, 7 UP, RC cola, A&W Root Beer, Canada dry, Hawaiian Punch, and Squirt.
Squirt, is a drink that was invented in the course of an experiment by Herb Bishop in 1938. It was a new carbonated soft drink that required less fruit and less sugar to produce hence it was quite famous during WWII. Later, in 1977, Squirt was bought by a bottler Holland Michigan. The company updated Squirt’s logo and positioned the brand as a mainstream soft drink. Squirt joined A&W Brands in 1986, which was later purchased by Cadbury Schweppes PLC in 1993. Responsibility for manufacturing, marketing, and distribution of Squirt was assigned to Dr Pepper/Seven Up, Inc, which had been acquired by Cadbury Schweppes PLC in 1995. It still remains under the Dr Pepper/Seven Up, Inc. branch. Nowadays, Squirt is bottled and sold by some 250 Bottlers in the US. Since 1990 Squirt’s unit sale volume has been stable until recently.
There is a huge volume of carbonated soft drink consumption in the US. American consumes 849 eight- ounce annually. CSD are popular among individuals aged 20 – 49. Consumption of diet drinks is popular at the age group of 25 and over. Today, Squirt’s product line consists of regular, diet, Ruby Red, and Diet Ruby Red. Diet Squirt and Diet Ruby Red account for 20% of Squirt’s total sales.
The study of Squirts sales volume has shown a slow decline in recent years, although squirt remains one of the best selling brands among citrus flavored drinks, still the competition due to better marketing budgets and techniques from the two main competitors Coca cola and Pepsi and changing market trends can bring the market share down for Squirt. The flat sales of Squirt need to be boosted before competing brands begin to erode the market share enjoyed by Squirt, therefore to safeguard against this Kate Cox, brand manager at Dr. Pepper/ seven up inc began to develop plan for market targeting and product positioning as prescribed by Foote, Cone and Belding that is brand’s advertisement agency. In the mid- summer 2001, Squirt Brand management team, had to begin drafting annual advertising and promotion plan for Squirt in the US to chart a right marketing plan the team had to come up with answers for the following questions: Q1: What should be Squirt’s target market? Or what target market to choose? (FCB recommendations) Q2: How should Squirt be positioned according to the target market? Q3. Is it beneficial to follow recommendation of Foote, Cone and Belding of targeting and positioning Squirt or should old methods be followed or there should be some new innovative methods to increase sales and promotion of Squirt?
Squirt has been advertised in all the mediums of media like newspapers, television, and radio. Although squirt remains one of the best selling brands among citrus flavored drinks, still the study of Squirts sales volume has shown a slow decline in recent years. The competition due to better marketing budgets and techniques from the two main competitors Coca cola and Pepsi and changing market trends can bring the market share down for Squirt.
Squirts advertising agency Foote, Cone and Belding suggested market targeting and brand positioning as two ways for Squirt to come out of this problem.
Following their suggestion and considering that the answers to the questions mentioned above will serve as main decision making tools we analyzed the market situation for Squirt.
Carbonated drink industry is highly competitive industry As mentioned previously this industry of carbonated drinks is dominated by three companies, Coca cola, Pepsi and Dr. Pepper/ 7 up inc These three companies also represent the top ten...