MECCA-COLA: A MESSAGE IN A BOTTLE
There is no denying that Mecca-Cola is a political product. Commercially, it's capitalizing on the growing anti-American sentiment. The interesting part, which probably no one has ever done before, is the fact that the founder is making a political statement as well as embracing others with the same attitude through a consumer product. At some level it looks ironic that an anti-American movement takes form in the very byproduct of American culture; however, this is also saying that not all about America is bad. It's not the culture that is being fought, but rather the politics. And Mecca-Cola fights by trying to provide conscience to its consumers, to provide meaning in consumerism ("buvez engagé").
Mecca-Cola was born as a reaction to the anti-American sentiments, and it primarily appeals to consumers who support American brands boycott campaign. Entry consumers are primarily Muslims, with the product first being distributed in "small ethnic shops in Muslim areas". While Mecca-Cola may continue to appeal to Muslim consumers, its policy to give profits for charity may appeal to other "engaged consumers".
By positioning itself as the non-American alternative of a cola, Mecca-Cola directly challenged Coca-Cola and Pepsi as the "American products". However, as in Mathlouthi idealism, Mecca-Cola will keep the focus on providing an alternative cola drinks, not directly challenge those big players as competitors. Now that Mecca-Cola has successfully initiated a new segment of "alternative cola", its real competitors are the other alternative cola that position themselves as a product for Muslims while also offering corporate social responsibility like Mecca Cola. Among the major competitors are ZamZam Cola, Qibla-Cola, Muslim Up and Arab Cola.
The launch of Mecca-Cola was a success, perhaps because it is providing a fresh alternative to common consumerism, while using political and social charity leveraging advantages....
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