TOGA! AIMS FOR FUN-LOVING BEVERAGE CREW

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The $1.1 billion iced tea and fruit juice market is showing signs of congestion. Ask Snapple Beverage Corp., whose stock took a 26% dive within hours of this month's announcement that second-quarter income rose just 56%.

Already feeling the pinch from big marketing spenders such as Pepsi-Lipton Tea Partnership's Lipton Original and Coca-Cola Co.'s Fruitopia, Snapple also is being squeezed from below by a host of wanna-bes.

Among the latest: Saratoga Spring Water Co.'s Toga!, packaged in 16- and 22-ounce long-neck glass bottles sporting colorful comic book-style labels.

Five flavors, available since June in New York, New Jersey, Philadelphia, Washington and Boston, expand to Atlanta, California, and Florida in coming months and go national by June 1995.

The Team Toga! product, like other newcomers including Ferolito, Vultaggio & Sons' Arizona, eschews traditional advertising. It depends instead on a $500,000 marketing effort including sampling, promotional events and word-of-mouth to target the urban and college markets. Rubenstein Public Relations, New York, has handled event publicity.

"We wanted a product that was fun," said Saratoga Spring Water President Robin Prever. "... I was a big comic fan and I liked the idea of the cartoons."

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