But the bubbly version apparently failed to generate a sales
splash because PepsiCo is in the process of discontinuing it.
Aquafina will still sell a non-carbonated FlavorSplash version, but
the packaging (at left) is being changed to look more like regular
Aquafina. The core target for regular Aquafina and non-carbonated
FlavorSplash are adults in Generation X.
Aquafina is "known for a certain tonality. The minute we stray
too far away from what our core is … consumers can see it,"
said Rishi Daing, PepsiCo's VP for water portfolio, innovation and
emerging brands. "We don't want to be something that we are not,"
he added. "We are excited to be going back to what consumers want
to see from us," but with a "fresh new take."
The new campaign includes a TV spot (above) by Mekanism that features people running,
smiling and dancing in a park, Aquafina in hand. The campaign is
"not about the functional benefits of what water does for you," Mr.
Daing said. Rather, "it is about what you can do with your body,
what it makes you feel, after you've had [Aquafina]," he said.
He declined to reveal media spending plans. PepsiCo spent $13
million in measured media on Aquafina last year, but that included
$9.3 million on Aquafina FlavorSplash, according to Kantar
The previous campaign for regular Aquafina, which ran from 2006
to 2008, was called "Make Your Body Happy" and used a similar
"We focused on the benefits of water at that time. It was about
making your body happy," Mr. Daing said. "This time we are talking
about making your life happier: It's for people that have happy
Sales volume of unflavored, still bottled water grew 7.9% in
2014, according to Beverage Digest. The top brand is Nestle Pure Life, which has
15.9% share and grew 8.7% last year. Second-ranked Dasani, which is
owned by Coca-Cola, grew 7%. Aquafina is in fourth place with 8.6%
share after growing 7.5%.
"Bottled water has been the beneficiary in large part of the
disaffection with carbonated soft drinks," said John Sicher, editor
and publisher of Beverage Digest. "People view bottled water as
healthy. They view it as pure. It has no calories." As a result,
"bottled water has become a very big category and very important to
the U.S. beverage business."
But the category has drawn negative attention in recent days as
Niagara Bottling voluntarily recalled some of its water after E.
coli was discovered at a spring source. Brands affected by the
recall include Wegmans Spring Water, Shoprite Spring Water, Acadia
Spring Water and others.
Still, Mr. Sicher said "I don't see this affecting the
bottled-water business in any large way." Niagara "did a very good
job of being proactive," he said, adding that the beverage industry
"in general is trusted by consumers in terms of product