Beverage companies boost summer marketing

Throughout the summer months, several beverage companies have focused on innovative marketing strategies to keep their products top-of-mind with consumers. The Coca-Cola Co. is hiring a fourth spokesmodel for its Fanta brand of soft drinks, and both Starbucks and Anheuser-Busch InBev appeared on the Pandora iPad application advertising platform.

Fanta looks for fourth Fantana
The Coca-Cola Co.’s Fanta brand is searching for a fourth Fantana, a group of spokesmodels that the company calls its “ambassadors of fun,” with an open casting call. Candidates can upload a one-minute audition video to to become the next Fanta Pineapple, replacing Lily, who is leaving the group. Applicants used the videos to showcase singing and dancing skills and explain why they would be the best Fantana, and Fanta fans voted for their favorite candidate on throughout July.  

SoBe and CollegeHumor partner
PepsiCo Inc.’s SoBe brand has partnered with CollegeHumor to create SoBe Studios, which will produce brand-relevant videos for television and the Internet. CollegeHumor has produced more than 1,000 original Web videos, and, in June, the companies premiered “Mr. Vicarious.” The three-part Web series focuses on the brand’s “re-skin” of its Elixir and Tea bottles featuring comedians Paul Scheer and Nick Kroll. The Mr. Vicarious series was shot at the South by Southwest festival in Austin, Texas.  

Drink with oneself
Stolichnaya Vodka is posing a question with its latest advertising campaign, “Would you have a drink with you?” The advertising campaign features celebrities, such as Playboy magazine creator Hugh Hefner, in both print and television ads in 15- and 30-second spots, which began in May. In the commercials, Hefner has a drink with himself at the Playboy Mansion’s bar. The company also will release a limited-edition bottle of Stoli Ohranj with the Playboy bunny logo in October.

Pandora advertisements
Two beverage giants were among the first brands on the Pandora iPad application advertising platform. Starbucks, Seattle, and Belgium-based Anheuser Busch InBev’s Budweiser brand began advertising in June on the advertising platform by Pandora, which can hyper-target consumers by gender, age, location, the type of music they listen to and the time of day with streaming video, audio and direct response. Starbucks is advertising its however-you-want-it Frappuccino line through Pandora, which will let users build their drink before generating a radio station playlist to match their beverage taste. Pandora allows Budweiser and Bud Light Lime to interact with adult music fans as an exclusive festivals page sponsor.  

St. Pauli Girl poster chosen
Crown Imports LLC’s St. Pauli Girl, Chicago, revealed the winner of its first online vote to determine which promotional poster the company would use in 2010. The company displayed the posters, which feature spokesmodel Katarina Van Derham, on, where more than 92,000 people voted on the images. Van Derham will appear in the poster for the second straight year as she continues her stint as the company’s spokesmodel.

Juicy Juice sponsors soccer tournament
Nestlé Juicy Juice hosted its fourth junior soccer tournament, Copita Mundial Juicy Juice 2010, for about 2,000 children between the ages of five and 10 years old to promote healthy habits among Hispanics. The participants came from elite junior soccer leagues and represented their favorite World Cup soccer teams for the chance to win replica uniforms, medals and the Copita Mundial cup. The tournament, which featured soccer legends from several Latin American countries, began in New York in May and continued in Los Angeles last month.

Folio Wine sponsors art contest
Art students nationwide have the chance to create a signature wine label for Canvas wine bottles beginning in 2011 in the Canvas Artist Series Contest, sponsored by Hyatt Hotels & Resorts, Chicago, and Folio Wine Partners, a Napa Valley-based wine company. Qualified U.S. art students can submit an original piece of art showing characteristics of one of the three Canvas varieties – Cabernet Sauvignon, Chardonnay and Merlot – by Aug. 15 for a chance to win $5,000. The companies will choose a winner for each variety of wine, and the winning labels will be revealed on Canvas wine bottles in 2011.

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How beer brands are using social media to connect with consumers

Social media has become a buzzword for not just American consumers but also the business environment. Companies are turning to various social media channels to create brand awareness or possibly boost retail sales. Beer brands also are turning to social media to make their stories heard. Brand Chorus, a division of New York-based TippingGardner, conducted a Beer StoryScore Index for Beverage Industry. StoryScore is a quantitative measure of a brand’s storytelling through social management based on creativity, strategy and personality.

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