Simply Spiked Lemonade builds on word-of-mouth buzz with paid marketing push

    • Simply Spiked Lemonade, a collaboration between Molson Coors Beverage Company and The Coca-Cola Company, is rolling out a paid marketing campaign following a successful launch in June, per a press release.

    • Titled “It’s Getting Juicy,” the effort is made up of six- and 15-second advertisements that will air across, social, TV, digital, audio and out-of-home (OOH) channels in select markets. The concept plays off of The Coca-Cola brand’s 21st anniversary and its alignment with the legal drinking age in the U.S.

    • The spiked lemonade marks the latest addition in Coca-Cola and Molson Coors’s spiked drink strategy, with previous partnerships including Topo Chico Hard Seltzer and Fresca Mixed. A heavier paid media play could support momentum that Simply Spiked Lemonade has generated organically online and through word-of-mouth. 

    Though it’s only been on the market for a few weeks, Simply Spiked Lemonade has already sold over 6 million cans and earned a noteworthy portion of dollar share in the flavored malt beverage segment, according to IRI data cited by Molson Coors. The fledgling beverage also generated 2 billion media impressions based on social and earned media chatter, a Molson Coors executive said.

    Now, the brewing giant and Coke are looking to fortify their latest collaboration’s position with a paid media campaign that riffs on the Simply brand turning 21, which could appeal to young consumers who are also entering legal drinking age and may have grown up with the marketer’s non-alcoholic juices. A video spot tied to the push shows a humanoid made of a bunch of lemons doing a happy dance as it walks into a bar, while OOH placements are more product-focused. 

    Molson Coors noted it’s dedicating additional resources to Simply Spiked Lemonade beyond marketing as it chases its next hit. Two new production facilities will help get the beverage to market. 

    “We’re ramping up supply to keep up with excitement around the brand, and the supply chain moved mountains to ensure we can handle more production and are ready for the future,” said Joy Ghosh, vice president of marketing for above-premium brands and flavored malt beverages at Molson Coors, in a statement. 

    Hard alternatives to popular drinks, such as Simply, might be the key to millennial and Gen Z hearts and wallets. Partnerships between alcohol companies and beverage brands like Coca-Cola allow for the development of instantly identifiable and nostalgia-filled products — now including alcohol. Simply is the most popular refrigerated lemonade brand in the U.S. 

    Hard seltzer, once the darling of the adult beverage industry, has begun to lose some of its fizz. Slumping sales and over-saturation have business leaders worried for the young industry. Molson Coors discontinued its own Coors Light Seltzer not even a year into its production, choosing to focus on other offerings. Attempts to pivot and diversify have become a top priority as young consumers seek alternatives.

    For Molson Coors, co-branded drinks seem to be a success. In addition to the partnerships with Coca-Cola, the company has teamed up with Hornell Brewing Co. to release a line of spiked Arizona Iced Tea across Canada.


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