Lucozade launches low sugar variant to appeal to older drinkers

Lucozade is launching a low sugar variant to target heath conscious older consumers as it boosts its NPD outlay to widen the appeal of a sports and energy category in sharp decline.


The cloudy lemonade Lucozade Energy variant aims to attract 25 to 34-year olds to the category by containing 50 per cent less sugars than regular soft drinks, claims Lucozade. Families with young adults are also being targeted through a £1.8m campaign spanning outdoor, digital and in-store trumpeting the drink’s health credentials in October.

The outdoor ads will push the drink’s reduced sugar levels as the digital activity, which includes localised texts, will promote the consumption occasion and dial up its taste.

The cloudy lemonade variant is part of a wider marketing drive for the business that combines new products with a revamped strategy to kickstart slowing sales for the category. While Lucozade volume sales have steadily grown since 2011, the wider sports and energy drinks sector is predicted to see value sales drop from £240m to £146m by 2018, according to Euomonitor (see box).

Findings from the latest Britvic Soft Drinks Report found Lucozade and Red Bull to be the brands driving the total grocery and convenience sector in the 52 weeks to 26 December, when value sales jumped 7 per cent.

Corrine Hopwood, Lucozade marketing director says NPD is one of the main growth drivers of the soft drinks category.

Consumer attitudes toward fizzy drinks are tipped to flag as more opt for healthier drinks. Mintel research released last week (31 July) found  that one in four (25%) consumers are drinking fewer carbonated soft drinks than they were six months ago and half of those are doing so because they believe the products contain too much sugar.

Hopwood adds: “New product development is one of the main growth drivers for the soft drinks category and by listening and responding to shopper behaviour and consumer needs, we are able to develop strong-performing and popular products. With this new proposition, we are also helping to retain shoppers within the Energy segment.”

The launch comes as fizzy drinks face tougher regulations from the Government over concerns, heightened by lobby groups, that not enough has been done to curb the nation’s obesity problems. Coke launched Coca-Cola Life in June, its first new variant in the region for eight years, as part of its wider push to be part of more balanced lifestyles.

Sports and Energy drink market share breakdown (off-trade volumes): data provided Euromonitor

Brand 2011 2012 2013
Lucozade 59.8 64.4 64.3
Powerade 14.6 14.7 15.0
Gatorade 2.6 2.9 2.9
Isostar 0.7 0.7 0.7
Slazenger S1 0.2 0.1 0.1
Private label 4.8 5.2 5.0
Others 17.2 12.0 12.0

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