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Monster energy drink is marketed and distributed by Hansen Natural Corporation, and at the beginning, Hansen Natural Corporation was distributed by PepsiCo Canada on November 10, 1986, and then transferred the distribution to Coca-Cola Enterprises (just-drinks.com), Coca-Cola United, and other Coca-Cola bottlers in many markets. Contracts with current distributors were bought out in these markets. In 2010, Monster Energy will expand their market and release their products to other countries, in order to grow their business. For instance, in Germany, Pepsi is the Producer of Monster energy drink, and it is available there since Summer/Autumn 2010, also in Australia, Monster Energy drink is distributed by Schweppes as Coca-Cola Amatil manufactures Mother energy drink, which is an exclusive energy drink sold only in Australia and New Zealand. In addition, most companies spend their money on ad agencies, TV commercials, radio spots, and billboards to tell customers how good their products are, but Monster does not, they choose to support scene, bands, athletes and fans. Monster sponsors athletes so they can make a career out of their passion. Monster is way more than an energy drink. Led by our athletes, musicians, employees, distributors and fans, “Monster is… A lifestyle in a can.”(Monster,2009)
Section One – Brand campaign descriptors
1.1 Brand information
Monster energy drink is belonging of Hansen Natural Corporation manufactures natural including Hansen’s Natural Soda, Hansen’s Energy, Hansen’s Junior Juice, Peace Tea, and Blue Sky. The company is a leading natural soda brand in southern California for the past 30 years (Bowden, 2008). Hubert Hansen began selling fresh ,non pasteurized juices to film studios and retailers in Southern California under the Hansen’s name in 1930, developed and marketed a variety of Natural sodas and pasteurized shelf stable, 100 percent juices also under the Hansen’s label. Monster receives a large amount of recognition from its sponsorship of various sporting especially X sports events such skateboard competition.
1.2 Agencies associated with the campaign
The brand of Monster would be promoted through the whole campaign. In order to organize a successful brand campaign, several agencies in different areas would be used to associate the campaign. Firstly, Ogilvy & Mather Shanghai, a 4A company, would be used as the advertising agency to help the brand design all the advertising products which would publish to public such as posters on the streets, advertising in magazines and newspapers, TV commercials and products on social media to attract audiences. DUSHOW Shanghai branch exhibition services company is another agency that would be used in this campaign. DUSHOW is a company with the experience of helping REDBULL energy drink doing the similar campaign in Shanghai before. The company would help the company find the place for the event is going to be held.
1.3 Brief description of the campaign
Monster Company would run a street skating event to promote the brand image in Shanghai market. When mentioned sports especially X sports, people would think about passion and exciting. This fits to the brand image of Monster energy drink. This campaign would deliver the culture and information about the Monster Company and Monster energy drink. At the event, Monster would invite Greg Lutzka, who is one of the best skateboarder and sponsored by Monster, to the event to give fans a fantastic show. What the campaign wants to achieve is to increase the awareness of Monster energy drink in Shanghai market and try to build brand loyalty among regular customers.
This campaign of skateboard event would be held in the first two Saturday of July. In Shanghai, the summer holidays will begin in the first of July of 2011. Therefore, our target market would be available when the campaign is running. The campaign would run for three hours from 2:00 PM to 5:00 PM for both Saturdays. It would be super hot at that time in July. In that case, the brand image would be left in people’s mind very deep when they try the Monster product with icy cold in hot weather.
1.4 Visions of the campaign
Before the campaign is going to be held, the Monster would have advertising on sports newspapers and X sports magazines. Both of them would be the same vision expect the size. The advertising on magazine would be a full color page and it would be a half color page advertising on news paper. Also, Monster Energy drinks would use Internet to interact with customers and provide them with extra information about the campaign, be it through Monster Energy drinks’s official website or through social media such as social websites like of Facebook or Twitter, which are the most two popular social website among teenagers (Qualman, 2011). The reason why using social media as a tool of promotion the campaign is to achieve to teenagers or young couples (including people within the 15 – 40 years old cohort).
Finally, an official website notice vision of the campaign would be on the most clearly position of the website to make sure everyone can notice this information as they open the official webpage of Monster energy drink. The official website is especially useful as it can reach not only the target segment (i.e. youth as buyers), but also an expanded scope of ‘spillover’ audiences (i.e. motor enthusiast, older sports supporters as users). These tools can be used to gauge the degree of popularity of the campaign as well as provide some feedback from the consumers, which is another reason the company using social media.
The campaign would be held in Xu Jia Hui Sports Park which is located in the center of Shanghai and it is one of the most popular sports park and famous for street skate facilities. In that sports park, there is no need to worry about lacking of audience, because that is the place where all the young people are going in Shanghai especially for people who like sports. Furthermore, the location of the park is closed to several big shopping malls. There would be a huge number of people walk by that area. Also, before, the event be held, the company would choose “Eastern Morning Sports Daily” as the sports newspaper that the advertising going to be put on. It will appear on the second page of the paper an on the bottom of the page. For the TV commercial, Five Star Sports channel is chosen at the TV channel which plays the TV commercial and it will be played before the 6:30 PM sports news.
1.5 Media Company
The media company that the Monster energy drink is going to use for this campaign is Focus Media Group. Focus Media Group is China’s largest Digital Media Group in China. Focus Media could provide a broad portfolio of media advertising forms. This could help the Monster Company running the campaign easier and more efficient.
Section Two – Campaign analysis
Sources: Monster Energy Drink
2.1 Particularly striking about the campaign
The skateboarding campaign in Shanghai is planned by Monster Energy Drink. Under this campaign, the company uses a event sponsorship as an approach to achieve their desire. The skateboarding campaign offers opportunities to assess customer response to product immediately. The campaign could be pretty effective as a marketing tool because it can be a means of accessing a wide range of audiences such as decision makers in business, government entities and customers. It is very helpful for the company that take part in international trade, because sports events sponsorship transcends cultural and language barriers (morebusiness.com). The main feature of this campaign is that it uses extreme sports, skateboarding, to establish a link between Monster products with its targeted teenage segment. Teenage segment does not like other age segments. They have their own life style and personalities admiring exciting things and cool events. Therefore, this skateboarding campaign could effectively bridge Monster products to the young customers and reach potential ones.
2.2 Why does it works
Although Monster has operated successfully in Europe nations, America and Australia ranking the second largest energy drink company just behind Red Bull. In order to successfully accessing to a new foreign Asian market in China, Monster needs to conduct some activity to see the reflection of the local customer. This skateboarding campaign gives local customer the opportunities to try out the product of Monster firsthand and make the effectiveness measureable for Monster. If its core ideology fit with local culture well, the campaign will gain a active response. And if the response is negative, the corporation still have chance to adjust its strategy before it lose money. So this campaign is worthy to be executed and it improves Monster’s awareness and the recall voice of Monster.
2.3Specific factors lead to success –
2.3.1 Choice of target audience
Unlike the other industries, energy drink is still a new and developing industry and its target market is different and distinctive as well. The target market Monster aimed at is not various, wide and capacious. “Although everyone is susceptible to the fatigue of the super-charged, over-worked lifestyle, young people are especially vulnerable to persistent exhaustion and insufficient energy. This group of people, more specifically male teenagers and people in their 20s, are also most likely to believe in the veracity of the energy drinks’ claims” (oppapers.com). Therefore, the Monster Energy Drink is no exception to advance for and advertise to the certain age group. To stressing on the certain young generation, Monster Energy Drink Corporation should be even more particular in their marketing efforts, promoting its products and advertising to attract very specialized consumers base, such as gamers, extreme enthusiasts and the hip-hop crowd. And the influences of this focus on such a target audience could be found in the advertising campaigns of most energy drinks. “The marketing strategies that revolve around sponsoring public events or celebrity endorsements reflect this focus” (oppapers.com). The skate boarding campaign in Shanghai is also a reflection of the emphasizing on specific customers. Through organizing and sponsoring this extreme sports campaign, the Monster Company could well appeal to Chinese young customers especially Shanghai’s younger generation.
Choice of media
Because the Monster Energy Drink focuses on urban market and young customer base, the media choice and media strategy adopted should reach its aims. Brand awareness and image are necessary to succeed. Campaign must connect with the target to encourage trial purchase and eventually brand loyalty. In order to gain enough attractions for this campaign, rational investment in media and unremitting efforts for advertising are demanded. There are some effective ways helping for advertising this campaign. Firstly, television, as a major staple in any campaign, gives a direct demonstration of the advantages of Monster. A profile match strategy will be implemented in TV media approach. Prime time television advertisement in Teens’ channels and X sports programs is very efficient, such as Adventure and Skate board TV show. Secondly, mobile Billboard is a good choice of advertising. It draws attention to a message by sending it directly to the customer. It could reach a particular demographic target and achieves market saturation. Thirdly, well use of transit is very important too. Through penetrating every part of community, it delivers high-profile exposure near point-of-purchase location. Outdoor advertising offers the lowest cost per thousand, while maintaining the highest frequency (slideshare.net). Electronic direct mail also could demonstrate the benefits of Monster and the information detail about the campaign by sending to target audience and people who enjoy sports or sportsman into extreme action. Finally, Internet and website advertisements are suitable for attracting young age groups’ attention. As surfing Internet has become a way of life and nearly all teens are accustomed to know events from Internet. Internet advertisement, as a new approach of media advertising, is more likely to reach the young customer base. And it is a more economical way contrasting to the traditional media choices. Good choice of media could help monster to increase top of mind recall, change customers’ perception and increase share of voice which will in turn facilitate increasing its share of market.
2.4 What could be done to improve its execution?
Many young customers and young adults are confused energy drink with sports drink. During the campaign, the demonstration about the differences and the advantages should be revealed. Campaign is a process that Monster Corporation communicates with its consumers. It is important to communicate that Monster energy drink can maintain metal awareness generate energy pulse and it also a good tasting alternative for other caffeinated beverage containing all natural elements. Although it is critical to focus on marketing communication, the frequency of advertising should be managed efficiently to avoid annoying audience. Some extreme sports stars could also be invited into this campaign. Therefore, more extreme sports fans could be attracted and the atmosphere can be boosted and driven.
Section Three – Brand analysis
3.1 Brand Personality
Brand personality is described and measured by those human personality traits that are relevant for brands (Kapferer 2008). The brand characteristics come from different kinds of human personality. Therefore, the brand characteristic creates to achieve them differently in terms of different types of packing and advertising. Monster energy drink has been re-creating the band which is refreshing their brand to reinforce more target customers under new campaign. Monster energy drink has no exception to target to the certain age groups. Especially, teenager and youth groups are the most important groups for company to design the extremely targeted marketing strategy to gain more market share. On the other hand, individuation could represent the brand personality of Monster energy drink. To build the brand, the company should think different to capture more targeted customers. It promoted its products and advertising to attract very specialized consumers base, such as gamers, extreme enthusiasts and the hip-hop crowd.
3.2 Brand Identity
Brand identity is a unique set of brand associations implying a promise to customers and includes a core and extended identity (Ghodeswar 2008). Brand Identity is represented by colors, design, logotype, name, and symbol which are brand components in customers’ mind. The packing of Monster is quite different to other energy drinks. For example, the logo has a claw of Monster. It represents the powerful energy for young people. Also, the name is important factors to influence the awareness of this product. The color of Monster makes consumers to create more imagination and attract more attentions. Monster in advertising campaign is trying to cause consumers to challenge themselves and gain more emotional resonance. Also, the capacity of bottle is installed with the same price. More capacity of bottle is the important marketing strategy to catch more consumers.
3.3 Brand Relationships
A brand is an active relationship that customers know the value. A significant brand provides meaning and is important to a person because it connects with their life, and they have behavioral, attitudinal and emotional involvement (Varey 2002). The set of associations linked to a brand is the key components of brand relationship. Marketers work to connect a particular lifestyle or personality with their specific brand. Monster use the typically advertising strategy on social events help consumers link the advertising and packaging with the brands. The target consumer of Monster energy drink is teenager and youth. To reach this two segment, company uses different strategies to communicate with their potential consumers and create more new customers with the same interests. For example, they provide more opportunity to communicate with customer by brand celebration ceremony, sponsor sports competition such as surfing, gaming and racing, doodle exhibition. In addition, the subsidiary company of Monster offers the derivative products to gain more market share such as hats, T-shirts, watch and sports products. Also, Monster energy drink established the plan to promote their products in several ways such as social commercial advertising on roadside, shop’s refrigerator and back of vocal concert tickets.
3.4 Brand Community
The importance of brand community has already become the major trend for company to communicate with their consumers. The famous advertising spokesperson for company could enhance the effectiveness of advertising. For example, Michelin sponsored the races around the world. A numbers of marketers use Tiger Woods as an endorser for their brand. These are the classical tools to implement the brand community as the new strategy and share the brand value through servicing or animations. Wiegandt (2009) claimed that the existence of brand communities has the potential to reduce the cost of advertising, brand communities not only provide firms with a pool of suitable and highly motivated customers to choose from, but also to learn the social knowledge from brand communities. Monster energy drink has built many monster sports communities for their consumers. The Monster Army is one of the largest communities for great numbers of athletes and fans Monster Army could make people get insider access to the Monster Energy lifestyle – Athletes, Sponsorship, News, Music, Contests and Events. The Monster Army is a legion of athletes and fans that represent the brand all over the world. People could get together to share the information and experience from the brand communities and they provide a convenient way of communicating to its customer such as Facebook, Twitter, iTunes and YouTube.
3.5 Brand Stakeholder Relations
Stakeholders contribute to company’s business in exchange for the value that it delivers to them (Finskud 2009). Company need to secure the value of their stakeholders in order to gain more profit from existing market.
Successful branding can have a dramatic impact on consumers by providing the opportunities to offer the brand to appropriate stakeholders. Monster is concerning the connection with their stakeholders. They created the new plan for their stakeholders. Monster energy drink has a strong relationship with their rock bands partner. It provides more opportunities for their loyalty consumers to see the great rock singer. Also, it still sponsored some special sports event to attract more potential customers and support their brand communities become successful.
3.6 Brand Semiotics
Monster Energy is a brand of energy drink manufactured by Monster Beverage Company of Corona, California. It was one of the first drinks marketed in a 16-ounce can. It is available at most supermarkets and convenience stores in the U.S. and Canada. The original Monster energy drink comes in a black can with a green “M” logo. Monster pull tabs are unique from standard pull tabs in that they are punched with an “M” instead of a large hole (Energysip.com 2011). The semiotics is important because its identify Monster energy drink to the world. Monster energy drinks semiotic is all about building brand awareness and people trust about its products. This semiotics will be showed on all promotional item and document so it will support company’s image. Also, the attractive semiotics of Monster energy drink could influence the imagination of consumers and pulling the attention of consumers.
Typography is a design of the text, which covers a wide range of things, such as books, poster and website which are textual. Also, the words on paper or screen affects on the area around the words, the size and proportions of those channels (Friendsofed, 2011). The main job of typographer is to make things clear and to make things work, to make sure that the text is legible and that the underlying structures in the author’s manuscript (such as headings, chapters, and sections) are accurately reflected in the final work (Friendsofed, 2011). Typeface is a set of characters drawn from the same design. Times and Arial are typefaces. Strictly speaking, Times Regular and Times Bold are different typefaces, but they’re part of the same typeface family. Typeface is a significant of the visual component (Friendsofed, 2011).
3.8 Brand Strategy
Brand strategy is a plan of the brand which will concern with the objectives. As well as, the strategy should be differentiate and maintain the customer which relate to the brands’ vision. The brand strategy is affect on the brand behavior and brand experience of the business. (Brandchannel, 2010). Developing a brand strategy can be one of the most difficult steps in the marketing plan process. It’s often the element that causes most businesses the biggest challenge. Teenagers and young adults are undoubtedly the core consumer group for monster energy drinks. Brand strategy of monster is focus on teens and youths segments. Monster reached its core market of males aged 18 to 32 by flooding retailers with giant cans of its various energy drink offering, in essence supersizing the much smaller cans sold by Red Bull. Its aggressive image, striking packaging, and oversized cans have helped monster expand its position in growing energy drink market. With such a young core consumer base, Monster energy drink marketing focuses on youth themes and strategies. Monster improves their brand image through sponsorships of extreme sporting events and lifestyles, such as wakeboarding, skateboarding, motocross, and surfing (Simon, 2007). The most current trend in energy drinks marketing is from its users in cyberspace. Thus, monster energy has created their webpages to show their drinking products and their events. This kind of exposure is a boon to marketers, because they are in effect advertising the products. Moreover, it improve brand image and reflects strong grassroots support.
3.9 Employer Branding
It can be defined the Employees branding as an image of the company which will effort to communicate with the current and future employees to make them satisfy with their workplace (Reach Information, 2008). An employer brand is a collection of ideas and beliefs that influence the way current and potential employees view an organisation and the employment experience that organisation is offering. It communicates the company’s culture and values and helps to ensure employees are passionate about, and fit in with, the organisational culture to help move the company forward. For an employer brand to be successful, it should focus on the entire employment experience, organisational personality, goals and values. Therefore, the monster corporate brand supports the employer brand. Monster used peers influence to attract great people who have the passion and positive attitude in the job. Also, interview is often the most important battle to win. An organisation’s employer brand and reputation go a long way in attracting people and this is particularly beneficial for many larger companies. Monster should work harder on their employer brand and promote their image through public relations, advertising and word of mouth.
3.10 Brand culture
Brand culture is “the cultural dimensions or code of brand – history, image, myths, art, and theatre – that influence brand meaning in the market place” (Schroeder 2008). Monster brand cultural is a company culture in which employees “live” to brand values, to solve problems and make decisions internally. Monster Energy Drink is one of the newer breed of soft drink. Monster energy is the No. 1 Energy brand in the USA. First launched in the USA in 2002, Monster energy has been the innovator in the energy category in the USA, pioneering the 473ml can, 710ml resalable can, 946ml can, Juice + Energy and Java Monster. Monster energy builds a close and credible association with its core target market through its sponsorship of athletes and events that generate media coverage and re-enforce brand imagery (Schweppes, 2011).
Section Four – Agency Pitch
4.1 Situational analysis
In the future, we would like to choose a new branding approach which promotes Monster into Chinese market. Because China is thought to be the center of the Earth and the third largest country in the world (after Russia and Canada).The country has the largest population in the world. China is a time-honored country; it has more than 5000 year’s history. The culture of china is more traditional and conservative. After China joined the World Trade Organization (WTO), many retail investors from all over the world are developing quickly in China. They are expanding their market size and share, thus Chinese retailers are facing more severe competition. China’s economy under the past 30 years has changed from a centrally planned system that was huge closed to international trade to a more market-oriented economy. It has a rapidly increasing private sector and is a major player in the global economy. China is a rapidly rising global economic power. Overall growth has an average which between 7 to 8 percent for more than 10 years, with some markets expanding much more rapidly; In terms of the population of 1.3 billion, China presents the largest consumer market which is the most populous nation in the world. According to The World Factbook (2010), the labor force in China is 813.5 million in 2009 and it is the first rank if compare to the world.The government of China is very stability for foreign company to do international business in these days. In June 2010, China raised their foreign investment to the second-highest even the global economic recovery show signs of weakening.
4.2 Competitor media analysis
Monster has a competitor-Red Bull functional/energy drink. Red Bull energy drink is one of the earliest brand names in the field of functional/energy drinks in the world. Through the long-term development and publicity, the Red Bull has been spread into the countries of Asia. It coming into being 40 years ago in the beautiful South East Asian country—Thailand, is one of the earliest brand names in the field of functional/energy drinks in the world. Through the long-term development and publicity, the Red Bull has been spread into the countries of Asia. Although the other energy drinks such like Red Bull has already spread in Chinese market. Through Medias and promotion, the Red Bull brand had been widely known in China within two years.
4.3 All about Monster
Unlike Most companies, monster energy drink has their characteristics, they did not spend plenty of money to advertising and promotion to tell customers how good their products are, they choose to support scene, bands, athletes and fans. Monster sponsors athletes so they can make a career out of their passion. Monster is way more than an energy drink for customers. Energy drink is the quite new Market in China, and the assumed competitor is Red bull, thus Monster’s package will be very different from red bull as it is in U.S.A now. Marketers will also do the localization to fit in the one of largest market in the world, for example: using Chinese character. According to the income level in China, marketers will decide an acceptable price, and the red bull’s price in china is definitely our reference, we will make the price 5% lower than red bull.
In 2010, Monster Energy will expand their market and release their products to other countries. most companies spend their money on ad agencies, TV commercials, radio spots, and billboards to tell customers how good their products are, but Monster does not, they choose to support scene, bands, athletes and fans. Monster sponsors athletes so they can make a career out of their passion. Because the Monster Energy Drink focuses on urban market and young customer base, the media choice and media strategy adopted should reach its aims. Brand awareness and image are necessary to succeed. Campaign must connect with the target to encourage trial purchase and eventually brand loyalty. In order to gain enough attractions for this campaign, rational investment in media and unremitting efforts for advertising are demanded. There are some effective ways helping for advertising this campaign. Firstly, television, as a major staple in any campaign, gives a direct demonstration of the advantages of Monster. A profile match strategy will be implemented in TV media approach. Prime time television advertisement in Teens’ channels and X sports programs is very efficient, such as Adventure and Skate board TV show. Secondly, mobile Billboard is a good choice of advertising. It draws attention to a message by sending it directly to the customer. It could reach a particular demographic target and achieves market saturation. Thirdly, well use of transit is very important too. Through penetrating every part of community, it delivers high-profile exposure near point-of-purchase location. We will find the largest drink distributor in the world which is also running business in China to support Monster energy drink, therefore Coca cola will also be our partner in China, same as in U.S.A. In terms of Promotion, we will follow the same methods what Monster now is doing in U.S.A, which is not doing advertising much, but sponsor and support the local athletes, bands, and sport events.
Energy drink is a quite new product in the world, thus a lot of information is too hard to reach, and there are rare studies related to energy drink, so the resources researchers can get is limited. In addition, according to our research purpose, during the seminar, all of researchers have agreed that Energy drink is a specific market and different from other soft drinks, it should be individual analyzed, hence, we set up Monster’s opponents which are energy drinks companies only. And this decision has become our restriction during the research, because we all focused on energy drink companies, and assumed them as Monster’s only opponents.
To sum up, Energy drink is a new campaign in drinks’ companies, and this market is not only enlarging, but lucrative. Everyone drink company wants to be the first brand in this field. As previous chapters discussed, Red-bull and Monster are considered to be the first-two brands in energy drinks. The competition between them is keen. How can Monster be won in this campaign? In this study, researchers all agreed that Monster should pay more attention on overseas markets, and the reasons is, the endorsers of Monster are all based in USA, but worldwide famous in their own audiences, on the other words, their followers are everywhere crossing over the world, thus Monster should utilize this opportunity to introduce their product broadly, and build up their brand image as well. For example, Energy drinks in most oriental countries is not common at the moment, consumers there are still need to be developed, Monster should try to be there as the first arrived energy drink, and then proceed to branding themselves as the first brand energy drink through most common social medias, meanwhile doing the same method as they are still working on in USA, sponsor the local stars and sport event, localizing themselves, furthermore, while Monster is worldwide everywhere, they can earn not only income but also the reputation, this could be another positive instrument for Monster to win the competition in their hometown USA. Researchers believe this way could be help for Monster energy drink’s future business
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