Drive Sales by Positioning Your Beverages

John Buckner SVP, National Account Sales

 

Positioning remains the most elemental marketing construct. Getting it right means everything. Not every item on your menu commands this sort of marketing attention, but new beverage items certainly make the cut based on profitability alone. But also, beverages lend themselves to being destination-oriented traffic drivers when done right. The essence of positioning always boils down to differentiation from your consideration set. To maximize this opportunity you have to draw a contrast with what others are offering; otherwise, you really have no position at all.

Fortunately coffee-based drinks offer a lot of options when it comes to positioning. Distinct positions can be derived from flavors, origins, taste profiles, causes, blends, recipes and preparation methods. Selecting the right combination of attributes that fits your concept and cuisine type is the key. Then, wrapping the drink up with a name and tagline, and getting behind it with a launch plan and advertising budget, will ensure that you get tremendous take-up on the new beverage.

All of these tactics are vividly seen at Cinnabon with their cinnamon-flavored iced coffee and Chillatta®. Looking for an indulgent snack-drink that they could own, Cinnabon created an experience that is like drinking one of their famous rolls complete with the frosting and makara cinnamon notes. They launched the products with a tagline that proclaimed, “Same great taste, now in liquid form.” Astute positioning was part of the recipe for making beverages the fastest growing category at one of the nation’s most beloved bakeries.

Don’t be a me-too. Position your next big beverage right and reap a torrent of profitable sales.