Drank, the relaxation beverage from the United States is making its way north of the border this summer. Made by Innovation Beverages Group, this “slow your roll” beverage’s main all-natural ingredients are rosehips (vitamin C and anti-oxidants), valerian root (anxiety relaxant) and melatonin (regulates and enhances sleep cycle), as well as high fructose corn syrup and sucrose. 7-Eleven convenience stores will be the main location to carry this beverage, but more grocery, convenience, and drug stores will be following within the next few months to stock this product. The success that this relaxation beverage experienced in the United States is extending its reach to Canada.
However, an article in the Vancouver Sun (article link here) documents this beverage and the supposed negative effects this drink may have. The article mentions that Drank carries with it negative connotations because of its resemblance to illicit beverages from its name, coloring, and beverage properties. The word “drank” refers to a beverage in the United States that puts the drinker to sleep, with cough syrup, codeine and promethazine as its main properties. Consumers groups fear that after trying this beverage the consumers will in turn seek the real thing.
This concern does have merit, but BevWire would like to think that Canadian consumers are better educated and are less likely to seek out a drug after trying a beverage. In any case, we’ll have to wait and see.
Innovation Beverage Group and PX Enterprises Ltd (the company responsible for Drank’s Canadian launch) position the beverage to follow that of the United States: rap and hip-hop culture. Ludacris, an American hip-hop artist, is one of Drank’s main supporters, so the hip-hop positioning does makes sense. However, Canada’s hip-hop culture is not as strong compared the United States, so this positioning may not work as effectively here. Canada has stronger rock/alternative music bands and supporters rather than hip-hop, so Drank may need to seek out some rock bands.
To seek out Canada’s hip-hop culture, maybe Drank should partner up with Canada’s So You Think You Can Dance TV show (cost or budget permitting, of course). Hip-hop culture will be most apparent there and it will be a great marketing platform to showcase the beverage, similar to how Coca-Cola products have garnered exposure (read vitaminwater zero) through American Idol with their partnership. Drank can place their beverages on the judging panel’s table, or request that the drapes/curtains be made the soft purple color of their beverage and use these marketing methods to get into the minds of live and TV viewers. Just a random thought, but there are legs to this idea and it may make sense to align the beverage up with some form of Canada hip-hop culture.