I was scouring the news feeds for a topic of this week’s post and came across a BevNet.com review for a new Rockstar Energy drink – the Rockstar Energy Pink (link here). Since you can go to the link I won’t elaborate on the review but go right to my topic. I’ve never really been on board with all the different energy drinks on the market because this category seems overextended and past its peak, and the launch of this product confirms it. The release of Pink indicates that a “Big 3” energy manufacturer is officially targeting female consumers. Could it be that energy drinks predominately target males? Yes. Could it be that there are only so many male consumers that are willing to drink energy drinks? Could it be that since the energy drink category is maturing (growing, but no longer the double digit growth seen in years past) and manufacturers are looking elsewhere to sustain their growth? Also yes.
Hence the launch of Rockstar Energy Pink, an energy drink that implies it’s a female energy drink. The product’s packaging is pink, with no mention of “diet” or “females only”, and also comes in a 12oz (355ml) aluminum can compared to their other products in a 16oz (473ml) can. Targeting female consumers aren’t new to the energy drink market nor any beverage market, but this product faces an uphill battle.
While Rockstar Energy is a known energy drink company, they are neither the top-selling producer (Red Bull) or second-top-selling producer (Monster Energy) in the category. Not only are they fighting hard to get consumers to pick up a Rockstar Energy product versus the competition, they are now offering another option for consumers to choose within the Rockstar portfolio. In the end, if Pink attracts female consumers to drink Rockstar, they have a winning product. If the product tanks, they might also be dragging one or two other Rockstar Energy products with them. Retailers have limited space in their beverage aisles and coolers for products, so with a new product in the aisle something else will lose space. Retailers may tell Rockstar that in return for supporting their new product, they must de-list one of their own existing products in order to make shelf space. So if Rockstar is forced to take out one of their products to make space for Pink, logic would be to take out the slowest selling Rockstar SKU.
Despite the above-noted concerns, I believe this product has a chance to succeed. While Rockstar Energy has seemingly flooded the marketplace with their products, this Rockstar Energy Pink advertises to a different audience and will also likely be placed in shelf space away from their regular energy drinks (likely to sit on the same shelf as Red Bull and Diet Red Bull based on packaging and 355ml size). If their price point is comparable to Red Bull’s energy drinks, they may take some sales away from the leader while protecting their own sales. And if this product is successful, you can be sure to see Monster Energy also come out with a product targeting female consumers as well.