This is another one that started with a bang and ended with a whimper. Launched in early 2010, Minute Maid Nimbu Fresh came to the market after the launch of Nimbooz by Pepsi Co India and LMN by Parle Agro. It would seem Coke left it a bit too late to jump into the fray.
Nimbu paani was a kind of summer drink that every Indian household was accustomed to. It is one of the most ancient recipes to beat the scorching heat. PepsiCo and Parle Agro launched Nimbooz and LMN respectively in 2009.
In an effort to bring out the feeling of something homemade, the beverage company introduced the juice with the positioning, 'Bilkul ghar jaisa'. It went to cities all around the country in a storm of promotional campaigns. Since the consumer for the nimbu paani was youth, Coca-Cola spared no medium or mode to grab his or her attention. Malls, hoardings, bridges, stations, buses and trains, metros, glow signs, were all used to find a place in every youth's mind. Life sized bottles of Nimbu Fresh were fabricated and put out at major centres of different cities and towns and in some cases, small bottles were carved in on bus stops. A TVC too was introduced.
The high-decibel, no-holds-barred splash did not get the result Coke wanted. A media observer says, "The product was launched very late. Why would a consumer go for this new product while the market already has Nimbooz and LMN for the past year. It was just a 'me-too' initiative for Coca-Cola India's side."
There are other factors too. Of the entire population, only a small number of consumers are health-conscious and based in metros - a large part still prefer carbonated drinks. Moreover, the maximum demand for Coke's nimbu paani lies in the range of 21-30 years, closely followed by the age group of 31-40 years and most of the consumer purchase juice and juice drinks as part of monthly ration and a few purchase juice occasionally. Lastly, in any drink it is the taste the matters the most. In this case, however, Minute Maid Nimbu Fresh turned out to be too sweet. Consumers didn't care much for a sweet nimbu pani.