New Soft Drinks Attempt to Appeal To Young Indonesians

Children, teenagers and young adults now contribute a significant amount of purchasing power in Indonesia. The percentage of the population aged 0 to 14 years old totalled almost 27% in 2010. Young consumers in turn are increasingly influencing family purchases compared to the previous generation, and are typically more brand conscious.

Growing urbanisation leads to a growing number of working mothers and busier daily schedules, and teenagers and children are increasingly eating and drinking outside the house, creating opportunities for soft drinks manufacturers to convey brand messages.

Child-specific advertising

In general, manufacturers’ attempts to approach the young consumer segment are visible through advertising and commercials which feature actors from this age group. Advertising and promotional activities targeting young Indonesian consumers in recent years include Sinar Sosro PT’s attempt to approach children with Saga, an animated mascot who made an appearance in 4D cinemas in major cities and in television commercial breaks during programmes for children such as Nickelodeon’s cartoons.

The company is looking to promote its pouch packaging RTD tea product towards young children with the campaign. Certain soft drink products in Indonesia specifically target the teenager segment, such as fruit- flavoured carbonates and lemonade/lime carbonates like Fanta.

Coca-Cola Indonesia PT launched Fanta Vitamin C by inviting teenagers to participate in a music and games entertainment day dubbed Max-C Fun Day in mid-2009.

Existing sugar-sweetened drinks can benefit

With health and wellness trends being adopted by young adults and adults, certain soft drinks which are perceived as less healthy may see their target audience decline slightly in terms of average age.

Before reaching adulthood, consumers are less likely to stress the importance of health and wellness and may place taste factor, packaging design or attractive commercials as the key factors in determining soft drinks purchases. Therefore, the growing health and wellness trend is leading more traditional sugar sweetened soft drinks to target a younger audience, especially products which are perceived as less healthy such as carbonates and sweet beverages.

Future lies with more targeted efforts

It is imperative for manufacturers to rejuvenate their products and brands to approach the up-and-coming consumer segment in order to maintain volume sales. With further development in marketing and communication strategies, manufacturers should be looking at ways to approach a specific consumer segment more effectively rather than targeting a broader consumer base.

Though younger consumers are less concerned with health and wellness qualities in soft drinks, products with these characteristics could still succeed by targeting female consumers in Indonesia. Women have been shown to be generally more concerned about health than their male counterparts in the country, and have not had very many soft drinks brands to this point specifically communicated to them.