Snapple use to be a fun, innovative brand. It had great advertising with the Snapple woman, Howard Stern loved it and it seemed primed for bigger and better things…then it was sold and sold again and under the aegis of Cadbury Schweppes, it seems, to paraphrase one commenter, primed for sale to Coke or Pepsi.
Where to start? Maybe at the dated, still-not-redesigned packaging for the core product:
This is the best part of their product line-up because, though old, at least the design and logo are recognizable as Snapple. Especially the logo. There is a lot of equity in that logo…equity that the brand is stepping away from in their new Juice (that isn’t 100% juice) product:
Crappy vertical Snapple type, no more blue or red, no oval around the type. Completely forgettable. Oh, and still on shelf next to the base product…and next to the new Antioxidant Water product. Not only is this clearly a Glaceau knock-off, not only is it late to the game, not only does the label look like a cheap sales sample because of the heavy paper and crappy glue, but it has a different logo than the above products even though it sits on shelf next to them:
Let’s finish it off with the fourth product in the Snapple line-up. Also boasting a different logo treatment, the new Tea products actually taste good, but still have to sit on shelf next to the other Snapple products even though it looks nothing like any of the others. This is Branding 101. Snapple fails:
Maybe if Snapple had a bigger budget they could pull off creating all of the sub-brands as separately branding entities…but that’s a stretch. Not even Coca-Cola strays too far from the fonts and colors that make products identifiably Coke. They do that because it makes sense, because consumers want recognizable brands and products and because if they are going to spend a shit ton of money to build a brand they don’t plan to throw it away with a product design that doesn’t connect to the brand they have built.
These packages are atrocious not because they are bad designs, though it doesn’t really help Snapple’s case that they are, but because consumers driven to buy (or driven to passive preference) via advertising end up on shelf not knowing what the hell is going on.
To top it all off a little Plano-based birdie tells me that Cadbury Schweppes’ in-house production and pre-press shop Group 360, which brands itself as a digital asset management and workflow solutions shop and whose in-every-way-horrible website tells you all you need to know about the agency’s design capabilities, is going to be handling the base Snapple packaging redesign.
Not a bad gig for a bunch of low-rent studio artists and totally fitting for what the brand has become.
It’s just too bad that it’s gotten this far.