Todd Kaplan ’06, vice president of PepsiCo, gives a talk titled “Product Launches in the Digital Era,” a Colloquium in Marketing Leadership. He is the leading marketer for LIFEWATR, the company’s first premium water brand. In his talk, Kaplan will discuss the challenges of navigating a product launch in fast-growing but relatively nascent category.
The beverage industry is experiencing a period of tremendous change: 2016 was the first year ever where bottled water sales exceeded soda sales in the United States. How is PepsiCo adapting and taking advantage of the new opportunities created by this change in consumer tastes?
Consumers are now looking for healthier choices—62% of people make a conscious effort to have a healthy diet, 41% select beverages for healthful reasons, and 66% believe that all food and beverage categories should be made as healthful as possible. We’ve seen this reflected in the beverage landscape. Among beverage [options] in the country, what you see is a huge rise in water. A lot of people are shifting their consumption preferences, and our company is committed to offering choice.
Water in this whole context is a critical driver of growth. In the U.S., water is the number one biggest category among all beverages consumed. It’s driving 45% of all the beverage growth, projected as almost $9 billion in the next five years.” Todd Kaplan ’06, VP of Marketing at PepsiCo, where he is leading the marketing for LIFEWTR, PepsiCo’s first premium water brand.