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“Innocent Drink” was found in 1999, by three Cambridge university graduates namely; Richard
Reed, Adam Balon and Jon Wright. The company, Innocent, started out by selling smoothies at a
music festival. The technique used by the company to identify if the product has a potential
market, they put up 2 bins with a big sign saying ‘yes’ and a bind which says ‘No’. The people
who bought the smoothies were asked if they thought the business for making smoothies should
be stopped. When the boys counted the drinks it the “yes” bin which was full. As a result they
decided to give up their jobs. After quitting their jobs the three of them started to find investors
to invest with them to get started, it was a struggle for them. But eventually they found a wealthy
American Businessman, Maurice Pinto who decided to invest
The company currently is one of the companies dominating the UK Smoothie market having
attaining about 75% - 80% of the market share. And it is reported that the company sells two
million smoothies per week (BBC News, 2009). Throughout the successful years, the company
has managed maintain a very interesting working environment and staying true to their brand
In an interview given by Co-founder Richard Reid said to the BBC News : "Every promise that
Innocent has made - about making only natural healthy products, pioneering the use of better,
socially and environmentally-aware ingredients, packaging and production techniques, donating
money to charity and having a point of view on the world - will remain.
"We'll just get to do them even more.”
They contribute 10% from their profit to charity and are continuously participating in fund-raising
events such as ‘The Big Knit’. The Big Knit is a charity who works with the AGE UK to
help and keep the old people warm and healthy during the cold winter. The company encourages
customers to knit hats, and these hats were put on the innocent drink bottles which were then
sold and from each bottle 25 pence was donated and will be donated even now directly to the
As the business grew bigger, at first the aim was to avoid the big-business image. Therefore the
innocents markets on their own private ownership, own ethics and Morales, recyclable packages
and promoting them as environment friendly carbon footprint. However in the year 2009, the
company announced that the company has agreed to sell 10-20% of its share to The Coca-Cola
Company. This brought whole lot of negative publicity and their website received numerous
negative backlashes and the customers even encouraged to boycott the company. According to
Mr. Reed "We chose Coca-Cola because as well as providing the funds, they can help get our
products to more people in more places. Plus, they have been in business for more than 120
years, so there will be things we can learn from them." The company wanted to go global, in
April 2012 The Coca-Cola Company increased their stake up to 58%. This created opportunity
for the Innocent Drinks Company to become the official smoothie and juice of the London
Olympic Paralympics Games. Moreover in the February 2013, the Coca-Cola’s total stake
increased to 90% which left the three founders with a diminutive share.
The company has number of products in the production line. Smoothies being their primary
product consist of whole crushed fruit juices with no artificial flavors. Followed by this is a super
smoothie, which is a mixture of fruits and vegetables, botanicals and crushed seeds. Two flavors
of juices, apple and orange. Extra smoothie juice, kids’ smoothies, kids’ juice and kids’ fruity
water are available. Moreover, 4 different flavors of noodles pot, Veg pots filled with healthy
vegetables and not other additions and lastly the fruit tube, a tube pure fruit puree.
Source: Innocent official website
Before the Coca-cola invested in the Innocent Drinks Company, the company has a very
selective range of customers, which was the UK market.
As mentioned previously, the company has attained about 75- 80% of the UK’s market and sells
their products over 15 countries around the world. The coca-cola investment brought the
introduction of the products to the European market. And by 2010, Innocent Drink has become
the number one in the European market.
However as mentioned earlier, after Coca-Cola Company invested with the Innocent, many of
the customers expressed negativity towards the Innocent company because they feared that the
values and standards of the Innocent drinks will be violated. Hence, Innocent Drinks Company
had to explain about the big step which they took. It was believed that the company needed the
necessary changes; the company explains it as they needed a “sugar daddy” to carry on the
business. More to this the co-founder Mr. Reeds described the relationship with the Coca-Cola
Company as “beautiful” because though the Coca-Cola owns 90% share of the company, the
founders of Innocent Drinks are able to run the company (Neate, 2013).Moreover, The Coca-
Cola Company promised not to intervene in the business activities of the Innocent Drinks. As a
result Innocent Drinks are exposed to a wider customer base and able to attain advantage from
marketing and the buying power of the Coca-Cola Company.
Macro Environmental Audit
Macro-environmental audit is the external factors which affects the business in order to identify
current and future progress.
The U.K government recommend to specify about the fruit juice products
i.e.; it should be identified whether it is concentrated or 100% fruit juice
Government has set minimum wage rate in therefore the company expense can
Economic growth: recession is a reason that can affect the sales of the Innocent.
Unemployment: due to high unemployment, people are switching to cheaper brands.
Consumer attitude: people are becoming more health conscious, therefore innocent’s
product is designed to fulfill this criteria
Brand image- the clean brand image of innocent has led it business from nothing to a
million dollar business. The company also creates uniquely humored consumer
communication pattern with the customers.
Innovative company: in contrast to uniquely designed products and the company has
its own data base according to Mr. Reed
Advance manufacturing of products- eco friendly bottles
ANALYSIS OF RELATIONSHIP MARKETING STRATEGIES
o According to Kotler “when a consumer buy a product, they exchange something
of value (the price) to get something of value (benefits of having or using the
product)”. Therefore the company follows the value based pricing strategy. From
the company website it is known that the prices of the products are cheaper than
the homemade product.
o Exclusive smoothie flavor for a supermarket: the flavor is maintained in all the
store around the countries. The fruits are picked from farms especially the founder
has tested and approved.
o Environment friendly: as there are many environment lobby group, The Innocent
uses recyclable plastics in creating the bottles and packaging of its products.
o Size choices: availability of size choices makes the product more interesting.
Some consumers wants to store a big packet for a longer time, whilst the other
needs just a significant amount to be store according to the size of the family or
people they are serving. Therefore, the company has smoothie cartons in both
sizes which are 250ml and in 750ml packs. And the smoothie bottles do have the
choice of choosing from bottles sizes 250ml to 160ml small bottles.
o Healthy and beneficial: the products of the company are 100% purely naturally
which means no preservatives, artificial colorings or sugar is added to the
products produced by the company.
o This includes the packaging process: which the company ensures that the
production method to have the lowest impact on the environment. And the
sustainability of raw ingredients strategy: have their own minimum standards set
for covering all farm management, environment and economic issues. Moreover,
the quality of the drink, the rich smoothies and the juices gives customers the full
confidence in the product for being 100% natural
o In the year 2011, the company launched an on-pack promotion for the smoothie
brand that featured the retired athlete Kriss Akabusi: the giveaway prices were;
money- off coupons for future purchase, health and fitness apps, free day-pass at
gyms. (Eleftheriou-Smit, 2011)
o Charity donations: the big Knit as mentioned earlier is a big donation platform to
o Sponsor of 2012 official smoothie and juice of the London Olympic Paralympics
o The Innocent Drink is popular for the humor used in delivering their products.
o The customers are given advices through website and in labels in products.
Source: the company website: (http://www.innocentdrinks.co.uk/us/being-sustainable/production)
o Randomly the company chooses a random retailer to sell their drinks. This is
awarded as “Retailer of the month” and a posh certificate is given and other
benefits are given for the hard work that they have done.
o Available at supermarkets: it is available in almost every supermarket in the U.K
and some more European market such as Spain, Italy France, Germany, etc.
o Innocent on Restaurant Menus: for instance the McDonald sold Innocent Drinks
for some time.
The company held it first a grown-ups meeting (AGM) in other words an annual general
meeting, with enthusiastic “Innocent Drinkers”. The humor they share with customers is one
reason that the customer keeps coming back other than the quality products. Most employees
who have left the organization has left to set up their own business, with great experience and
lessons earned by working at the Innocent Company.
RECOMMENDATION OF FEASIBLE STRATEGIES
Innocent Juice Bottles
As the company produces different flavors and sizes of smoothies the following strategies can be
implemented to make the item more popular.
Premium Volume Channel: as now the company has all the resources to do marketing
and promotions, it should focus more on making the product available in bigger market
such as Asian countries. This will help to increase their customer base along with sky
rocketing the sales and profit earned.
Make it more transparent: as mentioned earlier the company is now a sub company under
Coca-Cola Company, they should make as transparent as possible about the ingredients
that is put into these 100% natural Smoothies, the profit to coca-cola company and as
well as to make the charity fund transfers also more transparent.
Making it available at juice bars by creating one of their own. As currently they are just
marketing through other retail shops and through social media. Setting up their own
shops make it easier to market and share the knowledge which the company has about the
Make marketing through a gym, by promoting their high protein juice. For instance
making it available at local gyms.
Creating more flavors of juice, as currently they have only two flavors available.
Making it available in different sizes, and promoting it in schools, Making interesting
packaging from time to time to attract more people
To conclude the overall business is looking in good state, however the company needs to stick to
their moral ethics and objectives. The assignment focused on the types of products produced by
the company such as smoothies, juices, variety of kids juices, noodles pot, veg pots and fruit
tubes. The current customer base is the U.K market by dominating around 79% of the market
share. Moreover the macro environmental issues, political, economical, social and technological
issues were identified.
Furthermore, the relationship marketing strategies were identified, which are, price, place,
product, promotion, people, process and physical evidence. Most importantly the feasible
strategies to improve one of their products for Juice were given. (Act No.: 15/2010 (Tobacco
Control Act), 2014)
o Eleftheriou-Smit, L.-M. (2011, December 8). Innocent to launch 'Healthy New Year' on-pack
promotion for smoothies. Retrieved July 3, 2014, from Marketing Megazine:
o ND. (2009, April 7). Coke buys into Innocent smoothies .BBC News. Retrieved July 6,
o ND. (n.d). The Essential 7P’s To An Effective Online Marketing Strategy. Retrieved July 4,
2014, from Marketing Mix: http://marketingmix.co.uk/
o Neate, R. (2013, February 22). Coca-cola takes full control of innocent. Retrieved July 6,
2014, from The Guardian: http://www.theguardian.com/business/2013/feb/22/coca-cola- full-control-
o Reid, R. (2009, April 7). Coke buys into Innocent smoothies. (B. NEWS, Interviewer)
o The Big Knit. (nd). Age Uk- Love Later Life: Retrieved July 5, 2014 on,
o Turner, C. (2008, jan 23). The Marketing Secret behind Innocent Drinks. Retrieved July 5,
2014, from Utalk marketing.com Retrieved from:
o (2011, 03). The Success of Innocent Drinks Using Competing Values Framework and Pestel
Analysi.. StudyMode.com. Retrieved 03, 2011, from http://www.studymode.com/essays/The-
Eleftheriou-Smit, L.-M. (2011, December 8). Innocent to launch 'Healthy New Year' on-pack
promotion for smoothies. Retrieved July 3, 2014, from Marketing Megazine:
N.a. (2014, october 18). Act No.: 15/2010 (Tobacco Control Act). Retrieved from Tobacco
control laws: http://www.tobaccocontrollaws.org/legislation/country/maldives/laws
ND. (2009, April 7). Coke buys into Innocent smoothies . Retrieved July 6, 2014, from BBC
ND. (n.d, n.d n.d). The Essential 7P’s To An Effective Online Marketing Strategy. Retrieved July
4, 2014, from Marketing Mix: http://marketingmix.co.uk/
Neate, R. (2013, February 22). Coca-cola takes full control of innocent. Retrieved July 6, 2014,
from The Guardian: http://www.theguardian.com/business/2013/feb/22/coca-cola-full-control-
Reid, R. (2009, April 7). Coke buys into Innocent smoothies. (B. NEWS, Interviewer) Retrieved
July 1, 2014, from BBC News: http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/uk_news/7986901.stm
The Big Knit. (nd). Retrieved July 5, 2014, from Age Uk- Love Later Life:
Turner, C. (2008, jan 23). The Marketing Secret behind Innocent Drinks. Retrieved July 5, 2014,
from Utalk marketing.com: