The “La Croixs Over Boys” T-shirt line boasts virtually 3,500 Instagram followers.
Rapper Big Dipper’s comical R& B-inspired single “LaCroix Boi” has racked up more than 538,000 YouTube positions since being released last summer.
The hashtag #LaCroix has been used more than 187,000 times.
Flavored sparkling water brand LaCroix has become a social media darling and propelled itself into mainstream pop culture in a relatively short time. The trendy seltzer in colorful cans has also seen major sales growth and helped boost the entire sparkling water market.
National Beverage Corp ., owned of LaCroix, reported net sales of $826.9 million for its 2017 fiscal year , up from $662 million in 2013 and $575.1 million in 2009, according to the company’s annual reports. While the entire sparkling water category saw a 16.2 percentage increase from 2015 -2 016, LaCroix alone grew 72.7 percent.
But how exactly is LaCroix creating such growth? What builds it different from other sparkling waters out there?
It’s older than most millennials, but it’s marketed in the most millennial way possible.
While it may seem like an overnight success to some, LaCroix has actually been around since the 1980 s as a regional brand available only in the Midwest.
Beverage industry experts attribute its mainstream success to the company being in the right place at the right time to tap into several millennial-driven market trends, including their desire to reduce their sugar uptake and habit of instagramming their favorite products.
LaCroix took to social media to help drive its renown, partly out of necessity, since marketing a brand can be expensive. LaCroix rarely awards media interviews and did not respond to interview petitions from HuffPost, so we talked to Duane Stanford, executive editor at Beverage-Digest, for some background.
“Some of the social media happened because the consumers “thats been” drinking LaCroix did what they do with a lot of things — they shared it and talked about it, ” Stanford said. “It has enough of an interesting package and fun, interesting names like’ pamplemousse’ for the grapefruit-flavored sparkling water that it kind of almost created a life of its own online, and the marketing squads at LaCroix were very smart in capitalizing on that as well, probably even beyond what they had expected.”
While seltzer consumption remains small compared to traditional soda brands — it constructs up about 1 percent of liquor occasions, according to David Portalatin, vice president and food industry adviser at marketplace trends firm The NPD Group — industry experts say major soft drink companies, like Coca-Cola and PepsiCo, are taking notice of LaCroix’s success and beefing up their own sparkling water offerings.