TEXT OF STORY
Kai Ryssdal: Despite its recent primary use as a celebratory bath for winning football coaches, Gatorade has bigger dreams for itself. If you tune into the NBA playoffs tonight, you might notice athletes doing something different with it — actually drinking it.
Marketplace Stacey Vanek-Smith reports Gatorade’s trying to get back in the game.
Stacey Vanek-Smith: Gatorade used to be a drink for hardcore athletes, but its message has gotten a little flabby, says beverage consultant Tom Pirko.
Tom Pirko: They got a little greedy, they tried to make the drink for everyone, so that essentially you didn’t have to break a sweat.
But those armchair athletes moved on, and last year, Gatorade’s U.S. sales dropped more than 10 percent. Now, the deep down body thirst quencher is regrouping. John Sicher edits Beverage Digest.
John Sicher: They’re trying to go from being a sports drink to a sports hydration innovation company.
Translation: There are now three Gatorades for before, during and after exercise: G-Prime, G-Perform and G-Recover. Ads show new types of athletes, like cheerleaders and surfers.
Gatorade commercial: Gatorade. That’s G.
Consultant Tom Pirko is skeptical.
Pirko: One of the most difficult things in marketing is to try and go backward and reclaim territory that you’ve given up.
Gatorade still holds about three-quarters of the sports drink market.
I’m Stacey Vanek-Smith for Marketplace.
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