Amy Garlit is not afraid to admit it: She sometimes drinks Pedialyte when she’s hung over.
“If I know I’m going to have a crazy night out, I’ll buy some in advance for the next day,” she says.
Garlit, 30, says she used to drink Gatorade after a big night out — like a pub crawl — to rehydrate. Then a friend turned her on to Pedialyte a couple years ago.
Pedialyte, an electrolyte-filled drink used to rehydrate kids with stomach flu, is now getting traction among lots of adults like Garlit.
Abbott Laboratories, which makes the beverage, says adult use of the drink has increased by 57 percent since 2012. The top reasons for adult use are stomach flu and hang-overs.
“Today we know that more than a third of our sales actually come from that adult use,” says Michelle Zendah, an Abbott spokeswoman.
Zendah says the company is trying to appeal to its new customer base with flavors like strawberry lemonade and orange. She says they’re “a little more appealing than a grape or a fruit punch that a child would prefer.”
A new social media marketing campaign includes quips like Pedialyte goes well “with both red and white.” Wine, that is.
“The question is, how do you keep your marketing mix consistent with the two segments,” asks Carlos Torelli, a marketing professor at the University of Minnesota. He says some parents might find Pedialyte’s new identity hard to swallow.
“Because they don’t think that the kids should be drinking something that somebody drinks after a hangover,” he says. “Although it might be chemically the same thing, it might look weird.”
Torrelli says it might make sense for Abbott to have two separately branded drinks. The company says it currently has no such plans.
Video produced by Preditorial
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