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Tweet of the Week

The Quietest Rivalry in Soda

June 18, 2021
Mae Rice

Coca-Cola is on Twitter, and 7UP has a verified Instagram, but the root beer brands are... where, exactly? A recent tweet made us wonder, so we took a look into how root beer is (or isn't!) marketed.

Table of Contents

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Edward Stockwell makes an interesting point here. 

These root beers are both owned by corporations with massive advertising budgets — Mug by Pepsi, and Barq’s by Coca-Cola. (Coca-Cola spends an average of $4B a year on ads.)

But we never see Barq’s or Mug ads. 

And there are other signs these root beers have… less than ample marketing budgets. 

5 signs root beer sees minimal marketing spend

  1. Neither root beer has a verified Instagram or Twitter. Meanwhile, Pepsi and Coca-Cola (and 7Up and Sprite!) have both. 
  2. Barq’s biggest fan account on Instagram has 2K followers. And its bio starts with “The Barq’s fandom is dying.”
  3. The most recent Pepsi tweet about Mug didn’t bode well. “Mug Root Beer has not been discontinued nationally,” it proclaims. If you have to say it...
  4. These brands’ most popular TV ads ran in pre-2000. Google “Barq’s root beer advertisement,” and the top result is from 1997.
  5. Mug’s mascot is a bulldog named Dog. Feels like they tried to save on creative there.

Our takeaway?

The root beer market may be growing — but not fast enough for big beverage conglomerates to invest in the space. Like, at all.

Mae Rice
about the author

Mae Rice is senior editor at MarketerHire. A long-time content marketer, she enjoys interviewing marketing experts and learning about the weird and wonderful feedback loops that connect marketing and culture. She also loves any ad that makes her say "Huh?!" — especially Tim and Eric's ad for Totino's pizza rolls, which she watches way more often than you would think.

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