WIG: Smartwater

Glaceau Smartwater is a bottled water brand owned by the Coca-Cola Company that started in 1996. In the United States, it was one of the top five brands of water in 2016 and had $830 million in sales in 2017. Although it describes itself as vapor distilled and electrolyte enhanced, the brand has been criticized for not have any unique taste. However, Smartwater continues to be profitable because of its clean design. In the past decade, many bottled water brands have decided to use less plastic to make their bottles in an effort to be more environmentally conscious. Many 16.9oz bottles like Poland Spring, Nestle, and Crystal Geyser have the curved body and ridges for easier grip. Despite these trends, Smartwater continues to have thicker, smooth plastic on its 1L bottle with a clean label. The thickness of the plastic makes it feel more durable and smooth exterior gives the bottle a clean silhouette. The bottom of the bottle also has a smaller diameter than typical liter water bottles, and compensates by making the bottle taller. The smaller diameter makes the bottle as easy to hold as a 16.9oz bottle and less clunky feeling. These design traits allows the brand to align itself with durability and luxury, reflected in the brand’s ability to raise prices. Twenty-four bottles of Natural Spring water costs under $9 online, while one bottle of Smartwater costs over $2 in the CVS in Harvard Square.

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